Let’s insulate the crawlspace!

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Our old house has an enormous kitchen addition. It’s nice to have the space, but this time of year that room would freeze the tail off a brass monkey, as my Grandma would have said.

In our on-going investigations (i.e. why the heck is this room so cold and what the heck can we do about it?) we figured out that the crawlspace under the addition wasn’t completely insulated. There was insulation around the outside walls, but none in the floor. Hmmm. Maybe that would help. Well, it couldn’t hurt, right?

First step: don the appropriate outfit.
IMG_1876

Coveralls, sweatshirt with hood, safety glasses, particulate mask. I can tell this is going to be fun. I’m already hot and itchy. IMG_1878

Then I climbed up the ladder and through the hole into the crawlspace. We think this hole was once a window.

IMG_1871This is the west side of the crawlspace and there’s the same amount of space on the other side of that beam running down the left side of the photo. (There are also cobwebs..ewww…and a scary-looking-ghostly-dead plant/weed in the corner.)IMG_1881We bought bags of R12 insulation slightly wider than the floorboards which are 15 inches apart. Then we tucked it carefully between the floorboards, trying not to compress it. Friction holds it in place. We used smaller pieces to fill around ductwork and anywhere that a full piece wouldn’t fit. This blurry photo above shows a big bag of insulation and me using my foot to push a small piece into place in the corner. Some yoga moves were coming in handy here. IMG_1888And then it was time for a coffee break. I find that my projects tend to involve safety glasses and beer. All in all, it took about two and half hours to do the job.

I think the addition is about 250 square feet and I THINK the kitchen floor IS warmer since we did this.

It didn’t have the dramatic effect we were hoping for. <sigh> However, the kitchen has another problem I didn’t mention. It has five huge windows. Dual pane slider windows. We think whoever did the renovations was from a more temperate climate. Siberia maybe. Looks like this summer we will be buying some triple pane windows. Until then, we’ve got the market cornered on space heaters, cozy blankets and hot toddies.

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