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I have a ranch style home built around '60 to '63, no one seems to know for sure. I am replacing the paneling in my living room, and behind it is a layer of plastic sheeting and 3" foil backed fiberglass insulation in the walls. It is Owens Corning brand, 3" thick. It has printing on it that says "THICK F1S 3 INCH", but nothing that states the R-value. I can't seem to find any info on the web about this product. I am replacing it with spray-in closed cell foam, but I am curious to know how much R-value I have, so that I know how much I am increasing it?

Thanks.
 

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60's insulation was R13, I think, and that was the good stuff. Most was less than that. You could heat a house all winter for a few pennies, times change.
 

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That was installed before "R" values were a big deal. It's likely to be about the same R value per inch that fiberglass is today. About 3.1 per inch (+ -). If you are leaving it, don't insulate in front of the foil. The foil is the vapor retarder and needs to be on the warm in winter side of the insulation mass. By the way, foil is probably the best vapor retarder you can get. It has a permiability rating of near zero.
 

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60's insulation was R13, I think, and that was the good stuff. Most was less than that. You could heat a house all winter for a few pennies, times change.
Thanks for that info. I agree, that energy costs aren't what they used to be. And, this house was built to be an all electric home. Very strange for the early 60's... I was shocked when I found out the outside door in the living room was HOLLOW! I replaced that right away.
Luckily I have an excellent chimney (and fireplace) in the middle of the building, and I have my stoker coal stove in the basement as my primary heating source. (Love that Pennsylvania coal!!) I just need to update everything (windows, doors, insulation, etc) to tighten it up, so that next winter I don't burn 5 tons of coal like I did in '08 to '09.
 

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That was installed before "R" values were a big deal. It's likely to be about the same R value per inch that fiberglass is today. About 3.1 per inch (+ -). If you are leaving it, don't insulate in front of the foil. The foil is the vapor retarder and needs to be on the warm in winter side of the insulation mass. By the way, foil is probably the best vapor retarder you can get. It has a permiability rating of near zero.
My plan is to remove the old aluminum siding, then the homasote backer, peel off the fiberglass (leaving the foil), spray my foam filling the 3" cavity, replace the Homasote, install new windows and reside with fiber cement siding. I have already done one ~26' section of wall, but that wall was completely stripped and the framing changed to put in a patio door. The rest of the house has good drywall on the inside, and I don't want to destroy it. My experience with the spray foam is, you want to do it from the outside. Otherwise you'll end up with foam overspray on everything...:(

I am looking into buying/renting a 16" QuickPlane.
Anyone have one for rent, or a used one for sale?
 

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Are you saying, you put the homasote back on? What was used as a shear wall, just diagonal bracing?
I would have switched over to plywood.
Ron
 

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Look on the electric panel door, inside, for the inspection date. Check your attic insulation, venting and air leaks from living space. That's a lot of coal. Spray your rim joists at exterior, if basement is unfinished while using the foam. Be safe, G
 

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Look on the electric panel door, inside, for the inspection date. Check your attic insulation, venting and air leaks from living space. That's a lot of coal. Spray your rim joists at exterior, if basement is unfinished while using the foam. Be safe, G
I looked at the inspection sticker on the inside of the electrical box door. It has a name, but no date.

I added R-30 fiberglass to half the attic, and I only heated that half of the first floor last winter. The cellar is a big loser of heat. I am replacing the old steel hopper windows with insulated vinyl double pane hoppers, I'm foaming the rim joist and the walls with at least 2" of foam also.

I agree, I burned alot of coal for a house this size (and I only heated half of it at that!). That's too much waste for a single guy living by himself.

The plan is that next winter this place will be much more energy efficient.
Thanks for the help and advice..
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Are you saying, you put the homasote back on? What was used as a shear wall, just diagonal bracing?
I would have switched over to plywood.
Ron
Great point! I never thought about that. There isn't any diagonal bracing. But now that the wall cavities will be filled with foam, I'm not worried about it wracking. I'd also add that none of the drywall in this house has ANY cracks in it. So, they must have done something right, or were very lucky?
 
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