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Community and Q&A

How do I get rid of a LARGE AMOUNT of attic moisture?

Scott Hill | Posted in Mechanicals on

I bought the house I grew up in that was built in 1952 24×30. 1972 an addition was added making it L shaped. I had central AC installed 2016. The installer did a terrible job of installing the metal boots in each room and there was no stopping airflow around them, not properly insulated, and insulation was not packed back around them. For a year and a few months this was the condition. Then my daughter moved in and was washing cloths and hanging whole loads of laundry in the house. I also had house pressure washed.

Last month when we were fixing the AC boots we found an EXTREME amount of moisture in the attic soaking wet insulation packed down. Moisture content of many rafters, boards, etc above 16% some even 20 %. Also found the air box inadequately sealed and air blowing in the attack on the discharge side.

Now have fungus growing between rafters and excess moisture. Fire water, mold abatement restoration contractors all seem clueless when it comes to attics.

How can I fix this?

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Replies

  1. Scott Hill | | #1

    I should add The walls in the old house not insulated, and there is NO SOFFIT Vent only ridge Vent The addition is wide open soffit and ridge vent and the mold growth is MUCH WORSE under the plywood decking vs the 1x6. Plywood is also delaminating.

  2. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #2

    Scott,
    It's always a good idea to let us know your geographical location or climate zone, so we can provide better advice.

    In a case like yours -- one that may involve structural rot that threatens the integrity of the building -- you have to depend on the advice of local experts who are able to inspect the building.

    There are multiple issues here:
    - Are framing members rotting to the point of needing replacement?
    - Is the roof sheathing rotting to the point of needing replacement?
    - Is there enough mold to raise indoor air quality concerns?
    - Is the insulation saturated and in need of removal and replacement?
    - If there are no structural and IAQ concerns, what's the best way to dry everything quickly: which an industrial dehumidifier, or fans, or both?

    This type of assessment will probably involve insurance agents, a water abatement contractor, and an engineer. Good luck.

  3. Scott Hill | | #3

    I am in Virginia Beach. Some rafters have 20 % moisture content and plywood is delaminating in areas. Mold growing everyday.. Insulation was saturated it was removed and replaced hoping to dry it up but condition persists.

  4. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #4

    Scott,
    My advice is unchanged: "In a case like yours -- one that may involve structural rot that threatens the integrity of the building -- you have to depend on the advice of local experts who are able to inspect the building. ... This type of assessment will probably involve insurance agents, a water abatement contractor, and an engineer. Good luck."

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