Thinking about laying some new insulation in your roof this weekend? Here’s a simple guide to make sure your DIY insulation project is a success!
Before even purchasing your ceiling insulation, you’ll need to consider taking some safety precautions. Ideally, you’ll want a pair of gloves, a face mask, and some long clothing to cover your skin. It’s true that most modern insulation is a lot more user-friendly than years gone by. But there are still a lot of fibres that make up an insulation batt. These can pose a risk to your respiratory system if inhaled. Plus, it can irritate your skin, hence the need to cover up.
These safety measures are extra important if you’re removing old insulation first, because what you’re taking out may not be as soft and easy to handle as your new batts.
While most homes have similar construction methods, it’s not uncommon to find that your roof cavity has a few quirks. It might be some smaller spaces between joists, or the space between joists might even be larger than your average insulation batt.
Measure carefully before you buy, so you’ll know exactly how much you need to purchase. You should also measure the depth of the space between your joists, because this may be helpful when choosing the thickness of your insulation.
Choosing the right ceiling insulation
When installing roof insulation, you need a certain amount of heat loss resistance. This is shown as an ‘R’ rating on insulation batts, and for ceilings you need something between 2.5 – 6.0. Usually, the higher the ‘R’ rating, the thicker it will be, so take that into consideration when you do your measurements.
Aside from that, look for high-quality insulation that’s rated for thermal performance, fire resistance and something that’s eco-friendly.
Install your ceiling insulation batts
Once you’re ready to install your batts, the process is actually quite simple. There are two ways you can go. You might choose to take the entire rolled up insulation batts into the roof cavity and open them there. Many people prefer this option, as they can simply cut what they need as they lay the batts between the joists.
Alternatively, if you’ve measured extremely well, you could choose to cut all the pieces first and take them into the cavity individually. If you choose this option, just be aware that the batts can sometimes make a mess, so you’ll need to clean up thoroughly afterwards. This is why many people prefer to just do everything in the roof cavity.
The small details matter
Finally, don’t forget the smaller spaces in your roof cavity. If you have some small sections between joists, take the time to cut pieces of insulation and put them in. Insulation is much more effective when installed everywhere.
Also, take care around chimneys, exhaust fans and the like. These should be insulated too, but you need to be careful not to cover them completely and restrict airflow.