Finally got up into my attic today to poke around and see what was what.
Yes, I bought my house two years ago, but never had a reason to go up
into the attic before. The reason I was going up there was to assess
what I had to do to add a ceiling fan in the bathroom.
Good news: ceiling of 2nd floor appears to be framed with 2x6's, and I
mean real old-school 2x6's not what passes for same today. Also roof
was scratch built, no trusses, so even though I have a tiny house, the
attic space could actually be usable for storage if it became necessary.
Bad news: as is normal practice, the ceiling joists run crossways across
the house and tie into the rafters, unlike the lower floors where the
1st and 2nd floor floor joists run the length of the house (spliced
above a load bearing wall next to the central stairwell.) I was
surprised to find this, however, because it makes my proposed fan
install more difficult, and because I actually had reason to believe
that it wouldn't be like this (see below.)
Why I thought my house was framed oddly:
In the master bedroom, the ceiling has several parallel cracks running
exactly parallel to the long dimension of the house. They are very
evenly spaced about 13-14" apart. I ASSumed that this was due to wet
insulation (the roof was replaced by the POs of the house) causing
excessive load on the ceiling between the joists, but the cracks are
running perpendicular to the joists. Also the insulation is bone dry,
but that doesn't tell me anything as it's had several years to dry out.
The wall/ceiling construction in this house is plaster over gypsum
lath. Any ideas as to what this cracking could indicate?
Finally, my immediate issue and reason for being in the attic was to try
to plan the install of a vent fan for the bathroom. Since I'd thought
that the ceiling joists would run lengthwise, my initial plan was to
simply install the fan between two joists in the bathroom ceiling, point
the outlet towards the side wall of the house, and cut a dryer-vent type
vent hood on the outside wall, connecting the two with a straight
piece of duct. Obviously, since the joists run perpendicular to the
direction that I suspected that they did, I can not do this, at least
not easily (I'd have to cut a 4" hole in a 6" board until I got to the
side of the house, which would probably indicate reinforcing each joist
with angle iron or similar, that's a lot of work.) My house does not
have any soffits at all - the roof ends just past the edge of the
exterior wall, so I can't use a soffit vent. I do not want to cut a
hole in the roof for a roof vent, as it is this weird pressed aluminum
stuff that I guess is supposed to emulate the look of cedar shakes. So
that leaves me back to my original plan which would be to go out through
the side wall. But to do this now would involve two 90 degree bends in
the ductwork (I suppose I might be able to get away with a 45 and a 90)
and the ductwork would be above the joists meaning that I would have to
then use insulated duct. No big deal, but would the extra bends in the
ductwork cause an issue, and should I then uprate the CFM of the fan?
The bath is 5'x7' including the bath/shower area (yes, it *is*
house, why do you ask?) so I was figuring on a 50CFM fan, specifically
one of these:
(this one was the one I was thinking I was going to use when I thought
that the joists ran lengthwise, so I could hide everything below the top
of the ceiling joists, should I ever decide to floor that part of the
attic for whatever reason.)
(this one is higher profile, but quieter. If I have to run ductwork
above "floor" level, I'd choose this one.)
thoughts, comments, concerns?
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
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