Applying Thermal Barrier Paint On An Attic Roofline

A little while back I wrote a post about Sherwin Williams having a thermal barrier paint called E-Barrier. I decided to start my attic upgrade with this product. There are plans to seal up and increase the insulation up there, but to do this project without knowing where to step would probably double the time it took.

Cost Breakdown

5 gal. Sherwin Williams E-Barrier Paint $176.00
Painters suit 10.00
Paint sprayer rental 56.00
Total: $242.00

The person at Sherwin Williams didn’t want to shake the paint at the store because he didn’t want the aluminum in the paint to create a static charge. Instead I flipped the paint the day before to get all the particulates to the top of the bucket. The day we painted I used a drill and paint mixer for 5 minutes to incorporate the particulates and latex.

NOTE: When renting a paint sprayer for this project make sure it has the following specifications:

  • Pressure: 2000-2500 psi
  • Tip: .017″-.021″

The one I rented from Home Depot had an Airlessco 517 tip on the sprayer. According to Airlessco’s site this is a .017″ tip.

Preparation for the area included laying down some plastic I already had to protect the carpet, emptying the closet, donning a paint ventilation mask and putting on the painters suit.

Suiting Up For Painting
Suiting Up For Painting

Our house has two joined attic areas. The first one has all the duct work from the two A/C units on the roof.

First Attic Area - View 1
First Attic Area – View 1

Attic Area With A/C Ducts
Attic Area With A/C Ducts – View 2

I did a horizontal application pattern with some overspray.

It took about an hour to apply the paint to about 500 sqft. of attic space. One thing to remember is to stay hydrated when working in the attic. It was at least 10-15 degrees warmer than it was outside.

First Attic Area Finished
First Attic Area Finished – View 1

First Attic Area Finished
First Attic Area Finished – View 2

The second attic space over the master bedroom has more room to maneuver but there is more electrical work to watch out for.

Second Attic Area
Second Attic Area – View 1

Second Attic Area
Second Attic Area – View 2

The second attic area took another hour to spray. I learned a couple of tips from the first attic area:

  • Switch to spraying vertically near the bottom truss
  • Keep the spray gun 8″-12″ away from the target area
  • Use the camera to help identify where some areas were missed
Second Attic Area Finished
Second Attic Area Finished – View 1

Second Attic Area Finished
Second Attic Area Finished – View 2

4 thoughts on “Applying Thermal Barrier Paint On An Attic Roofline”

  1. How about results? Did you notice your AC not working as hard, lower electric bills, attic space cooler?

  2. I noticed a little improvement on my electric bill from the previous year, about 5%, but there are too many factors that could come into play for a 5% difference. So, in retrospect I would go with the foil over foam option stapled to the 2x4s. This would create an air barrier that act as extra insulation.

  3. The best approach for this attic would be to have 5-7″ of closed cell spray foam installed to the slopes of the roof and a few inches over the gable end walls. This approach would enclose all of your equipment in a truly conditioned space and eliminate the need for venting. Certainly more expensive but it would result in much improved comfort and reduced utility expenses.

  4. I wish I could afford that, but I am thinking about applying the double sided bubble foil. It will be time consuming because I’ll have to do a lot of material cuts, but living in Las Vegas I really want to reduce my summer electric bill.

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