Tag Archives: Home repair

Torn down

Abigail wanted a new bedroom and that’s what she is going to get!  Emily’s Dad, Emily, and Abigail tore up the carpet and tack strips and I demolished the walls and ceiling.

Ripping up carpet

That sounds easy and mostly it was (I used a 16 pound hammer which made things go quickly) but it was filthy work.

Ripping up carpet

The other day, I said there was no insulation in her walls but I was wrong.  When our house was built in 1939, apparently it was pretty modern.  The builders used Kimsul insulation, made by Kimberly-Clarke.  Kimsul is made from bats of crepe paper impregnated with asphalt.  Apparently it was originally developed as an insulation for refrigerators, car dashboards and homes.  I am not much for old movies but Kimsul was popularized by Cary Grant in the movie, “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House”.  Mr Blandings didn’t have to go back in years later and deal with it though!

We dress down a little when we work on our house

We dress down a little when we work on our house…

Imagine 75 year old crepe paper exposed to numerous heating and cooling cycles.  It was packed down into a nearly flattened blanket so had no insulation value left (insulation only works if it is not compressed…it has to have dead air space to slow the transfer of heat).

Kimsul insulation is a mess

Whenever I touched the Kimsul, no matter how gently, it disintegrated and turned into Kim-snow.  It’s dirty-oil-brown, paper-like and all around miserable stuff.

Covered in insulation Dust mask covered in insulation

Emily and I wore dust masks and glasses so we were somewhat protected, but we still got pretty messy.  I just took a shovel and scooped up the old plaster and insulation into boxes and we carried it down to the trailer in preparation for a run to the landfill.  We are almost done with all of that so she should be back into her new and improved room in…oh…6-8 years!