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insulating one room in an old farmhouse

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hello permies.... I have an old famhouse im renting ..heating with wood in the mts of va. I recently inherited a steinway grand piano which is in tip top shape and needs a climate controlled room humidity and temp to be relatively stable around 70 degrees... 30 humidity.... i plan to insulate or seal the rest of the house as I can get to it and I don't mind it cold but that one room must stay warm.. th ere is a half basement with crawlspace access from the basement to the 2 front rooms. Unfortunately the crawlspace inder the piano room looks inaccessable... very narrow and full of duct work. there is propane heat also but I think one of the ducts is no attached a mouse ate it or something... my thoughts are to use foam board insulation on the floor of the piano room... bubble wrap on the windows and foam board on the floor above. i would just lay the board on the floor and cover with carpet I probably will not walk on the board much at all I wpuld tape it together butuse no nails into the nice wood floors underneath. there are 2 outside walls that I could also use foam board or that reflectivebubblewrap I have half a mind to surronund the foundation with straw bales since the basement is freezing cold and remove the straw to use in the garden in spring.any ideas would be great Sam
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Hi Samiam,

Sounds like you though through a plane already and are just looking for feedback?

I think what you came up with, all in all, is probably the fastest and least expensive fix you could do in a rental.

I can give you a few tips on refining it, should you have the budget, as this is what I have done a few time for myself and friends in transient uninsulated spaces.

We covered the floors with 1" polyiso foam board, then floated a wood plank floor on that, (you could use 4x8 sheet good if you choose.) Nothing nailed down.

Walls and ceiling covered in same board, taped and covered with natural canvas painters cloth which can get painted if you choose, but the natural color is pleasant.

We hot glued magnets to the back of the boards that corresponded to washers screwed or glued to the walls and ceilings in key locations. One in each corner, and one in the middle.

For the foam, we used 2" on wall and 4" on ceiling. The room could be keep at 40 degree F with just to 150 watt light bulbs on most cold nights.

The entire space had a very "gypsy" feel to it from all the textiles, but was easy to do and move. The cloth was "sewn" to the walls in spots between the sheet foam by hot gluing a patch of felt to correspond to a space between the foam board, then just a quick "tuck stitching" to secure it. Imagination is your only limitation here, so you can go crazy with the design possibilities.

Hope that helps.


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