I am a new house owner since July of 2014. I bought a 50 year old house with good bones and a great opportunity to flip it.

My attic has a pathetic R5 insulation at the moment. Being a young home owner and this being my first house, I was eligible for a government grant. They pay the materials as long as I do all the work. This being said, the work needs to be done right or else I don't get a cent!

My first concern is all the wiring in the attic. How hard does cellulose become when it's 'dried'? Does it stay mushy and malleable or does it become like polyurethane and get solid as a rock? I will need to go back into the attic some day and start rewiring a couple things, will this be easily doable with cellulose all over the place?

Secondly, I have no roof vents or anything. The only thing coming out of my roof is my chimney. I have no bathroom fans, kitchen fans, nothing. How hard will it be to install this after the cellulose is done?

2 Answers 2


First with the wiring... I would try to get most or all of your electrical work done before doing the blow in. I am currently waiting in my attic until I finish my 1st floor pot lights.

When you are up in an attic and wires are criss-crossing going everywhere it is really hard to pin down what is what and even find the same line 30 feet away. Add in insulation and it is next to impossible. Yes it can be moved. The blown in stuff is basically like soft bread crumbs. But when you move it, you are just creating a pile somewhere else you might need to go. Working with electricity in a hot attic with tons of insulation is one of the worst things on my list.

As far as venting, the insulation doesn't matter at all. If you are cutting a ridge vent you do it from the top and any pipes are easy to navigate through insulation.

  • Most of my wiring is done, I'm just thinking ahead. If I'd like to put recess lights in the kitchen eventually, I wanted to make sure I wasn't shooting my self in the foot.
    – Alex
    Sep 23, 2014 at 16:51

Blown-in cellulose insulation is fluffy stuff. It doesn't harden. You can shovel it out of the way if you need to work in the attic; you just need to redistribute it evenly back into place when you're done. So it makes working in that space something of a nuisance, but not worse than that.

(Assuming a traditional attic. If yours is a low-roof crawlspace, moving the blown-in around may be more of a problem, just because there's less space to move it into.)

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