Do It Yourself Attic Insulation

Have you looked in your attic lately? Insulation in your attic is an essential component to help keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. While the cooler temperatures are making your attic more comfortable, it’s the perfect time of year to re-apply attic insulation before the hot summer heat arrives.

There are numerous types of insulation to choose from, and each has a different method of installation. The example below uses cellulose–an easy “do it yourself” process.

Cellulose Insulation

Insulation Blower
Breathing Masks

Directions: Purchase the cellulose insulation at your local hardware store where you should also be able to rent an insulation blower. The amount you need will depend on the square footage of your home and the thickness of the existing insulation. Make sure the thickness of your insulation (including any existing insulation) is between 12 and 15 inches, which should give you an R-value of 38. You will need at least one person to assist you in applying the insulation.

Installing Cellulose Attic Insulation:

1. Place the insulation and the blower machine outdoors. DO NOT operate the machine indoors.

2. Take the blower’s tube up into the attic with you (through a window or door in the house). Make sure you are outfitted with gloves, goggles and a breathing mask.

3. Have the person (also outfitted with gloves, goggles and a breathing mask) stationed near the blower machine begin to feed it with the loose, cellulose insulation, one bale at a time. When ready, this person will also control the flow of the insulation by using an on/off switch or a lever that allows insulation to pass through.

4. In the attic, sweep the blower’s tube in the locations where you desire the insulation. When finished, have the person stationed with the blower turn off the machine.

On average, an 1,800 square foot house will take approximately four hours to complete at a cost of $500. Prices and times may vary due to retailers, square footage and depth of existing insulation. On a house with little or no pre-existing insulation, adding more—and doing it yourself—can help make your home more comfortable and provide some cost savings to your power bill.