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I have a small walk (crouch)-in attic from the closet of one of my upstairs bedrooms. It has insulation on the walls that form the bedroom closet/wall. Given how small the attic is, whenever I go in there and place/remove things I tend to brush up against the insulation pulling it out from between the studs (see pictures below).

Insulation 1

Insulation 2

Insulation 3

I plan on stapling plastic to the studs to hold the insulation in. Is there an issue with this plan?

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Plastic isn't recommended in this situation because it would create a second vapor barrier that can trap moisture and result in condensation and mold. Craft paper would have the same problem, this is what is most likely on the other side of the insulation for the vapor barrier you want.

The good solution for this is a house wrap material (often referred to by the popular commercial brand Tyvek) which allows vapor to pass through while blocking water itself on the outside of the home.

You can also put up a thin board, plywood, or even drywall, if the goal is simply to prevent accidental contact. If you already installed plastic, then cutting some slits to vent air both high and low in each wall cavity may prevent any condensation issues.

  • Kraft paper is a vapor retarder, not a vapor barrier. – iLikeDirt Jan 20 '16 at 20:13
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  • "What... can I put over the insulation...?

fire-resistant craft paper

enter image description here

  • Should I put insulation in between the rafters?

NO, it's not a "living space", why spend $ insulating it?

  • Is this the only material or are there other options? What about something like thick plastic sheeting? And wouldn't insulating the rafter's mean less heat escaped in the winter and got in in the summer? – derNincompoop Oct 15 '15 at 1:46
  • Regarding this product, see the vapor concerns in the other answers. – isherwood Jan 20 '16 at 14:31
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For covering the fiberglass & pushing it back to the studs 1/4" foam board insulation will fix it up right. It'll still let the house breathe correctly (plastic sheeting won't) & get everything clean & tight. Screw it in sparingly with either large washers or thin galvanized metal strapping to keep the wall flat & the foam board from ripping due to abnormal bulge force around the door.

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If you aren't worried about touching the insulation, and just want to make sure it stays in place, nylon cord or twine stapled across each bay in a zig-zag pattern will be one of your easiest approaches. I've got this in a few places in my house.

Covering the whole wall in any kind of sheeting or additional insulation can cause moisture problems. You never want more than one vapor barrier. Plastic sheets, fire paper, and foam-board are all vapor barriers or retarders.

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