There are many people who strive to create a high-quality and comfortable attic. But it is impossible to realize this task without reliable insulation. And therefore, special attention should be paid to various options for insulation materials, the peculiarities of their use.
Features of the
At the dacha and in the country house, they always try to provide maximum comfort and convenience. Therefore, quite often, rooms for winter living are equipped in the attic floor, which was not originally intended for human life at all. And this creates a number of differences from the usual wooden house with a cold attic.
Unlike any other premises in a private frame house, the attic heats up very much in summer and cools down in winter. Not a single room, even one with a large glazing area, has such a problem. The geometry of the walls duplicates the outer contours of the attic roof with all its slopes, and therefore you will have to abandon the use of any bulk insulation. And soft roll options, prone to quick rolling, are also not suitable. It is very important to use the most effective insulation material so that a relatively thin and light layer of it fulfills its task without excessively pressing on the rafters and walls.
In the case of an unheated room, there are additional nuances. The rough floor is attached to the logs from below, and you will have to agree with this circumstance - after all, the front surface of the floor will be fastened on top. Next comes the vapor barrier and, in fact, the insulation material. Whether to lay waterproofing, even experts cannot finally come to a consensus. Floorboards thinner than 4 cm simply do not make sense, even under the thinnest and lightest people, they will sag.
How to choose a heater?
There is a huge variety of heaters on the market, and if not all are suitable for protecting the walls of the attic from the inside, then almost everyone can be put in the "pie" of the floor. But it is necessary to take into account the properties of a particular substance and structures created from it, first of all, the level of thermal protection.
The choice of insulation for the attic is very difficult, and if you have the slightest difficulty with it, you should consult with professionals. However, given the well-known properties, pros and cons of each option, you can make a decision in most cases and independently.
For many decades, foam has been widely used for insulating various structures. Under normal conditions, this component:
- does not saturate the air with toxic substances;
- excludes infection by microorganisms and their biological degradation;
- simultaneously performs the function of a vapor barrier in the room;
- has a very low weight;
- differs in affordable cost and serves as much as insulated buildings.
But one cannot fail to mention the weaknesses of such thermal protection. So, low density turns into insufficient mechanical strength. If nitro paint gets on the surface of the foam, it quickly collapses. This material is not ventilated, which can create a number of problems in the attic. And also mice or other rodents can start in it; only a reliable outer layer helps to resist their invasion, but it burdens the structure and makes it thicker.
A large proportion of people use polyurethane foam (PPU), which is better than conventional foam in a number of ways.But the use of this insulation will be correct only if a number of harmful myths are abandoned. The experience of its use in this capacity has been going on for more than half a century, and during all this time, residents of houses with polyurethane insulation have no cause for anger. Any person, unless he has an extremely large build, will calmly walk on the floor, insulated with PPU. The main thing is that the shoes are soft and do not have sharp pins and other protruding elements.
Do not confuse the polyurethane foam, laid in the "pies" of floor coverings, with polyurethane foam. Their chemical composition is close, but this is where the similarities end. When rigid material polymerizes, closed cells are formed in it, allowing to achieve a phenomenally high level of thermal insulation. Providing the same with improvised materials or even with any other factory products will not work. There are, however, factors due to which polyurethane foam has not yet replaced (and will never replace) other types of insulation:
- it should not be placed where ultraviolet light can act;
- it is unacceptable to use even the best varieties of polyurethane foam in contact with very hot surfaces or near open fire;
- the heat loss figures promised by the manufacturers refer to the ideal product of the highest density (and this is very difficult to create);
- over time, the effectiveness of thermal protection due to the replacement of the gas filler with air decreases;
- the highest adhesion is guaranteed, but not for surfaces that are completely unprepared.
For the attic, other heaters are often used. If polyurethane foam is the result of progress, then sawdust warming has been practiced for many centuries. The obvious advantages of this method are its availability for people, the cheapness of the material and the ability to independently control the quality of the finished layer.
To improve the quality of the material, it is treated with boric acid or a solution of copper sulfate, mixed with lime, gypsum and cement. Then no harmful animals will start inside, and the risk of fire will also be excluded.
The natural origin of sawdust heaters allows us to consider them as safe as the "progenitor" - wood. Preliminary exposure is required for 12 months and thorough drying of the material. If wiring runs through insulated walls, floors or ceilings, it is placed in fireproof shells. The big problem is that even well-processed sawdust will crumble over time. Therefore, they are not very suitable for insulating walls and other vertical surfaces.
The use of mineral wool for a residential attic is attractive already because this method of thermal protection simultaneously reduces the penetration of extraneous sounds from the outside. Such insulation does not burn, does not change its configuration when the temperature changes abruptly. Mineral wool has no tendency to be destroyed by caustic substances; it is not eaten by animals and bacteria.
When the insulation comes into contact with metals, corrosion does not occur. It is relatively easy to process the material, but if condensation forms, then all of it will fall into the insulation layer.
Ecowool also competes with mineral (basalt) wool. It is produced from waste of the cellulose industry and secondary raw materials, so that, according to environmental characteristics, this method of thermal protection is quite acceptable. Fresh ecowool keeps heat well, but after a short time its quality deteriorates. This is caused by mechanical settling of the material, therefore it is advisable to lay it in excess. Extruded polystyrene foam is completely devoid of this drawback.
In the overwhelming majority of cases, it is combined with plasterboard cladding. Outside, this material is protected by applying:
- aluminum or steel profiles;
- ceramic tiles laid in a joint.
Use polystyrene with care - it can easily catch fire on contact with an open flame or at high temperatures. It is advisable to choose those options that are processed in production with special components that effectively suppress ignition. But when using penoplex, as the manufacturer promises, water absorption is excluded, and the maintenance of comfortable conditions in the room is guaranteed.
The strength and uniformity of the coating allows it not to crumble or collapse even under strong mechanical stress. Builders can forget about the use of protective masks and gloves (which is unthinkable when working with the same glass wool).
Returning again from the latest technological advances to traditional materials, one cannot but say about expanded clay insulation. According to its composition, it is represented by oval-shaped granules obtained from fired clay or expanded clay sand. Depending on the production technology, expanded clay with a density of 250-600 kg per 1 cubic meter can be obtained. m. It perfectly retains heat and, in addition, prevents the development of microorganisms, rodents settle.
U-shaped stitched mats are made mainly on the basis of stone wool. They inherit its positive properties: zero fire hazard, resistance to harmful substances, excellent heat retention and resistance to strong heat. Due to the adaptation to the type of surface, this roll material is perfectly combined with shingles. Even glass wool is not able to hold the same amount of air per unit of volume as tufted mats. Its reliability is evidenced by at least constant use at nuclear power plants.
Continuing the review, one cannot fail to mention the different types of foil insulation. Most often, in practice, you can meet with expanded polyethylene - this self-adhesive coating will help protect chimneys, chimneys and ventilation pipes in the attic from heat leakage. Mineral wool is sometimes combined with foil, it is also designed to insulate smoke channels and roofs.
If such a shell is used for expanded polystyrene (necessarily double-sided), it will be able to withstand heating up to 170 degrees. Mainly it is designed to reduce heat loss in warm floors.
Another type of foil insulation is penofol. It can easily stop heat loss through floors, walls and roofs. Reflective insulation works effectively only when free space is reserved, and there must be at least five air layers. But you should beware of using polynor. This material is essentially no different from polyurethane foam, although some manufacturers say that it matches the quality of the foil options.
Its vapor barrier and waterproofing properties are equal to zero. It is much more practical to use fiberglass. It should be borne in mind that its panels should not move under their own weight or under the influence of other factors, therefore, the thermal protection will have to be installed very carefully.
If we go back to foil-clad materials, it is difficult to pass by foil insulation. It allows you to leave 95% of the heat inside, does not freeze itself in winter and does not tend to dry out in summer. If the installation is done correctly, the service life of the material is very long.
The selection of insulation for metal tiles has its own characteristics. To solve this problem, the following are widely used:
- mineral wool;
- glass wool.
It is advisable to work just at the time of building the roof. After all, you need to stuff and attach the material from the inside. An alternative to the three listed means is an insulating board, it is also soft fiberboard. This coating will provide reliable sound insulation (in addition to the main function). Air accounts for up to 4/5 of the total volume of thermal protection.
How to calculate?
Having chosen this or that material, it is required to calculate the thickness of the thermal insulation layer.The standards for such a calculation are defined in SNiP 23-02-2003. The smallest value of the thermal resistance established for a specific area is reduced by the value of the thermal resistance of the material. You can calculate it by taking the coefficient from the table and the required thickness. When the walls are formed by several materials, then what kind of thermal insulation should be calculated by summing their indicators.
Seamless insulation involves the use of sprayed materials. Most often, polyurethane foam is used in this technique. It is necessary to combat the appearance of dampness. Spraying polyurethane foam near open flames or heat sources can be life-threatening! These disadvantages are offset by resistance to chemicals, extreme cold and mechanical stress. Combined insulation of the attic can be carried out using both sprayed and plate and roll materials.
Additional double insulation is a kind of combined insulation, it is used if it is necessary to strengthen the protection against heat loss. Then the existing cladding turns into a base, after which a ventilation gap is left, and then a membrane is placed, an insulating material. Then comes the turn of new options for vapor barrier and cladding. Alternatively, you can make a warm film floor under the sheathing.
It is important to check that the "pie" of the roof does not have cold bridges and other deviations from the norm.
How to insulate?
For external insulation of the attic (strengthening the thermal protection of its roof), it is allowed to use only dense materials of slab design. Most masters recommend using penoplex in this case, since it manifests itself very well in this quality. By nailing a board equal to the width of the insulation to the rafters, you can avoid it sliding down. The slabs should be laid out in a checkerboard pattern. Bars are used to create the lathing, their thickness cannot be less than 4 cm.
Experienced repairmen have long developed the technology of insulating the attic from the inside and strictly follow it. To cover the top of the insulation from moisture, you need to go around all the wooden beams and attach a special film using a stapler or vertically directed slats. It is laid in layers with an overlap, fastening is made with special tape. Then a crate is created, which is made of rails 80-100 mm wide stuffed onto the rafters parallel to each other.
When working, it is recommended to monitor whether the rafters do not sag under load and whether the surface is flat. Deformations are detected during checks with a building level, and if they are, you need to take a plane. When the crate is ready, you can insulate it with your own hands by putting basalt mats inside. The width of the individual mat should correspond to the gap between the rafters, and the thickness to their width. If the mat is very thick, the insulation is placed in several layers.
Next comes the turn of the ceiling vapor barrier - it is provided by plastic films, glassine or roofing material. When attaching such materials to the rafters, glue is applied or the slats are stuffed in increments of 0.4-0.5 m.
It is recommended to glue each seam of the film with construction tape. Where the climate is very cold, it will be correct to put a vapor barrier in the gaps of the insulation itself. When all these works are completed, it is the turn of the installation of decorative panels, which become the front wall decoration.
Sometimes the crate is neglected. In such cases, it should be screwed to the bars themselves or to the steel profile stuffed from the inside onto the rafters:
- other selected material.
In cases where the walls of the attic are at the same time parts of its roof, there is no special need to insulate them. The difference between wall insulation and work on the ceiling is the need to always make a crate.The thermal protection scheme of the floor overlap forms a whole "pie": at the bottom there is a vapor barrier, above it is a heater. In this case, it will not work out without waterproofing, there is insulation above it, which occupies the space between the beams. The fastening of chipboard or high-quality boards completes the work.
It is required to protect the attic from heat loss, even when it is used only during the warmer months. Since even the most reliable structures can fail, you need to take care of the selection of waterproof material. Then suddenly leaky fragments of the roof will cease to be a serious danger to the house and property in it. No less significant circumstance is resistance to fire, especially for heaters in heated attics and near chimneys. According to experts, the best solution for a warm attic room is glass wool.
Plasticity allows it to lie in the gaps between the rafters, without leaving the slightest free areas. Accordingly, the trickles of cold air will not rush down, depriving the residents of the house of such well-deserved heat. In the middle zone of the Russian Federation, wadded materials must be laid with a layer of 15 cm, and building rules in cold climates require this value to be doubled. Any kind of "cotton wool" according to the unofficial order developed among developers should be installed only together with a vapor barrier.
The first step in the work is to tighten the waterproofing membrane, which is held to the rafters with slats. The tearing of stretched films and roofing materials is at least 30 mm; any wrinkles and folds on the membrane are unacceptable. Special mention should be made of the installation of thermal insulation for the pediment in the attic attic. It is desirable to produce it not inside, but outside. With internal insulation, the dew point will be shifted into the internal space, and the whole meaning of the work is lost - the wall will freeze deeper and stronger than before.
The preparation of the walls of the gables begins step by step with cleaning them from dust and dirt, then the base must be primed. A special primer will improve the adhesion of the adhesive to the surface. Experts recommend applying it in a couple of layers.
It is impossible to do without a counter-lattice in any residential attic - if builders begin to say that it is possible to refuse it, this immediately speaks negatively of their professionalism. Both in the gables and in the main part of the attic, it is necessary to insulate the windows, their places of abutment with the walls.
Every homeowner should know the specifics of this work, because so many performers violate the sequence of actions and get a bad result.
In the slopes (upper and lower) there is very little space for laying the thermal insulation material. It is advisable to order windows that go deep into the roof. Many experts consider stone wool and other heaters with the highest level of thermal protection to be the best solution. Regardless of the specific choice, waterproofing is required.
Another problematic spot on the second floor is the corners. At the oblique corners, the heat insulator is attached, having given it the necessary shape in advance. When the work is over, the surface to be insulated is carefully checked in order to notice the appearance of cracks in a timely manner. If they are found, a strip of insulation, which is 10 mm wider than the detected defect, should be placed at the problem site. Insulation between the first floor and the attic with bulk materials means filling the free space between the beams or beams with them to the very top. A film is installed on top, which is attached to the structural elements.
Instructions for effective insulation of the attic allows the owner of the house to mount all the necessary materials and structures.You can work outside only in warm and cloudless weather, because the slightest moisture that gets on the roofing elements and parts of the "pie" can lead to unpleasant consequences. If roll materials are chosen, it makes sense to wait for summer and start repairs. It is very inconvenient and impractical to mount them from below, the number of errors inevitably grows.
It is categorically unacceptable to cover the cracks of the insulation with polyurethane foam, for this you need to use only the same material.
Thermal insulation of complex structures
Thermal insulation of a sloping mansard roof has its own characteristics. 100% wood must be impregnated with special antiseptics and fire retardants. Every detail located on the street side should only be processed with compounds for outdoor use. But these mixtures are not suitable for impregnating wood indoors - if they are used, it will be possible to fight the bad smell for many years. The space under the roof must be equipped with ventilation gaps so that moisture does not stagnate.
In many cases, waterproofing under broken roofs is laid without stretching until it is even, but on the contrary, allowing it to sag by 30-50 mm. The choice between such approaches is a matter of professionals who know when it will ensure water flow and when it will not.
When working independently, you need to do everything in the usual way and not try to invent original schemes. Care should be taken to ensure that all insulating materials are correctly laid in several planes at once.
Even qualified builders are not 100% insured against mistakes, and if a particular team has only positive reviews, you still need to carefully monitor its work. If, nevertheless, mistakes were made, very soon characteristic signs of improper insulation of the attic will appear, and the first enemy of any homeowner is condensation. It is unacceptable to interrupt the vapor barrier line on the entire outer surface of the attic, and each section of the interface of its fragments must be glued with masking tape. The gross mistake when condensation appears is to seal all the cracks.
If you do this, it will stop dripping and start pouring in full-fledged streams. It is useless to deal with the problem of leaking roof and accumulating liquid, blocking the path of water.
You need to turn to professionals for help and not just consult, but call them to inspect the attic, preferably with a thermal imager in your hands. If a return pipe of the heating system is laid in an unheated attic, insulate and create waterproofing, vapor barrier is needed in the same way as in a heated space.
Warming is a complex problem. It is naive to try to solve it simply by choosing the "miraculous" isolators promised by the advertisement. Even if their properties are real, it will not be possible to eliminate the disadvantages of engineering solutions and structural materials. From the first minutes of design and construction, you need to think about how to provide warmth and comfort - only then you will get the best result. In the absence of experience and knowledge, it is more correct to order the services of masters, they will select the optimal materials and in a few hours bring your idea to life.
Well, for those who nevertheless decided to insulate the attic on their own, a set of recommendations and tips presented in the next video will help.