Tips for Winterizing Older Homes by Blowing Insulation into the Walls

If you live in an older home, you may feel drafts and you may notice that the floors aren’t as warm as you would like. Part of this reason can be due to the fact that insulation in the walls has fallen, has become loose with age or was improperly insulated in the beginning. You can easily rectify this problem by blowing insulation into the walls.

Many do it yourself repair-people can easily do this themselves. It doesn’t take a lot of knowledge or a lot of muscle. It does require an insulation blower (which can usually be rented at any major hardware store and a second person to help).

Here are some simple steps to help you get started on the job of blowing insulation into an older home, which will make it warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.

First, decide where you wish to drill your holes. If you can easily remove a row of siding and replace it (without causing any damage), you can drill the holes through the wood behind the siding. If this sounds like too much trouble or you are afraid of damaging the wood, you can drill right into the siding itself. The hardware store sells caps that is used especially for the blowing of insulation. These caps come in an array of colors to match almost any color of siding. They just push right into the hole (or if they are stubborn you can use a little of caulking to help them to stay put). Be sure to find out the size of the caps before you begin drilling so you know what size hole you will need to drill.

Once you have your holes drilled, you are ready to begin. One person has the duty of filling the machine with the insulation. No fears, it isn’t itchy. Actually, most of this insulation is made from recycled newspapers and like substances (no fiberglass at all). This person also has the duty of turning the machine off and on.

When filling the machine, do this slowly. You don’t want to pack the machine tightly with insulation or the hoses will become clogged.

A trick that has been found useful when filling the holes is to wrap a piece of cloth around the nozzle after placing it into a hole. This helps keep the insulation inside of the hole and not blowing back at you causing a mess.

Once your nozzle is in place, have your helper turn on machine. You can tell by the sound when the hole seems full. Give your helper the single to turn the machine off. Unwrap the cloth from the nozzle. Take the nozzle out of the hole and place a cap over the hole. Go on to the next hole.

Yes, it is really that simple.

If your house does not have siding on it, but is painted instead. You may want to skip the caps and seal the holes with some expanding foam from the inside. Allow the foam to dry. Use a knife to cut off the access that pops out from the outside. Sand down any access if needed. Spot paint if you can. If this doesn’t do the trick, you may have to completely repaint the exterior of the house.

How much insulation you will need will depend on two important factors: the size of your house and the amount of insulation needed (something you will not know in the beginning). For these reasons, make sure you keep the receipt of all insulation you buy and make sure you can return any that you do not use that is still unopened.

All in all this winterizing tip will take you about a half of a day to a day, depending on the size of your home and how long it takes you to rent the equipment and buy the insulation. Yet, once you see your lower heating costs, you will agree that it was a day or half of a day you truly did something worthwhile.

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