Sidewall Insulation

  1. Pre-Installation Requirements: Before starting the work, Mass Save Contractor must conduct an interior and exterior inspection to identify the potential problem areas. Examples include recessed radiators, ductwork in wall cavities, recessed bookshelves, stairways on exterior walls, loose or cracked plaster on walls, poor siding, pocket doors, chimneys, etc. Wall hangings should be removed before working on walls. The process and the work to be done must be first communicated to the CUSTOMER. Any potential problems identified should be discussed with a CUSTOMER before starting the work.
  2. Examine cavity or framing detail for wiring, piping, or ductwork. Do not dense pack ductwork or space having unsealed ductwork, or isolate plumbing from the house – if a sealed barrier incessant to adjacent airtight cavities or building element. Provide wood or foam plugs insheathing. Repair openings made in weather barrier, replace siding, and refasten with matching or larger fasteners. Touch up nail holes with silicone-based sealant.
  3. Installation Procedures
  • All wall insulation shall be installed through holes with minimum diameters of 2 1/8” or greater, i.e. it should accommodate a fill tube. Exception: wall cavities less than 12” in height
  • The use of a fill tube to ensure steady insulation coverage and density is strongly encouraged. Usually, one hole is required per cavity, located to allow the fill to reach both ends of the cavity, with additional holes required if there are obstructions in the wall cavity. 
  • Mass Save Contractor shall only use equipment compatible with the insulation material used or an all-fiber machine. Mass Save Contractor shall follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for air pressure and density to achieve dense pack standards. Most small airlock machines are suitable if designed and maintained to provide at least 80 inches of water column or 2.9 PSI static air pressure when operated at full air with the outlet blocked and no feed. A dense pack requires at least 3.5 pounds per cubic foot or higher with a cavity depth over 4”. 
  • Keep a record of the number of bags used to insure the installed insulation conforms to the manufacturer’s recommended coverage shown on the material label, 1 pound per square foot for 2×4 wall framing. Certificate of Insulation that lists the bag counts for each area that was insulated must be posted upon completion of work. 
  • Do not leave open holes in the wall overnight. Any holes must be plugged before Mass Save Contractor leaves the worksite. All drilled wood surfaces must be plugged with a wooden plug. Other drilled holes may be plugged with Styrofoam plugs.
  1. Drill and Plug (D&P) Applications

Follow the below process for exterior drill and plug applications on painted surfaces:

  • After installation, insert a plug so it is flush or slightly (1/16″) recessed. At the edge, irregularities apply one or two coats of an exterior rated filler (Durham Rock Hardwood putty, DAP exterior vinyl spackling, or equivalent.)
  • This procedure applies to the drill and plug applications on windowsills, frieze boards, and entrances.

Note: Drilling window sills leads to serious water intrusion risk if is not watertight and should not be applied where a pan flashing or sill wrap is in place. Do not drill sills on homes built after 1990. Foam or urethane sealant below the surface plug can affect water entry but cannot return the integrity of pan flashing.

  • Do exterior drill and plug applications on stained surfaces as below:
    • After installation, insert a plug so that is it flush with the existing siding. The plug should be installed by placing a block of wood over the plug and tapping it until the plug is flush with the siding.
  • Do Interior drill and plug applications as per below:
    • After installation, insert a plug so that it is (3/8″) recessed. Apply 1-2coats of setting joint compound, Durabond 90 or equal, patching material or a plaster repair product filling just flush to the existing surface. 
    • Some examples include exterior walls (not completed from the outside), stairway walls, garage ceilings, and slopes.

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