Wet insulation in the attic can be dried out with the help of a fan or a dehumidifier. For some attics, you can remove the wet batts and keep them in a warm area to dry out. After a few weeks, you will need to monitor the insulation.
In other cases, there might be a leak in your pipes. Regardless, now your cellulose insulation is wet! If you're wondering how long it takes for it to dry, we've researched this to find out. In an ideal circumstance, cellulose insulation should take around 24-48 hours to dry.
However, when moisture fills the air pockets between the fibers, the insulation loses its ability to slow the transfer of heat. After all, water is a conductor, so wet fiberglass insulation is about as effective as no insulation at all. To help fiberglass insulation dry out, place a dehumidifier or fan in the area.
A dehumidifier could be the perfect solution for drying out the air in your attic. Be sure, however, to drain it frequently in order to sustain its usefulness. A dehumidifier will cease to remove any more moisture once its storage tank becomes full.
Open the windows at the first sign of moisture, and use fans to help speed drying. Throw away any insulation or other materials that are wet or show signs of mildew, but be sure to replace them immediately. A dehumidifier can also help remove moisture from the attic fairly quickly.
If the insulation became wet from water that contained any contaminates such as flood water and sewage, then the affected insulation and the wallboard are likely ruined, and both materials need to be removed as soon as possible.
Wet insulation means trapped moisture that will slowly degrade the entire roofing system, from the decking to the building itself. Trapped moisture encourages corrosion of roofing fasteners and rusting of steel studs and wall ties, which reduce wind-uplift ratings.
Wet insulation can become a health risk. If insulation is left wet for long enough, mold and bacteria will start to grow in it. This severely decreases air quality and can lead to major health risks.
The Problems with Fiberglass Insulation in Crawl Spaces
While fiberglass actually doesn't absorb moisture (the individual fibers are made from water and recycled glass), it does hold moisture, which can be very bad.
There are a few ways that insulation in the home can have an adverse health effect. Insulation can make you ill in a variety of ways, often presenting some allergies or the flu. Improper Installation--This could be poorly installed or hung insulation, or simply using the wrong material in the wrong space.
When you look for mold on your insulation, you'll notice a thin grey or black layer on the top of the insulation. Mold growth can be harmful to your health. If there is significant mold growth on your attic insulation, removal and replacement is recommended.
You are more likely to find mold on the top surface of attic insulation sheets, and you might see the spores or growth on settled dust. This growth can happen with leaky roofs and looks like a black or thin, spotty gray layer spread out in different patterns.
When portions of insulating material harbor mold spores, then you should replace it. Even if the material dries out, mold spores can become airborne and travel to other wet areas of the house. If you catch it early enough, then you'll only need to replace a small section of material, keeping your cost lower.
Once you have identified the moisture problem and you have taken steps to correct it, you can place a dehumidifier in the attic. The dehumidifier will draw out the moisture, but you must drain them often. Dehumidifiers do not work when their storage tank is full.
Fiberglass, a non-biodegradable substance is resistant to mold. With its sharp, ground glass, mold spores puncture before they can attach to it. Mold can grow on the fiberglass insulation backing, which is made of paper and is a mold food source. Fiberglass insulation without backing may be the best choice.
If the insulation gets very wet, it can be compressed by the weight of the water and it may not recover to its original thickness, meaning it will not perform as well to trap the heat flow between inside and outside.
Drying Out a Wet Attic
Placing a dehumidifier inside the attic will help to draw out moisture from the surrounding environment. However, you'll need to drain it frequently in order for it to function properly. Once the dehumidifier's storage tank is full, it won't be able to remove any more moisture.
Most of the time, the only area of the home that has to be treated is the attic and nowhere else. Mold in attics is very common and can usually be dealt with quickly and effectively. No need to panic and treat your home as if it's uninhabitable and beyond repair. Attic mold is caused by moisture and mildew issues.
Mildew (mold in early stage) and molds grow on wood products, ceiling tiles, cardboard, wallpaper, carpets, drywall, fabric, plants, foods, insulation, decaying leaves and other organic materials. Mold growths, or colonies, can start to grow on a damp surface within 24 to 48 hours.
In the attic, mold can degrade drywall, spread to the ceiling below, and even cause problems with your roof's life expectancy. Attic mold occurs in the attic primarily due to the accumulation of moisture from condensation in the gap your attic fills between your warm house and the cold air outside your roof.
Improperly Installed Attic Insulation Can Make You Sick
They have a sickening odor which can make people ill after long exposure. If your attic insulation was not installed properly, it is important to rectify the problem immediately to avoid serious health problems.
Most insulation is generally toxic and dangerous, especially when you're exposed to it for a long time. Fortunately, insulation is installed in ways that minimize exposure to these risks. However, improper insulation can cause irritation, pain, or severe long-term effects.
It's possible to over-insulate an attic as too much will cause moisture buildup and eventually result in mold. Eventually, adding more insulation leads to diminishing returns in trapping heat as well.