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Finding the best route

azicafoose | Posted in General Questions on

Hope this is in the correct forum. So I’m getting ready to insulate the walls. Blowing cellulose into my old house. I’ve watched the videos and think I am about ready to do this. 
I’ve been thinking, and I had read an article but cannot find it now, about blowing into the walls from the basement and attic. Anyone done this? I imagine the down sides would be that the baseplate and top plate for your wall would have to be drilled through, house is platform, and I mean floors were laid, the. walls were put on top of the flooring and second story built the same way in 1900. the upside would be no holes to really patch just puta plug back in the hole and done. Drill bits would last longer because not drilling through masonry plaster.

could I just remove the baseboards and blow through that space? I’m looking for simple less intrusive way. We’ll be living in the house and I have 4 kids running around. Just missing out loud seeing if there are easier ways to do it with less mess in the living space for the house

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  1. GBA Editor
    Brian Pontolilo | | #1

    Hi Azicafoose

    I'm not sure which article you are looking for, but I think you'll find this helpful: How to Install Cellulose Insulation

  2. Expert Member
    Dana Dorsett | | #2

    I've personally dense-packed my 1920s antique bungalow. For the first floor walls most cavities were accessible drilling up from the basement, but for the second floor walls and above windows & other locations that were blocked by framing I opted to drill from the interior (using a hole saw, not a drill bit) rather than messing up the wide cedar clapboards. It's a lot easier to execute a cosmetic repair on a 2.5- 2.75" round hole in plaster than it is to repair cedar siding.

    It's not super messy to do it all from the interior if you're careful. Cut the sleeve off a sweatshirt to use as a blow-back gasket around the dense-packing tube, and mark the dense packing tube with a band of bright tape about a foot back from the end to keep from accidentally pulling it all the way out with the blower running.

    Going with 2-hole method from the exterior still takes 1"-1.25" holes, and even after banging in some dowel plugs and cutting them flush they're always still visible through the paint. With 2-hole method the cellulose density is substantially lower, making it more prone to settling over time. While I've seen professionally installed cellulose installed with 2-hole method that didn't settle an inch in more than 25 years, I've also retrofit dense-packed stud bays in one house where it had settled more than 2 feet in under 10 years.

    Box store rental blowers don't usually come with the cone nozzles & deflectors for 2-hole method, nor do the come with dense packing tubes. With a single stage rental blower it's unlikely that any of the walls will blow out the plaster, but that can be an issue with 2-stageblowers on houses this old.

    1. azicafoose | | #3

      So you went up from the basement and it worked well? That was my main concern I figured it would work ok, and was hoping to get some clarity on if anyone had actually done this. I’ll patch above windows of course, but thank you. Any tips on fighting gravity lol? Any major problems you had doing it this way?

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