Tuesday, July 01, 2008



After my Tuesday morning workout (wherein I lifted a total of 62,330 pounds), I embarked on a new MAJOR house project.
This is second in size and complexity only to my bathroom remodeling project.
This project is the installation of foam insulation in the exterior walls of my humble abode.
Urethane foam is expensive but is very good insulation.
It will change the insulation value of my standard stud walls from R-3 (they are empty) to R-24.

In planning for this exercise, I originally planned to do my first practice session in the walls of my add-on room in the back of my house.
But when I found that the ceiling in that room was not insulated either I decided not insulate the walls.
Because the space between the ceiling and the roof in that room is so narrow, it will be nearly impossible to get insulation in there (I do not want to cut holes in the ceiling to insulate it like I am the walls.).
(You might wonder why I would not insulate my walls back there just because the ceiling is not insulated.
Most heat (40%-60%)is lost or gained through the ceiling.
Insulating the walls will not affect that area that much with an uninsulated ceiling.

So I decided to concentrate on the walls of my house as originally built.
Thus, my gym room (front bedroom) became the new guinea pig for practice.
So today after my workout (in the gym room, duh) I moved all the gym accessories away from the outside walls, marked the walls (midway up and at the top) and began to drill two-inch holes every 16 inches or so between the studs.

I moved the insulation tanks into the room, hooked up the hoses, installed the required anti-insulation clothes on my body, opened the tank valves, stuck the nozzle into the first hole and pulled the trigger.
Out came a spray of white stuff that looked sort of like whipped cream.

I knew the stuff was supposed to expand up to eight times so I had to learn how much foam to squirt into a hole before it started to ooze out of the hole.
The session was educational.
And there was quite a bit of foam on the floor (I had placed a sheet of plastic on the floor).
I estimate that I wasted about one stud-space worth of foam on the floor.
That was the bad news.

The good news was that I insulated the whole room (both outside walls).
And I have more insulation left in the tanks. (about 20%)
That may be enough to insulate the single exterior wall in my bathroom.
I am very relieved to have this project underway.
I have been thinking about it for over a year.

(I have had the insulation since late January.
I originally intended to do the project during winter and save on my winter heating bill, but the insulation requires an interior temperature of 80 degrees and I did not want to try to heat the house that hot.
So I decided to wait until I had the time.
Now I have the time.)

So now all I have to do is apply sheetrock joint compound over the holes in my wall.
Then I can repaint the room.
The repaint project has been on hold pending the insulation project.

I need to order two more tanks to finish the rest of the house.

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