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Community and Q&A

Diy removing insulation from attic

Greg Philliips | Posted in General Questions on

This is fiberglass insulation that is like cotton balls. Lots of air getting around and through this stuff!! Was going to air seal attic. Want to suck it out of there first. I have ideas, but thought you guys might have good ideas! Thank you, Greg

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  1. Steve Knapp CZ 3A Georgia | | #1


    Can you post a picture? You have to be cautious because some types of insulation contain asbestos.

  2. User avatar
    Dana Dorsett | | #2

    Is it blown fiberglass, or disintegrating batts?

    Batts you can usually roll up (even when they're falling apart) then clean up the rest with a shop-vac.

    Blown insulation might require a shovel (plastic preferred, for reduced risk of damage to unseen wiring) and oversized garbage bags.

    For either use a decent respirator mask and safety goggles with screen mesh vents rather than open vents, not the cheapie throwaway masks & goggles.. Microscopic fiberglass shards tend to hang in the air for a long time, and you don't want them in your lungs or eyes.

  3. Greg Philliips | | #3

    This fiberglass must have been blown in 18 years ago. I'll try to attach pictures. I was going to try to vacuum it outside into a barrel lined with plastic bags in series with a 6.5 hp shop vac. I may have to add a voulme air pump ( available at harbor freight) ?

  4. User avatar
    Dana Dorsett | | #4

    You'll probably find it quicker with a plastic rake & shovel, pulling it onto a big tarp that gets folded & rolled then dragged out, or oversized trash bags. The storage volume of a shop vac is tiny, and it won't compress the fiberglass a whole lot. You'll be spending as much time emptying it as vacuuming.

  5. Joel Cheely | | #5

    I had several inches of poured in mineral wool in my attic. I made a cyclone dust collector out of a 55 gallon drum (several YouTube videos show you how). I had an old drum and a few pieces of pvc pipe so it didn't cost me anything. It was very effective in removing a lot of insulation.

  6. Keith H | | #6

    If you do use a vacuum cleaner, at least buy a HEPA filter for it. The cheapo filters are going to let a lot of sub micron particles through the filter. Don't forget the P100 respirator and don't forget to shave so you get a good fit. And don't forget ventilation. Even a respirator has its limits for how dusty the air can be.

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