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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct. 25, 2007
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    Default Ceiling or no Ceiling in a southern climate?

    Building a barn in SC, where summers can be HOT!

    Would you put in a ceiling, and insulate above it, or would you keep it open to the roof line, and insulate that?

    Which is cooler? in southern mind opinions?

    I have seen both in the area, but would like to hear from people who live there,
    thanks



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    Deep South
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    Default

    Open to the roof with insulation up there. Also make sure you have roof vents and fans.
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2006
    Location
    Clemson, SC
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    867

    Default

    Moisture was a huge problem in the barn I leased with a ceiling. I lost count of how many times the bricks in the aisle looked like they'd been hosed down. There was typically a nice breeze through the barn and fans for all the stalls, so heat wasn't an issuem. I don't know if it was specifically the ceiling that caused the moisture, but it definitely didn't vent as well as the open barns I've boarded at down here.

    Also, make sure to put some kind of deterrent over the insulation. There's a really nice barn around here that didn't do that and the birds are constantly tearing down the insulation. It really detreacts from what is otherwise a pretty barn (on top of the obvious problems with birds tearing down insulation).
    A lovely horse is always an experience.... It is an emotional experience of the kind that is spoiled by words. ~Beryl Markham



  4. #4
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    Jul. 17, 2009
    Location
    south eastern US
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    Default

    Open through the rafters and good vents under the edges of the rafters and at each gable. You want the heat to vent out the top of the walls and get as much airflow as possible. I live in Georgia and my barn is open through the rafters with the top of the walls not meeting the bottom of the rafters leaving an open area for good air flow. I have no issues with rain water entering the barn and it stays well ventilated.
    "My biggest fear is that when I die my husband is going to try to sell all my horses and tack for what I told him they cost."



  5. #5
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    Oct. 25, 2007
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    Default

    Thanks all. I was leaning towards the open ceiling to the roof and thanks for all giving me the reasons why its important.

    Wondering about the deterrent for the insulation for the birds...what do you mean or what would you suggest?
    thanks.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2009
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    PA
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    I say lower ceilings because it keeps birds from moving in. Maybe have the ceilings lower, but high enough you can put in some fans? Those would deter birds, right?
    Tru : April 14, 1996 - March 14, 2011
    Thank you for everything boy.


    Better View.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul. 17, 2009
    Location
    south eastern US
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fivehorses View Post
    Thanks all. I was leaning towards the open ceiling to the roof and thanks for all giving me the reasons why its important.

    Wondering about the deterrent for the insulation for the birds...what do you mean or what would you suggest?
    thanks.
    I don't have a problem with birds nesting in my rafters. They roost in there occasionally but they are not a huge problem. I actually have more problem with squirrels wanting to nest in my wall voids.
    "My biggest fear is that when I die my husband is going to try to sell all my horses and tack for what I told him they cost."



  8. #8
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    Jan. 10, 2006
    Location
    Clemson, SC
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    Default

    I don't know how common the birds tearing down the insulation is, all I know is I would be livid if they were doing that to my barn.

    I don't think anything short of a small wire mesh (something like this http://www.twpinc.com/twpinc/control...y_id=TWPCAT_14) would deter them, but I'm sure there are other options. Fans and fake owls did nothing. Workers knocked down nests just about on a daily basis. I haven't boarded there for years but went out with a friend who boarded there a few years after I left and the insulation was completely torn down in some spots.

    Like I said, I don't know how common this is, but certainly something to be aware of.
    A lovely horse is always an experience.... It is an emotional experience of the kind that is spoiled by words. ~Beryl Markham



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    Deep South
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    Default

    The best way to let the hot air out of the top is a ridge vent, which a bird can't negotiate. I had these http://www.mpvent.com/products/ContVent/contvent.html which you could open and close. Air curtains over your aisle doors deter birds and flies.
    Last edited by Equibrit; Feb. 27, 2010 at 09:45 PM.
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 27, 2005
    Posts
    52

    Default

    Are you going to be building where there are no trees for shade?



  11. #11
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    Oct. 25, 2007
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    There are very few trees, a few jack oaks...which are just scrubby trees and some lone pines.
    Its one giant field, so there really is no shade, unfortunately.

    I know I can deal with the heat(or so I think). It is the sun that has been brutal whenever I have been there.
    Plus, I have a few drafts and worry about them in the heat.

    Curious too about fans. I have seen the fans installed in the corner facing down above the stalls. Wondering if installing paddle/ceiling fans above the stalls would be better. That way, I could blow down into the stall or reverse the blades to draw the heat up towards the roof. Or I suppose I could do both and really make the electrician and electric company happy!

    I am building this from the north with no experience in a hot climate, and really want to do this right and appreciate the insight of those living in that climate.

    Anyone moving north, I will be more than happy to explain the needs for a northern climate! LOL

    Equibrit...that is interesting. The ridge vent link. I am including that to the builder. I am putting in cupolas as well as a ridge vent and louvers on the sides under the gables.
    I understand air flow and especially want to make this cool for my horses.
    Fortunately, I think there is always a decent breeze. But on those awful hot days when there is no breeze, we need to make one or encourage what little air flow there might be.
    PRS, that was a good idea making the space under the rafters and on the stall walls a bit larger for better airflow.
    Thanks all.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    May. 21, 2004
    Location
    N. TX...just N.East of paradise...
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    Default

    Birds eat bugs I love having my barn swallows nest in my barn...
    "As a rule we disbelieve all the facts and theories for which we have no use."- William James
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Proud member of the Wheat Loss Clique.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar. 27, 2008
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    305

    Default

    Definitely open rafters. I believe there is insulation now that looks like plywood that can go between the roof and the rafters. I have the bags and the squirrels try to come in and pick it apart.

    Also of course face your aisle so that the prevailing winds go down the aisle. I have overhangs on both sides of the barn and that helps with shade (and rain!)

    I love red barns but did a light roof/light walls to help keep it cool.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 27, 2005
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    52

    Default

    Darn, I'm very sorry to hear there are no trees to help shade your new barn...they're the best thing, even putting up with dropped branches is worth it.

    I think really good ideas have been offered. I don't have ceiling insulation in my barn but might do so if it weren't nestled under some really big oaks.

    As for fans, my barn has a cement aisle and I've found it much more effective to set fans outside the stalls in the aisle, blowing air from the ground up into the stall (the round type on a tripod-ish base that tilt up). I guess this would be difficult if you don't use stall webbing and have solid stall doors I've heard of putting the same "attic fan" that people have in their homes, into barn lofts to suck air up. Maybe something like that right under a cupola or roof vent would be an idea?



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    Deep South
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    Default

    Ceiling fans that are made for exterior use.
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2009
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    PA
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rodawn View Post
    Birds are a minor inconvenience. Other than visual mess of droppings on the floor they are not really much of a problem. You could try installing mesh on the tops of the rafters, but that might be tricky and sometimes they still find a way up there anyway.

    The whole point to having it open to the roof and rafters is air flow and ventilation. The more air flow and ventilation, the healthier your horses are. Poor ventilation = too much moisture build-up, which leads to mold, which leads to lung problems. Even in the colder north, we leave the barns open right up to the roofline and encourage massive ventilation.


    I was always under the impression that birds were seriously unwelcome because they can carry diseases. Not just poop. lol
    Tru : April 14, 1996 - March 14, 2011
    Thank you for everything boy.


    Better View.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov. 6, 2002
    Location
    Henrico, NC 36 30'50.49" N 77 50'17.47" W
    Posts
    5,780

    Default

    I don't think it's possible to have too much ventilation anywhere South from here. We have an open clerestory 3' tall protected by a 4' overhang on both sides of the aisleway above the stall fronts. The underside of the roof over the aisleway is about 20' tall. The only insulation we have anywhere is the tackroom.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct. 25, 2007
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    Default

    Tom, do you have a metal roof or shingles?

    I was told the metal roof without insulation would heat the barn, and the insulation protects that a bit.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb. 9, 2005
    Location
    Ocala, FL
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    1,771

    Default

    Open to the roof, maybe insulate....but use something solid, not pink stuff that birds and besties can nest in. Because they will, even if you cover it with wood.... they will find a way in.
    Metal roofs will radiate heat down during the day.
    Ridge vent and/or cupola (with or without a fan) will help.
    Fans in stalls, but also remember they will blow the hotter air from near the roof down if you put them up too high. I like the fans you hang in the corner - I can change them out myself when they die. Ceiling fans would (for me) require a paid person!

    If you have a gable end, look at gabel end exhaust fans. They blow the hot air that gathers under the roof (even with ridge vents and coupolas) out ! They often have louvers that open automatically when the fan is on. I had one in a house, and it kept it nice even in HOT Stuart FL.

    L



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2001
    Location
    Florida
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    4,197

    Default

    Mine is open. I have a 24x72 shedrow style barn. My barn is never hot. I don't have issues with it being wet from moisture either.

    Pay attention to placement of your barn. I did mine so I catch the eastern breezes down the barn aisle. I also put the shortest walls facing east and west due to the sun and not wanting the 72' long side to bake. The only room and ceiling I have insulated is my tack room.
    "Sometimes you just have to shut up and color."



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