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Old 02-11-2015, 06:12 AM   #1
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batt insulation over a drop ceiling


Hello. My church in South MS is a metal building and has have a layer of insulation next to the metal on all sides and roof. We have a drop ceiling (2x2 tiles) throughout the building along with can lighting and 2x4 troffers. Wanting to reduce our power bill, we were considering adding 2x4 batts of R30 insulation directly above the ceiling tile. Given our 9 ft ceiling height and 20 ft high pitched roof, we have considerable air volume above the ceiling tiles that we are paying to heat/cool monthly (20,000 cubic feet of air above the suspended ceiling vs. 30,600 cubic feet below it).

So, is batt insulation laid directly onto the suspended grid the best option provided we keep it 3" away from all lighting fixtures? Also, shouldn't unfaced batts be sufficient given that we are not insulating against an exterior wall?

Any help or information is greatly appreciated.

Last edited by Squidbilly; 02-11-2015 at 06:18 AM.
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Old 02-11-2015, 06:53 AM   #2
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What type of insulation is against the underside of the ceiling? Does it have a poly facing on it?

If the building does not sweat or show condensation at this point, my concern with insulating the drop ceiling would be that you were effectively reduce the temperature inside that "attic space" and may in fact create a condensation issue where there was not one before.
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Old 02-11-2015, 04:35 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windows on Wash View Post
What type of insulation is against the underside of the ceiling? Does it have a poly facing on it?

If the building does not sweat or show condensation at this point, my concern with insulating the drop ceiling would be that you were effectively reduce the temperature inside that "attic space" and may in fact create a condensation issue where there was not one before.
Thanks for the reply. The insulation that is there now was installed with the metal building: plastic batts draped over the red iron and directly beneath the metal. That is all the insulation we have at the moment. The attic is not vented at all though we have talked about adding ventilation fans in the past.
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Old 02-11-2015, 05:00 PM   #4
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Last time I dealt with a drop ceiling that had insulation over it, to help insulate the rooms below, was a school. I swore that would be the last time I ever dealt with any kind of install that someone decided to go that route, instead of doing it another way.

Windows & Doors are the main culprits for heating & cooling bills. A church when no one is there, the heat can be turned down to around 62, during cooling, bump up around 76. Only would need the system on, when church or meetings are in session.

Best thing would be to have a zoned type system, so that you are only heating and cooling those areas that you need to. If someone wants to work in an office, go with Infra-red or Oil filled style heaters for those areas, if they are only in there for a few hours at a time.

Also checking with the fuel or electric supplier for a better rate, always helps.



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Old 02-11-2015, 06:11 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squidbilly View Post
Thanks for the reply. The insulation that is there now was installed with the metal building: plastic batts draped over the red iron and directly beneath the metal. That is all the insulation we have at the moment. The attic is not vented at all though we have talked about adding ventilation fans in the past.
Hopefully you could visualize what I was saying.

If you insulated that drop ceiling, that attic and all the steel framing is going to get much, much colder as a result in the reduction of heat transfer up there.

Colder framing + relative humidity = condensation
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