Home>Discussions>INSULATION & HVAC>Help: my house is a swiss cheese of recessed lights!
4 posts / 0 new
Last post
tjwolf
Help: my house is a swiss cheese of recessed lights!

Hi everyone,
I purchased a 1999 4100sq foot ranch home that has 96 recessed lights and my heating bill is enormous ($540 in December - this is NJ).
I climbed into the attic and it is insulated with R30 - except where the recessed lights are. I don't see any labeling indicting that they're IC rated, so that's probably the reason. Anyway, out of each one of them, I can feel the warm air from the insulated space below.

What can I do?

I was thinking that I should get all of them replaced with sealed units (I hear that you can buy these? I don't mind if they require fluorescents or LED to avoid heat buildup). But I'm hesitant because I expect the cost to be enormous. Or is it? I am not handy and am not sure I could do the job myself.

Any suggestions on what to do would be very much appreciated.

foammaster
Re: Help: my house is a swiss cheese of recessed lights!

a easy way is to make a box out of 2" thick rigid board a little bigger than the light fixture. tape all the seams with foil tape, then replace all the light bulbs with compact fluorescents. or you can buy them, i'm sure it will be cheber to make them, you may want to contact [email protected] he does energy audits and in an insulation contractor. he told me about the "can tents"

hope that helps
JB

tjwolf
Re: Help: my house is a swiss cheese of recessed lights!

Thanks JB.
I think I came across the suggestion of putting a box around the light cans. But it struck me somehow as dangerous too: wouldn't hot air just build up inside the box? But I suppose if sealed cans can handle flourescent bulbs, so should a large box.

I wonder if these are available "ready made". Making 96 of these boxes isn't my idea of a good time (especially, given my non-existant mechanical skills :-( I will try the e-mail you gave me.

Again, thanks a bunch.
tom

tjwolf
Re: Help: my house is a swiss cheese of recessed lights!

I had a chat with Ray. Very friendly and pretty knowledgable. But his solution is to encase each can in an enclosure that would cost $50/light. I have nearly 100 recessed lights and can't see myself paying $5000 just to make some recessed lights air-tight. There must be a cheaper way!

How about replacing the current trim on each light with a "shower trim"? This would keep the warm air from even getting into the can?

Thanks for any further advice.

Sponsored Stories

TV Listings

Find TV listings for This Old House and Ask This Old House in your area.