Morris Heat and Air Attic Hatch

Home Sealing – Attic Hatch Installation

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My name is John Morris with Morris Heat and Air in Okmulgee Oklahoma. As of 2017, we are Okmulgee‘s only BPI Certified home performance based company and offer home performance testing and duct testing using pressurization and depressurization. In this post I will be discussing a very big issue with homes in Northeast Oklahoma involving leakage through the ceiling that communicates directly with an unconditioned attic space.  Air infiltration occurs in many areas of your home, but one of the worst areas of air infiltration occurs through attic hatch access points located in the ceiling of your home.

Access to the attic space can be found within the living space and tucked away in the ceiling of a small closet, large room or bathroom. Roughly 90% of all residential homes in Northeast Oklahoma have a shingle based roof that generates a tremendous amount of heat for the attic space. It is this 120-130 degree attic air that should be a primary concern of all heat, air and home performance companies. When an access point to the attic is located within your home, it is very important to keep this 120-130 degree air out of your home for several reasons. First, 120-130 degree air from the attic can cause you to feel extremely uncomfortable within your home. Second, when 120-130 degree air is introduced to your home, your air conditioner will turn on to condition this air to your desired setpoint on the thermostat. All too often, I find an opening to the attic within the thermal boundary of the home. These access points usually have nice trim around them with either a piece of plyboard or drywall cut out to naturally rest on the trim. This is an avenue for attic air to infiltrate into your home and an important repair to be made when sealing the home.

We resolve to repair air infiltration by constructing a more intelligent attic hatch that has a minimum R-24 closed cell foam insulation barrier and an air tight gasket designed to aleviate any air from infiltrating into the home. We begin our construction by framing in the size opening we want for our new attic hatch.

Attic Access Points Within A Home Are Prime Areas of Air Infiltration
This pre-existing attic access point in the ceiling of this home in Henryetta utilizes trim to hold a sheet of uninsulated drywall in place. It is an example of what not to do and needs to be replaced by a more intelligent design that is insulated and air tight.

This particular attic opening is already framed in by 2x4s and the trim is forming the small lip for the drywall to rest on. We have several tools that we use to construct the new hatch including an air compressor, a brad nail gun, a portable band saw, screw gun and sharpie marker.

Tools Required To Construct An Energy Efficient Attic Hatch
Morris Heat and Air uses tools like these to construct an attic hatch that will prevent air infiltration from the attic space into your home. Pictured in this image is a portable band saw, a brad nail gun, an air compressor and a pilot drill bit.

We have several materials needed for constructing a new attic hatch for your home. We use 1×2 and 1×4 trim, latches, screws, foam, plyboard and gaskets.

Materials Used To Construct An Attic Hatch
Morris Heat and Air uses trim wood and plyboard to construct the framework of an attic hatch. Latches and gaskets are added to make the attic hatch air tight.

Once everything is constructed and air tight, we remove the attic hatch top and apply a layer of closed cell foam that exceeds R-19.

Closed Cell Foam Applied To The Top Side Of The Attic Hatch
Closed Cell Foam is applied to the top side of the attic hatch to increase the R Value of the attic hatch. By Increasing the R Value of the hatch, hot air from the attic is unable to radiate into the living space of your home.

Once everything is fully constructed the latches are installed without the gasket and the gasket is then applied to the bottom stationary half of the new hatch. Then the attic hatch top is installed and latched so that it is tightly pressed against the gasket. Now we have gone from an uninsulated, unsealed attic access point to a fully sealed and insulated latchable hatch!

Before, During, and After Photos Of An Attic Hatch Installed By Morris Heat and Air
Before, during, and after photos of an attic hatch constructed by Morris Heat and Air

Upon completion, we can paint the hatch to match the interior or stain it to your desired flavor. The fact is that attic air needs to stay in the attic and conditioned air needs to stay within the home. There are so many problems that plague a home’s ability to perform efficiently, open holes into the attic from within the home is definitely one of the worst. Morris Heat and Air specializes in sealing homes and duct systems to IECC Code. We carry all of the equipment designed to thoroughly diagnose problems with leakage and have even more equipment to fix leakage in homes and duct systems. Though attic access points are definitely a problem, there are hundreds more that need to be identified and repaired if a home is to be sealed properly. Morris Heat and Air offers 0% interest financing options for up to 72 months on all whole home performance upgrades and is available 24 hours a day to be contacted about the repair of your home. Not only does home sealing offer a more comfortable home, but it also prolongs the life of your heat and air equipment and lowers your utility cost. Though sealing your home is important, sealing your duct system is equally important as well. Call us today and schedule an appointment to have a BPI Certified Energy Analysis conducted on your home by our staff at Morris Heat and Air. Once an Energy Analysis is conducted, a thorough diagnosis of all problems and a scope of work can be established to fix your home.

 

 

Written by:

John Morris

owner: Morris Heat and Air

1001 S Bryan St

Okmulgee, OK 74447

(918) 734-0040

morrisheatandair@gmail.com

Morris Heat and Air Company Logo with Website and Phone Number
Morris Heat and Air offers air conditioner, furnace and floor furnace repair in Tulsa, Okmulgee and Lake Eufala areas. Our logo serves as a symbol of excellence for all of our services offered in Northeast Oklahoma.