previous
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • Design Inspiration
    Design Inspiration
  • Radiant Heat Comparison
    Radiant Heat Comparison
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • Video: Install a Fence
    Video: Install a Fence
  • Ultimate Deck Build 2015
    Ultimate Deck Build 2015
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • Deck Design & Construction
    Deck Design & Construction
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
  • Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
    Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • Remodeling Articles
    Remodeling Articles
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • Find the Pitch of a Roof
    Find the Pitch of a Roof
next
Pin It

Home Energy Diet for an Old Victorian

Sealing the crawlspace and plugging holes cut a big home's heating bill in half

Even though the task might seem insurmountable, it's possible to rein in the energy losses of an old, leaky house. It just takes a lot of hard work, as contractor Jeff Tooley demonstrates in this project. This 2800-sq.-ft. Victorian was uncomfortably cold every winter, and to make it more energy smart, Tooley and his crew worked from the bottom up. They began their work by sealing the crawlspace with a variety of products, including polyethylene sheeting, polyisocyanurate insulation, reinforced poly vapor retarder, and caulk. After the crawlspace was finished, they began sealing framing cavities, using three techniques: plugging the cavities with rigid foam held in place with spray foam; sealing the kneewall floor with flexible foam; and filling the joist cavity with spray foam. Finally, they added attic insulation, including spray foam and loose-fill cellulose. They also had an HVAC contractor install a fresh-air supply to the mechanicals room. Where necessary, Tooley and his crew cut access holes as part of their retrofit work. 

Home Energy Diet for an Old Victorian
Plus get a free gift
Become a Fine Homebuilding Member. Start your free trial now
Next Article
Next Article: Online Membership Required