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The initial application of blanket insulation is only part of the job. Many attic spaces contain pipework that needs to be protected from freezing during winter months. Insulating warm water heating or supply pipes will also save energy.
Many people want to use part of their attic space for storage purposes. This often means you need to build up the joist height to accommodate building boards, which provide a base for storage. Alternatively, storage decking is a 2-in-1 application that combines extra insulation with a rigid board for storage. Check the board sizes beforehand to make sure that they will fit through your attic hatch.
Using Sheep's Wool
As with the recycled non-itch alternative shown opposite, sheep's wool is a more user-friendly alternative to conventional material. Build up depth by laying subsequent layers at right angles to the preceding layer. Check the instructional literature for depth requirements.
Custom-made pipe insulation is the best option. It can be bought in different diameters, depending on need. Split the pipe insulation along its length to slip over the pipe (Image 1). Keep the join facing upward. Although pipe insulation is non-itch, you should wear gloves to protect yourself from the blanket insulation.
Take care that each length is tightly butt-joined to the next one, so that no part of the pipe is exposed.
Hold the pipe insulation in position by taping it, or by using proprietary clips as shown here. (Image 2)
At corners, it is still necessary to keep a tight join. Use a miter box and fine-toothed saw to make accurate 45-degree cuts.
Make sure that the mitered sections of insulation meet precisely to avoid any gaps.
Secure the insulation in position using tape or clips (Image 3). Note how the corner has been secured with an extra clip across the miter. For any valves or stop taps, wrap the pipe with insulation but leave the valve handle exposed.
Cut wedges of blanket to insulate the join of the roof rafters and floor joists, but with non-breathable felt leave a gap behind the wedge (Image 1).
Lay the first board across the joists (Image 2). Butt the edge of the board up against the rafters. Be sure not to close the gap behind the wedge of insulation.
To hold the deck in position, use one screw to fix each section to the joist below. Board ends should join on joists (Image 3).
Glue the board edges with woodworking adhesive, then fit the boards together using their tongue-and-groove system.
Excerpted from Do It Yourself Home Improvement
© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2009