Wall insulation for a 1926 house?

Discussion in 'Michigan Homesteading and Home Improvement' started by Old Whaler, Oct 26, 2020.

  1. Old Whaler

    Old Whaler

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    My son bought a house this year and it needs insul in the walls. Aluminum siding outside, plaster & lath inside.
    I looked for existing threads but didn't see anything that matched up.
    What are the options these days? Blown FG? Injected foam?
    Anybody do this lately? Kent County.
    Thanks
     
  2. grapestomper

    grapestomper

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    If he is going to reside you can add board insulation on the outside.
     
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  3. Old Whaler

    Old Whaler

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    The siding is in pretty good shape, so we need an option that leaves that as is for now.
    I've done some research and I guess we have to find out if it has balloon walls. If it does, we can literally pour insulation down into the walls from the attic, if what I read is true.
    Still looking for any advice we can get.
    Thanks
     
  4. grapestomper

    grapestomper

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    I just redid a jewelry store and that had that framing and we blew in recycled blue jean material as the insulation. It worked well.
     
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  5. micooner

    micooner

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    If he's keeping the plaster lath walls rent the blower machine loose insulation. Drill a hole top middle and bottom between studs and begin. If he's demo the walls then foam or batts.
     
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  6. Old Whaler

    Old Whaler

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    Anyone ever use Perlite or Zonolite?
     
  7. MossyHorns

    MossyHorns

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    FYI! Zonolite usually contains asbestos and isn't available for that reason.
     
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  8. Old Whaler

    Old Whaler

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    Thanks for the warning. Yes, I've read that, but I also read that there's now an asbestos free version-- but that was in a remodeler's forum (unofficial source), so that's kinda why I'm asking, to see if anyone can verify.
     
  9. december1979

    december1979

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    Most likely the house is balloon framed and you can blow insulation down the entire stud cavity from the attic. Make sure you insulate the attic, that's more important than the walls. Also make sure you have good air flow in the attic, use cardboard baffles at the soffit vent so the insulation doesn't block them. If you have no soffit vents, add some and make sure you have pop vents on only one side of the peak if it doesn't have ridge vent.

    .

    Rent a blower machine and use either cellulose (cheapest) or fiberglass. Be careful when blowing the stud cavities if the basement is unfinished in any way. Balloon framing means the stud cavity is open from the basement to the attic so the insulation will just blow out all over the basement if there nothing to stop it.

    .

    I have several insulation certifications and worked as a insulator in my early days of construction.
     
  10. jjlrrw

    jjlrrw

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    Our first house was also an old farm house, outside walls had no insulation the previous owners just put on new siding and the interior needing some patching and paint already so we drilled and used cellulose from the inside. It worked good but one cavity was taking for ever to fill, I found out the insulation made it way into the utility room was able to reuse it so just a mess and small setback. So once you get going if an area is taking a long time to fill look around.
     
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  11. MEL

    MEL Premium Member

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    Good information here December. I want to stress the attic insulation. Generally speaking most heat loss is thru the ceiling/attic. 16” cellulose is a good goal. I have 20” in my attic. Also, air seal whenever and wherever you can with a spray foam to seal air leaks. Pay attention to the rim joist area as that’s an big area of cold air infiltration.
    While I haven’t done it for a few years, I’m a BPI certified Home Energy Auditor (retired, still do some on the side as I still have thermal cameras) along with a builder (retired).
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2020
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  12. Old Whaler

    Old Whaler

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    Appreciate the info. I was hoping to find some pros. Good on you for helping.

    Yeah, attic has some insul, needs more. Need to get up there and verify balloon or not so we can get the walls taken care of first. Drafty, useless pull down stair needs to go and be replaced by a tight scuttle, too. Hip roof (28X28, 4/12, so low cubic footage). Has two pot vents, but insufficient soffit/inflow, and all the aluminum soffit is solid. Plan is to add an inflow louver in the dormer.
    At least he scored a pretty good deal on the place, and it will be nice after some work.
    Too bad all this has to happen during hunting & steelhead season!