Bathrooms are one of the most frequently used rooms in the house. Its not surprising that controlled moisture is a big concern when it comes to installing bathroom insulation. The activities in a bathroom (showering, bathing and washing) add moisture vapor to the air.
The moisture vapor can be transferred along with the heat into the walls. This is even more common in humid environments. Moisture vapor trapped in the walls can lead to mold and mildew growth, which can damage your home and create health problems. Bathroom insulation can help control moisture and save your home.
The Benefits of Insulation in the Bathroom
Remodeling your bathroom provides the opportunity to create a more comfortable and safe room. In addition to adding bathroom insulation, you can seal air leaks, upgrade space heating and improve ventilation. These steps will save money on energy bills and improve the comfort level of your bathroom.
Making the bathroom comfortable is essential. People are more sensitive to the temperature in the bathroom more than any other room in the house. Sealing air leaks and replacing the insulation are keys in creating warmth and comfort in the bathroom.
Replacing bathroom insulation during a remodeling project is the best choice. Old insulation may have been installed badly or may be damaged from moisture. You need to check building codes in your local area to make sure you are using the right type of insulation.
You should use insulation with excellent moisture control properties. To reduce the possibility of vapor collecting underneath your bathroom insulation, install a vapor retardant.
You can also use a low-permeability vapor barrier (like a plastic sheet) on the inside surface of the framing. This will prevent moisture from condensing in the wall cavities and causing rot.
You have two main choices for bathroom insulation. You can choose batting with a vapor retardant layer already installed, or you can use a combination of a vapor barrier and insulation. If you are going with the later option, you will install the batting first and then the vapor barrier.
To install bathroom insulation on your walls for moisture protection and sound control, first apply caulk between the top plates and the bottom plate and the floor.
Sealants, like caulking, should be used on the clean, dry oil-free surface. If you are using face bats with a vapor retardant layer, then you will place the bats into the wall cavity and then staple the flanges of the bats to the studs.
If you are using un-faced bats, apply the insulation to the cavity between the stud frames. Make sure to cut the insulation if it is two long rather than compressing it or doubling it over. This will compromise the integrity of the insulation. Finally, control air leakages by applying caulk or foam sealant around openings like windows and doorframes.
If you are using faced bathroom insulation, your job is complete. However, if you need a vapor barrier take the following steps.
Apply your plastic film by starting at the top plate in one corner of the room.
Pull the film tight and staple it every 12 inches.
Drive staples in at the center of every stud, and around the openings while you work your way around the room.
Finally, trim out the plastic film from over the windows, doors and electrical boxes.