need help evaluating insulation estimate & proposal!

i need help evaluating a proposal i recently got to insulate the converted attic on my one-story bungalow-type house, as well as the walls of the house itself. the footprint of the place is 31' by 42'. I live in the northeast. Here's what the contractor gave me: remove/dispose of existing knee-wall insulation: $337 install r-13 fiberglass knee-wall insulation: 771 air seal knee-wall and floor: 125 insulate & lock 4 knee-wall doors: 187 air-seal sills, open bays, pipes, wires in & attic & basement: 250 Dense pack cellulose r-19, 2nd floor slopes: 625 dense pack cellulose r-11, 2nd floor gable walls: 245 dense pack cellulose r-11, 1rst floor walls: 1221 overhead, profit, insurance: 673 total cost: 4,434
what do you think of this? are there any questions i can answer that'll help you help me evaluate the proposal? and is it normal for a contractor to break out "overhead, profit, insurance" the way this fellow has?
one thing that concerns me is that the attic has absolutely ZERO ventilation -- ie no vents anywhere -- and this contractor swears that by his method of sealing up the converted space, i don't need any. does that make sense?
thanks for any help you can give. i'm rather lost at sea in all this.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

\\ DONT USE THAT CONTRACTOR !! with no ventilation it will ruin your roof overheat your space and cause endless other hassles, obviously he doesnt know what he is doing.
insulation is easy why not price the materials and get friends to help you DIY
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Sounds really high to me plus ventilation is a good idea if its possible in this space. At least something.
I finished the second floor of a cape cod style house, added 700 sq ft of living space, a 40 foot shed dormer on back and 6' doghouse style dormers on front. My space was a little smaller than yours. Because I had some weird angles and odd spaces due to the dormers and knee walls I was considering that spray foam. I brought a contractor in. He recommended batts, like your considering and and gave me several good reasons. I said thanks for your time and advice. The batts are on sale at home cheapo and I'll just do it myself. He insisted on giving me an estimate. His estimate was, drum roll please............ $800 and some dollars. This was about 5 years ago. My materials alone from the borg was $800. His estimate was an installed price. It was a no brainer, I hired him on the spot. 3 guys, half day and the job was done. For me to do it myself it would have taken 6plus trips to the store just for the materials.
If they are close enough for you its http://www.synergyinsulation.com /
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No wrote:

Spray foam is likely a better choice as it minimizes air infiltration and is its own vapor barrier while its R value is higher.
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R11 for a ceiling is not much, you say converted, I asume its is already drywalled and 3.5"airspace. There is a Polyurethane foam of R7.2" sprayed in and Polyisocyanurate boards of R7.2" you could get R 25. But code for an attic or what you would need is apx R35 and optimal is R60. Review your choises, celulose will also settle 15-20% so R value installed wont be the same in a year. If it is still open the best would be stud down the ceiling as much as possible then foam it. The issue of airspace is another consideration. Being it is the attic ceiling and heat rises your payback on heating costs make it worth your time to not rush your decision. R11 is substandard for the ceiling and is not your only solution.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Yea, agreed. In my case there were too many small voids, knee walls, funny angles, etc. It would not have been possible to do, or at least practical, anything is possible. The company I referenced did a suburb job, used those Styrofoam thingeys to allow for ventilation, filled all the gaps, including stuffing insulation around the spaces around the windows. They left no mess around and were in and out in 3-4 hours. A first rate batt insulation job.
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i wish a place like synergyinsulation was around here, because from what you say and what i read on their site, it sounds like a good firm. this is not a job i want to do myself, having neither the time nor the inclination. and even the cost isn't that much of an issue. mainly, i just want it done right the first time or i'd just as soon not do it at all and stay out of the overheated upper space 8 months out of the year. The reason for the r-11 is that's all the room there is, unless i take the entire upstairs apart. no way to get more in there. so, if r-11 isn't going to cut it, then should i forget about it? as to the lack of vents, there is actually one school of thought that says you don't need em, if the sealing and insulation is done right. some guy in VT is at the head of this no-vent movement, eventho it flies in the face of conventional widsom, not to mention building codes. that said, i'm not convinced it's right. does anyone here know what a rough sq ft price for installed cellulose insulation might be?
No wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

absolutely vent espically if the insulation will lay directly on the backside of the roof sheathing. in such a case the temperature will skyrocket and ruin your roof. those applications require vents below and thin spacers to allow airflow to a upper exhaust vent.
worse moiasture from below can get trapped in a unvented space rotting your roof, this actually occured to a friend. need whole new roof and sheathing, his existing roof was just 10 years old.
your home is probably the biggest investment you will ever make.
if improperly or not vented at all a nosey home inspector may some day cause you BIG grief when you are trying to sell your home. using commonly accepted building practices has benefits...
but hey do as you please.
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actually the insulation will not "lay directly on the backside of the roof sheathing." the envelope consists of the floor, the knee wall, the slopes and the gable walls. iow, the insulation isn't going to be placed up against the ceiling.
i know people say the price is way high but i got the square footages from the contractor and the dense-pack cellulose works out to about $1.20 st foot. i think i saw where it usually goes from b/ .75 sq ft to $1.25 sq ft, so this is at the very top of the scale but not off the scale. otoh, the batts that are going to be used against the knee-wall comes to about $1.92 sq ft., and that does indeed seem way high.
i querried the fellow about the worth of R11 and really it is the only choice, given the space he has to work with. he said even tho it was low it'd be worth it.
thanks again to all those who've weighed in w/ their knowledge! and further thoughts are certainly welcome!
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

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