Do i need to put a vapor barrier in the attic?

Discussion in 'Insulation and Radiant Barriers' started by drewdin, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. Feb 4, 2014 #1

    drewdin

    drewdin

    drewdin

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    I have patches of insulation in the attic, spots with some and some with without. I went into the attic to insulate above the bathroom with ROXUL batt insulation.

    The guys at work today told me that I should have put a vapor barrier down before the batt insulation.

    I did this on the exterior walls but the inspector told me that I didnt have to put it in the ceiling so I didn’t when i had the place gutted. I made sure to seal the holes in the attic but i didn’t use a vapor barrier?

    Is it standard practice to put down a vapor barrier in the attic?
     
  2. Feb 4, 2014 #2

    oldognewtrick

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    No, you should not put a vapor barrier in the ceiling or attic area.
     
  3. Feb 4, 2014 #3

    drewdin

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    Great, I'm glad I didn't. What are the reasons why I shouldn't?


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  4. Feb 4, 2014 #4

    nealtw

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    Depending on where you live. Where I am you do.
     
  5. Feb 4, 2014 #5

    CallMeVilla

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    If you have a proper exhaust fan in the bathroom, it will vent the moisture. Trying to put a vapor barrier down between the ceiling framing is hopeless ... and if moisture came through the ceiling, it would condense onto the drywall INSIDE the attic with no way to escape (attic colder than batherrom leads to condensation).

    That wetness would mold and dilapidate the ceiling.

    Cut your ROXSUL tight, fill the voids, celebrate your correct decision. :D
     
  6. Feb 4, 2014 #6

    bud16415

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    Do you live closer to oldognewtrick or nealtw?
     
  7. Feb 4, 2014 #7

    drewdin

    drewdin

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    Not sure, I'm in Boston. I'm on my phone so it does not show me locations. We're expecting at least 12-18" of snow tomorrow. That will be the real test

    Where are you guys from?


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  8. Feb 4, 2014 #8

    bud16415

    bud16415

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    Oldog Nashville, Neal Vancouver, Villa San Diego, And I’m in Erie the snowiest city in the USA
     
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  9. Feb 4, 2014 #9

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    I think in Boston it's up to you. Paint is also a barrier of sorts but you do want to make sure you have no holes to allow house air into the attic and with the older house holes for wires and plumbing should also be checked not just for moisture but fire stop. The photo is what we do here.
    These plastic boxes come in all sizs for light boxes and switch and outlet boxes for the walls. When we build interior wals we put poly between the two top plates, they did,t do that here so the had to add accustic sealer around the edges.

    vapor-barrier-ceiling.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2014
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  10. Feb 4, 2014 #10

    drewdin

    drewdin

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    I asked around and I couldnt find anyone who put vapor barrier in the ceiling around here. Does not mean its right, but ill make sure i seal any holes to prevent any condensation.

    I'm going nuts trying to make an old house be efficient, my wife thinks im nuts...
     
  11. Feb 4, 2014 #11

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    You do have to be carefull. Your house lasted a hundred years because it could breath. Once you tighten it up you need fans that suck warm air out and need fresh air in, then you change out the windows that will have to be replaced every so many years. Just spilling a bucket of water or having a small overflow can be a desaster instead of an inconvenence. the cost of fuel aside, if you think you are saving the planet, all these new products require fuel and raw products to build and deliver. Just the kind of mood I'm in I guess.:2cents:
     
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  12. Feb 4, 2014 #12

    bud16415

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    The house I’m doing now is in the 100 plus year category and the kitchen ceiling that was in really bad shape it’s half below the second floor and half under a shed roof line. I had it leveled and furred down ready for drywall and it was suggested we seal it up in plastic right before we hung the drywall and I passed on doing it for the reason Neal mentioned above. Erie is not much different than Boston with regard to climate. Old houses need to breathe a little.
     
  13. Feb 4, 2014 #13

    drewdin

    drewdin

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    i agree, my intent was not to seal it up tight but rather to save as much money on heating and AC costs along with doing what is right for the house. Thanks for the suggestions, I plan on mostly adding insulation to the crawl spaces and attic, after that im done.
     

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