Question about insulation types and best approach for insulating above a drop ceiling


Hello Reddit friends,I have some regions that are above a door and also above a drop ceiling in my basement/laundry area. At least one section has a face that is directly adjacent to outside. The door exits to cement stairs going up outside, such that your head would be at ground level in the doorframe. A cold water line runs an elbow adjacent to the upper left of the door, providing cold water to the upper section of the home. We have had minor freezing of this elbow in prior years. I picked up some small insulation rolls, maybe R6.7 or R19, and loosely placed it in the main section that the pipe is exposed to for protection from intermittent freezing temps. I fear this may not be a good (enough) solution for the next week or two.We are looking at an extended period of really low temperatures, ranging from 0F to -20F, around the clock for about 7 days. Ice is already forming on some small areas of the joists on the interior of the house in two of these regions. There is far too much cold air flow for me to feel comfortable.I am looking at a couple areas that are around 16″x6-8″x24″ (40cmx15-20cmx64cm) in volume that are above a basement door. There are three critical area around 16″x8″, but there are some irregular edges and gaps and a corner with a larger face on one side. The insulation appears to require a couple of layers to be effective and is only currently in one of the regions.Right now, I am using a combination of small insulation rolls loosely placed against the outside wall/joist and around and in some gaps to block the cold air flow near the pipe. I also have some towels filling some other larger spaces in adjacent regions, just to minimize (cold) air flow until I can find out how to properly insulate. There are three separate areas to deal with, including a corner having a larger region.It appears I cannot rely on supporting anything from the “bottom,” as it is a drop ceiling. For example, blowing in insulation is not really an option. I’m thinking loosely packing in denim or fiberglass insulation to essentially fill the volume area around the pipe and in the adjacent regions above the drop ceiling. There is zero wiring to worry about in these areas.First, is denim or fiberglass the best option here? It will likely be several layers atop one another and some loose insulation in the irregular gaps around the top of the doorway.Second, is there a sound approach to insulating larger regions between joists? For example, best to treat the interior surfaces of the exterior joists and leave the rest of the area open?Third, can anyone provide some insight as to some other ways to attack this problem that may be helpful?TIA! via /r/DIY

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