One Word: Insulation!

One of the main issues we KNEW we would run into with our 120 year old farmhouse was insulation — or rather the lack of insulation!

We were hopeful that the previous owners took the time to insulate the house during their many renovations — but they didn’t :(

So, since we’re in the middle of gutting several rooms, we figured now would be the best time to install a bunch of insulation — which is a great investment considering how cold West Michigan winters can be!

And believe it or not, the first place we put insulation was under the floors. We have 2 different crawl spaces in our basement and both are REALLY cold because they don’t have any heat flowing through them and they extend all the way to the outside walls.

So, all that freezing cold air was right under our bedroom and bathroom — which made the floors just a bit chili {like so cold you couldn’t walk on them without socks and slippers!}

Here’s the first crawl space:

The opening in the basement was too small to fit through {no we’re not fat, the opening was just really small} so we had to cut a hole in the floor of the master bedroom to get down there!

This is looking down into the hole — it’s only one or two feet deep the whole way across!

I’m so claustrophobic I don’t even like thinking about it; so thankfully, my dad was willing to get down there and install the insulation.  Thanks dad!

And this is looking a little further down through the crawl space. It runs under our master bedroom, bathroom, and guest bedroom so it took a while to install all the insulation…and my dad was down there the entire time!

My dad said there were a few times when he got “wedged in” and started to feel claustrophobic so he just relaxed, closed his eyes, and took a deep breath…then kept going. Seriously, I probably would be dead right now if I had to do that!

Oh, and that black plastic is a vapor barrier the previous homeowners put over the dirt floor to keep any moisture out of the crawl space — let’s hope it works!

And Here’s Crawl Space #2

This opening was actually big enough to fit through {barely}…and it was almost 3 feet tall so we could crawl around a little easier. {Notice the really cool old basement walls!}

I stayed outside and fed insulation through the hole to my dad who was inside.

This crawl space covered a lot less area {and we cleaned all that junk out} so it wasn’t nearly as bad as the other crawl space — but I still wouldn’t get inside!

It took 2 longs days but thanks to my un-claustrophobic dad, our floors are now insulated, and we’re ready to get started on the rest of our renovations!

Next up — windows.

3 comments to One Word: Insulation!

  • Julie

    Its such a thanksless job isn’t it? I mean, you know it done, it will serve you well(keep the heating bills down, while keeping you warm). But, it’s not something that you can really show anyone nor does it have aesthetic appeal. We replaced our windows (1/2 this year, 1/2 last year) and while it has made a huge difference in our comfort level and a bit of a difference in our heating bills, no one can really tell. Not that anyone is trying to showoff, but gosh it would be nice to SEE something for the effort and money put forth. Know what I mean?
    Can’t wait to see the first part of the renovation.

    Andrea
    Twitter: FarmhouseLove
    Reply:

    Yes, very “thankless” but also very necessary — so I’m glad it’s done! We are doing windows next — so that will be another thankless job, but WE know it’s done and it’s another project of our list!! But you’re night, no one else will notice or care.

    I wish we could do more of the “fun” projects like painting, adding trim, and staining the hardwood floors, but first-things-first I suppose. One thing at a time! Eventually it will all be finished and we’ll have a beautiful old farmhouse…eventually!

  • [...] so this is kind of a crazy one, but we’ve spent a chunk of money adding lots more insulation to our OLD home. Hopefully it will save us a bunch in the years ahead — and I did get a rebate from [...]