Whether your home is older or newer, insulating with the right materials in all of the right places is key. In our blog, we provide advice and guidelines for many of the insulation issues you may struggle with. Today we’re focusing on some facts you may not have known about.
1. Insulation isn’t only about controlling temperatures.
When you think about insulation, normally you first think about the control of air flow. You want your home to be warm in winter and cool in the summer. Insulation works primarily by sealing up air leaks that are the number one culprit in wasting up to 40% of heating and cooling energy. So while insulation does work to ensure comfortable temperatures in your home, it also serves other purposes. It prevents moisture and insect—and other pest—infestations. Homeowners who live in flood zones will want to make sure they choose insulation materials that resist moisture, such as spray foam. At Superior, we recommend spray foam for a variety of reasons including this. It also discourages pest infestations because it contains no materials that would be a food source for rodents and other unwanted guests.
2. If you go solar, skylights aren’t necessarily the answer.
For those homeowners who want to go green, you may have thought about installing skylights to reduce heating costs. But these can actually take a lot of energy. If you’re in a room that has a skylight, it can feel like a furnace. To avoid hot, uncomfortable rooms, consider tubular skylights in some of your interior rooms. They reduce energy loss, and actually perform better than skylights.
3. Sometimes it’s not about the insulation, but the structure and position of your house.
When you’re getting ready to buy a house, check beyond its aesthetic attributes. Notice the foundation. Is there a way for rainwater to drain away from the house? If not, it’s likely to cause flooding, particularly in the basement. There are some things you can do, such as installing gutters or adding extensions to downspouts to prevent this. Also, if you’re concerned about drafty rooms and energy efficiency, notice the orientation of the house. The ideal is to have the long axis running east to west with several windows along the south wall, with storage or darker rooms to the north. Whatever the house, pay attention to the way it’s situated and take note of where natural sunlight will flow in. When there’s plenty of light in a house, you’ll have automatic solar heating.
4. Insulation is not a DIY project.
Even though you may see pictures on the Internet of people with goggles trying to blow insulation into their attic, this is not a wise move. Although there are times when you can caulk or seal around windows and doors yourself, installing insulation is better left to professional contractors. They will know all the proper safety precautions to take, while you may accidentally put your family at risk, blowing chemicals around, into the living areas inside your home. Professionals will also know how much of a particular insulation material to use. For example, with spray foam, a little goes a long way. Not as much is required to achieve the desired density, whereas other materials like fiberglass require more. As a homeowner, the smartest thing you can do is to rely on the expertise of contractors who have worked with all types of homes and buildings—from residential to commercial—and who have years of experience. That’s what you can expect from the professionals at Superior Insealators.
Superior Insealators will work with you to identify the best products and methods for your insulation needs. Contact us today for more information.
Superior Insealators is an ABAA (Air Barrier Association of America) Certified Insulation Contractor.