As a homeowner, you probably know the importance of insulating your home to protect it from extreme heat loss or gain. But, there are some benefits you may have overlooked. Attic insulation ensures improved home comfort and energy efficiency result from attic insulatio. It is an essential process, especially if you live in cold climate zones.
Warming your house during winter or any other season can prove costly due to high power consumption and increasing utility bills. Proper attic insulation in your new or old home is an effective way of managing costs. Read on to discover the surprising benefits of attic insulation you probably never knew.
Higher R-Value Makes for Better Insulation
You might have seen the word ‘R-value’ in attic connections, which refers to the material’s resistance to heat flow. The higher the R-value, the better the insulation capacity. Before taking the big step, determine the best-possible R-value for your home based on location, heating patterns, and whether the home is new or old.
Insulation Makes Your HVAC System More Effective
An attic without insulation loses a lot of heat, and so does a poorly insulated one. Both lose heat through the roof, causing your HVAC system to overwork and balance the temperatures in your home. During summer, a badly insulated attic can cause the room temperatures to exceed 150°. As a result, the high temperatures force your air conditioning system to run nonstop.
Both scenarios can hasten the wear and tear of a home’s HVAC system, increasing the chances of breakdown and causing you to dig deeper into your pockets. However, if your attic insulation is excellently done, you save on energy bills.
Don’t Ignore Vapor Barriers as They Prevent Biological Growth
Moisture can degrade attic insulation. During installation, ensure that you put in place a vapor barrier to prevent biological growth. Choose a thick vapor barrier, preferably 6-mil polyethylene wrapping, to ward off moisture from your attic insulation.
Insulation Doesn’t Interfere With Airflow
You may have avoided attic insulation due to insulation misunderstandings. Some types of insulation, such as spray foam, bear an unwarranted reputation for seizing air leaks. Homeowners unknowingly use insulation on attic cavities or floors with the hope it will keep off-air from flowing into the attic.
Spray foam insulation controls heat loss or gain, meaning air flows freely like in other insulation. However, with a combination of similar external materials, and home siding, your gypsum board is more effective in blocking air leaks. You can use caulk to seal the gaps and prevent free airflow into your home if there are any cracks.
Cellulose Is a Good Insulator for Homes as It’s Fire-Resistant
Attic insulation comes in different forms; fiberglass, wool, cotton, mineral, cellulose, and foam.
Cellulose is made from recycled newspapers, then turned into fibers. Its R-value is higher/inch than fiberglass insulation. Thus, you need less insulating material for cellulose than fiberglass.
Cellulose material has a loose fill, which is blown in place using a special machine. Therefore, all gaps and crevices are easier to fill. Although cellulose is made from paper, it’s treated with borate to become fire-resistant, meaning it’s safe for homes. Moreover, unlike other options, cellulose composition settings don’t leave room for the risk of biological growth.
Make These Fundamental Observations Before Installation for Longevity
Before insulation, check the list below to grant your insulation longevity. Further, conditioned air will only remain where it belongs, inside the house.
- Fix leaking roofs –Water is the number one enemy of insulation, as it creates a suitable environment for mold and mildew to grow. As a result, the mold and mildew will ruin the air-trapping pockets that hinder heat flow. To find out if your roof leaks, check dampness, water stains, or moldy spots on the roof sheathing and attic joists.
- Box light fixtures – If you aren’t using mineral wool insulation, the insulation shouldn’t touch lights. Create a safety gap using a hardware cloth, scrap plywood, or metal flashing.
- Fans and vent exhaust should go to the exterior –Ensure that you direct vents and fan exhausts to the exterior and not to the attic space. Most builders might have gotten away with this shortcut, but it’s a mistake that needs correction.
Safety Tips During Installation
- Start working from the attic’s perimeter towards the hatch or door to avoid trampling over the insulation.
- Ensure the insulation is deep enough to maximize the target R-value by covering the top of the ceiling joists. It will also prevent thermal bridging – heat loss through wood frames.
- Take a thorough shower to rid your skin of fibers, and launder your work clothes properly after a single use.