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kslanicky 10-28-2008 09:48 AM

Paint bubbling on 2nd floor ceiling
We recently had the house painted, and there are 1-2 spots in an upstairs bedroom that appear to be bubbling (they are large bubbles).

I went up into the attic to look for moisture, but everything appears to be dry.

My other thought was that it was bubbling because of a lack of insulation (and the temperature differential was high between the attic and the living space).

Does this sound reasonable?

Any other thoughts/idea/suggestions?

Square Eye 10-28-2008 10:10 AM

Lack of insulation + high temperature differential = large bubbles in the paint on the walls.
Condensation does bad things to paint and the surfaces they would normally seal. There is no air movement through the paint or between the paint and the wall so there is no way to get rid of the moisture from the humidity. Drywall will actually soak up the humidity and cause the paint to release. This can also be a problem in new construction when finishing new ceilings. The moisture from the drywall compound soaks into the drywall and then the ceilings sag and the texture loosens because the vapor barrier on the ceiling retains the moisture and it has to evaporate through the finish side.
Anyway, yep. You need to insulate :)

inspectorD 10-28-2008 05:47 PM

Good advice as usual. Insulation will also save you some money on heating the house, paint is secondary.:D
Call it a blessing in disguise.;)

kslanicky 10-29-2008 09:35 AM

Thanks for the responses... the bubbles are not super great right now... but some follow-up questions:

1. Are the summer months typically worse for this? Or the winter? Basically, should I insulate ASAP, or will winter be 'better'?
2. When insulating, should I bother trying to keep a 'path' to all areas of the attic? Or, perhaps better asked: Once fully insulated (to a depth of 4-6 inches), how does one 'walk around' the attic without falling through (and not being able to see the joists)? Should we put 4x8s down before insulating?

This might be a better question for another forum, but I'll start here.

Thanks again.

Square Eye 10-29-2008 07:04 PM

1. The summer months are much worse because the humidity is much higher.
It's far more comfortable to insulate an attic in cooler weather than in the summer months :)

2. When noodling around in a well insulated attic, you learn to search for ceiling joists with your foot. They're not hard to find but if you're concerned about it, laying walk-boards down before you insulate is a good idea

triple D 11-03-2008 10:19 PM

blind walk......
The rat walk is not visible under blow in insulation often. If you plan to have it blown in what I do is build a 2x10 rat walk. I cut pieces of 2x10 at 10" long and stand them up on end and screw them to every other truss. Then put my runners on these. This enables you to walk or crawl through attic without matting or moving insulation. Good luck on your attic adventure....

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