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Old 02-03-2016, 02:53 PM   #1
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Attic Insulation Question


I have a decent sized walk up attic, the attic has flooring put down by prior owner. Under the flooring is older lower R value fiberglass insulation. I'd like to eventually air seal and re-insulate the attic. I'd like to bring the R value up to current recommendations for my area which I believe is R 49 and also put back down a floor so we can use for easy storage space. However in order to achieve R 49 value in either Roxul or Fiberglass I'd have to cross bat the insulation which would make it difficult or impossible to put down flooring to the joists. In addition to that I'd like to keep the ceiling below accessible so I can eventually run ceiling fans, recessed lighting to the bedrooms and bathrooms below the attic in question.

So my question is what are my options to achieve the desired R value, yet keep an attic floor so I can walk around freely and store bins and boxes? Thanks so much in advance for time and help!

Last edited by cbaur88; 02-03-2016 at 02:55 PM. Reason: Added Info
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Old 02-03-2016, 03:30 PM   #2
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I think you have answered you own question to an extent.

The answer is you can't. The attic is either low performance (R-Value depths) and a storage area or high performance and you treat it like an attic.

You can spray the roof deck and just condition the whole area if you want but that would not be cheap and a pretty expensive investment for just securing some storage area.
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Old 02-03-2016, 03:55 PM   #3
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Most attics where never even intended to be use for storage.
People see that huge area and think it's going to waste.
What size and free spans are the joist?
https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm...sulation_table
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Old 02-03-2016, 08:18 PM   #4
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I have a very similar situation, though I currently have loose fiberglass underneath 4x8' plywood attic flooring.

I'm currently air sealing the floor area by area, which is slow because I have a considerable amount of storage that I need to move around, and am also replacing the dirty, itchy, loose fiberglass with cellulose.

I plan on removing the outer 4 foot layer of plywood flooring, building a 16" high plywood dam, and filling that area with cellulose to R60+. If you have a full attic, you could do something similar -- fill the outer 4 feet with loose cellulose to R50+.

For the center section, you could lay 2x6 or 2x8 crosswise, remove all the fiberglass batts, and fill the whole area with loose cellulose. You could then put the plywood flooring on top of that.

That would let you keep the storage, and still have access to the ceiling below, by just moving the loose cellulose out of the way.

Good luck!
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Old 02-04-2016, 07:37 AM   #5
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Thanks for the replies everyone. The thought did cross my mind to raise up the floor a little bit to give me the best of both worlds. I'd need to think it out thoroughly since I want to still have sufficient access should I need to run wire, cable, etc... to the bedrooms/bathrooms below. Raising floor is allot of work but something I can take my time doing since it's not an eye sore project. I do see it as wasted storage space although I know it was not intended to be used for storage. I think I'll first simply air seal it which should help overall and replace the older fiberglass w/ Roxul R-30 bats. Thanks again guys, always appreciate your time and help!
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Old 02-06-2016, 11:31 PM   #6
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As others mentioned, properly insulated attics aren't great for storage. In your case, you could explore adding up posts to the joists for lightweight storage.
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