Radiant Barrier Foil Installation Pictures & Tips

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radiant barrier foil radiant barrier installation
Easy Installation with only a Staple Gun and a Utility Knife. Heavy foil will stay up with just a few staples. Finished Attic Space
attic batt insulation radiant barrier foil
Over Attic Before Blowing Insulation over Batts Covering Exposed Batt Insulation that Cause "Hot Walls"
radiant barrier film radiant barrier foil
Note gap in top ridge for proper ventilation Sidwall Application
attic insulation radiant barrier foil
Don't worry about the hard-to-reach lower corners. Just get the big easy open areas. Remember to leave ventilation gaps at the top of each rafter run.

How To Install Radiant Barrier Foil?
There are two basic methods to install radiant barrier. For cold climates, laying across the floor of the attic is best and for warm climates, stapling to the bottom of the roof rafters or laying over existing insulation are both good install methods.

Floor Application (warm OR cold climates):

  • Make sure you have good lighting in the attic.
  • Existing insulation should be level and have no bare spots.
  • Start in the far corners of the attic and work towards the exit
  • Roll out foil in sections and cut around supports, penetrations etc.
  • Overlap foil approx 3-4 inches. You can secure the pieces with foil tape.
  • If air ducts are on the attic floor, cover them too.
  • Use a pole or a "grabber" to push foil under hard to reach areas.

Rafter Application (warm climates):

  • Make sure you have good lighting in the attic.
  • Measure out long pieces of foil and run across the rafters. A helper works best!
  • Start at the bottom near the soffits and work up.
  • Use 3 - 5 staples for each 48" section of rafter.
  • Cut around electrical connections.
  • Leave a gap / opening at the top of each rafter for ventilation. See pictures
  • Leave at least 12" area around wind turbines, static vents and attic fans.

Sidewall Application:
Radiant Barrier Foil works great for eliminating "Hot Walls". These are walls that you can see from walk-in attics or drop down walls inside the attic. Often, you can see the batt insulation. This is common in 1 1/2 story homes. The heat from the roof is radiating into the insulation on the floor AND the sidewalls of the second floor walls. By installing Radiant Barrier Foil on the sidewalls these rooms tend to be instantly more comfortable.

  • Make sure you have good lighting in the attic.
  • Start at the bottom and have a helper pull the foil across the entire length of the wall to keep it level.
  • WATCH OUT FOR ELECTRICAL WIRES!! Be carful not to staple into them!!!
  • Staple the top edge along the entire length of the wall. The foil should how "hang" down.
  • Use 3 - 5 staples on each wall stud to attach foil. You can "feel" where the wall studs are.
  • Repeat until you reach the top of the wall. Fold excess foil over the top of the wall to help contain insulation.


batt insulation in walls insulated walls
BEFORE Applying Radiant Barrier Foil on Sidewall AFTER Applying Radiant Barrier Foil on Sidewall