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  1. #1
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    Default Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Hello

    When using this product in a crawl space is it acceptable to have the foil exposed with the insulation towards the subflooring. This product has aluminum foil as the faced portion of the insulation.

    Thanks, Jim

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    No.

    As I recall there are two things which address that: a) the facing (vapor retarder) goes toward the warm in winter side; b) there is a warning label on the insulation which states not to leave the foil facing exposed as it can burn - at least the foil faced ones I used to see had that warning label on the foil facing or the manufacturer's information.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    No.

    As I recall there are two things which address that: a) the facing (vapor retarder) goes toward the warm in winter side; b) there is a warning label on the insulation which states not to leave the foil facing exposed as it can burn - at least the foil faced ones I used to see had that warning label on the foil facing or the manufacturer's information.
    Jerry, I looked and did not see the warning. I have seen it plenty of times. This product is aluminum foil faced. I wanted to add a picture but it is too large.

    Jim

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    Last edited by JIM MURPHY; 09-04-2014 at 06:35 PM.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Jim; it may be radiant barrier, which works best shinny side down. Can you google the product name?

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    I tried and went to the Certaineed website and it did not show the product. It did show a foiled face product with a shiny cover that looks like aluminum and it said it was a fire hazard to have it exposed.

    Jim

    - - - Updated - - -

    I tried and went to the Certaineed website and it did not show the product. It did show a foiled face product with a shiny cover that looks like aluminum and it said it was a fire hazard to have it exposed.

    Jim


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    From here: http://www.certainteed.com/resources...%20SpecSht.pdf

    (bold is mine)
    INSTALLATION
    In most areas, vapor retarders should be installed on the warm-in-winter side of the insulation (toward the interior). For some warm and humid areas, vapor retarders if used should be installed outside the heating or building envelope. Check local practice and/or building codes before installation. In steel stud construction, insulation is friction fitted into stud cavities prior to applying the interior finish. Foil faced products used in wood stud construction should be stapled approximately every 8" (200 mm) with the vapor retarder facing the conditioned space. Foil facings are combustible; do not use in exposed applications. Check local code requirements as these installation recommendations are general in nature. Other installation methods may be acceptable. Please consult your contractor for recommendations best suited to a specific application.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Thanks Jerry! That is what I read also but was looking for support and you gave it to me!

    Jim


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Jim,

    Just making sure you also noticed the sentence just before the one I made bold: "with the vapor retarder facing the conditioned space.", i.e., the "warm in winter" side as the codes used to say it.

    They need to remove the foil facing and strap the insulation up (no need to remove the insulation, just the facing, of course that is what is holding the insulation up, so they would then need to install some type of means to hold the insulation up tight against the subfloor (where it likely is not, likely another item for your report).

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    I was under the impression that the foiled side went against the subflooring. Are you saying that it does not?


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM MURPHY View Post
    I was under the impression that the foiled side went against the subflooring. Are you saying that it does not?
    What I'm saying is that IF there is a facing, the facing (the foil side in this case) goes against the subflooring ...

    However, being as there is no requirement for a facing or vapor retarder, instead of taking the insulation down, just remove the problem - remove the foil facing.

    Two choices: a) remove and flip the insulation so the foil facing is against the subfloor; b) remove the foil facing. I know which I would do if it was mine.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Thanks Jerry, I had to laugh. You are exactly right and logic stands to reason!

    Jim


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Agreed that it is installed incorrectly, but the paper will burn as well as the insulation when exposed to an ignition source. And where is there a potential ignition source in that crawl space ?
    Typically bat insulation with a 6 mil plastic vapor barrier attached to the joists gives the best performance.


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil brody View Post
    And where is there a potential ignition source in that crawl space ?
    The same answer to that as to a contractor last week about fireblocking vertical concealed spaces to horizontal concealed spaces (vertical framed column to horizontal landing space at stair tower): The code requires fireblocking at ALL concealed spaces at floor, ceiling, and where vertical and horizontal spaces meet - *I* am not going to be the person responsible for NOT requiring fireblocking in an area where fire can spread from one area to another ... such as a lightning strike - *I* would prefer the fireblocking to restrict the fire to the area of origin.

    With the faced insulation ... use your imagination and think of all the things you've seen stored in a crawlspace, or things which could be stored in a crawlspace, or of a lightning strike ... *I* am not going to be the one who goes against the manufacturer and says that it is no problem to leave the facing exposed.

    By the way, ever seen a crawlspace with NO electrical wiring in it? That is a very good ignition source when things go wrong with the wiring.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    The same answer to that as to a contractor last week about fireblocking vertical concealed spaces to horizontal concealed spaces (vertical framed column to horizontal landing space at stair tower): The code requires fireblocking at ALL concealed spaces at floor, ceiling, and where vertical and horizontal spaces meet - *I* am not going to be the person responsible for NOT requiring fireblocking in an area where fire can spread from one area to another ... such as a lightning strike - *I* would prefer the fireblocking to restrict the fire to the area of origin.

    With the faced insulation ... use your imagination and think of all the things you've seen stored in a crawlspace, or things which could be stored in a crawlspace, or of a lightning strike ... *I* am not going to be the one who goes against the manufacturer and says that it is no problem to leave the facing exposed.

    By the way, ever seen a crawlspace with NO electrical wiring in it? That is a very good ignition source when things go wrong with the wiring.
    Well certainly if there was ignition source that would have to be a consideration. As far as a lightning strike err... But an important consideration in just removing the foil facing. The insulation will then be open to absorb moisture from the crawl space and reduce its effectiveness. Typically that's why you find it laying on the floor after some time even with the insulation springs.


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil brody View Post
    Well certainly if there was ignition source that would have to be a consideration. As far as a lightning strike err... But an important consideration in just removing the foil facing. The insulation will then be open to absorb moisture from the crawl space and reduce its effectiveness. Typically that's why you find it laying on the floor after some time even with the insulation springs.
    Phil,

    You asked "And where is there a potential ignition source in that crawl space ?" so I gave you a start on thinking about it - NOTHING should be written off. Your question indicated that you were having difficulty in thinking of ignition sources in a crawlspace - I just tried to open the box you put yourself in so you could see outside of it and see some light.

    Kevin Wood confirmed one of the ignition sources which is in most crawlspaces.

    The likely reason that insulation is laying on the floor is not because there was moisture in the insulation from the ground, it would be from moisture being trapped in the insulation coming from within the house. The ground should be covered with plastic sheeting moisture barrier anyway whenever there is a moisture problem (I inspected many older crawlspace houses in South Florida years ago and only a few had a moisture barrier covering the ground ... we got to crawl around in the dirt under those houses ... and no moisture problems either.

    A vapor barrier is not required, but if one is installed, then it should be installed toward the conditioned space (the old saying in the code was the "warm in winter side").

    The main reason insulation falls is: a) it was not installed up tight against the flooring above; b) it was not properly supported so it would not fall down; c) workers pulled it down to do work (wiring, plumbing, ducts, framing, etc.) and did not re-install the insulation they pulled down.

    Kind of like finding all the diagonal 'X' braces nailed at their tops to the top of the floor joists, but no one every nailed the bottoms of those diagonal braces, making those diagonal braces useless.

    Things happen for a reason, and many times the reason is not what 'was done' but what 'was not done' - in the case in the insulation, it 'was not properly installed and supported' is the likely reason it is laying on the crawlspace floor ... unlike in the attic, gravity is not working for you in holding the insulation in place in a crawlspace, gravity is working against you, better and more supports are required to offset gravity or ... or gravity will win.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Certainteed Foil faced insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Heiler View Post
    Jim; it may be radiant barrier, which works best shinny side down. Can you google the product name?
    The face of the insulation whether it be paper foil it is to go towards the conditioned space When you say foil works best downward this is for attics not crawl spaces How about this Did an inspection attic foil insulation side down but installed over knob and tube wiring


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