Attic insulation performs a important position in home energy performance. Actually, most building scientists agree that the attic ought to be the first “goal” space for insulation and air-sealing upgrades. Most houses are constructed with code-required minimal ranges of attic insulation which are far below current recommendations established by the U.S. Dept. of Energy.
Homeowners contemplating an attic insulation upgrade have a number of various insulation supplies to consider. Each attic insulating option has distinct advantages and limitations. Understanding these professionals and cons will help you choose the perfect insulation upgrade in your attic.
Fiberglass batt insulation is common because it’s affordable and universally available. No matter age, many houses have attics insulated with fiberglass batts. The batts are typically put in between attic floor joists, and unfaced batts are extra common than faced batts in attic installations.
PROS: Extra affordable than other types of attic insulation. Best kind of insulation for DIYers to install. Unlike blown insulation, batts may be lifted up and moved to provide access to the ceiling under, can lights and ceiling-mounted vent fans. Existing batt insulation can usually be left in place when blown insulation is added to extend total R-value in the attic.
CONS: Difficult to install accurately around obstructions. Voids the place insulation insulation in concord is missing contribute to important energy loss. A number of layers of batt insulation are required to realize really useful R-values in most elements of the country; this makes it inconceivable to use the attic for storage unless particular platforms are built prior to insulation installation. Fiberglass insulation can’t cease air movement.
Two primary forms of blown (or blow-in) insulation are generally used: cellulose and free-fill fiberglass. Both sorts are designed to be put in using special blowing equipment.
PROS: Installation might be completed quickly and affordably. Blown insulation typically leads to more full protection than is feasible with fiberglass batts.
CONS: A thick layer of insulation (not less than 16 in. for northern components of the U.S.) is required, and this makes it inconceivable to make use of the attic space for storage unless special platforms are built prior to installing the insulation. Cellulose and unfastened-fill fiberglass insulation can’t stop air movement.
Skilled spray foam insulation contractors typically insulate an attic by applying a thick layer of spray foam between the rafters. Two varieties of foam are used: open-cell and closed-cell. Opinions fluctuate as to which kind is greatest in an attic installation, but closed-cell spray foam is used more frequently.
PROS: Closed-cell spray foam supplies the very best R-worth per in. (about R-6) of any attic insulation. It additionally creates an air and moisture barrier, so it eliminates the need for separate air-sealing work. Insulating beneath the roof deck as an alternative of on the attic ground frees up attic house for storage and different purposes. This technique also improves the efficiency of HVAC components (like air handlers and ductwork) positioned in the attic.
CONS: Costliest attic insulation. A thick layer of froth utilized to the underside of the roof sheathing can trap moisture and cause sheathing to rot.
Rigid foam hasn’t been used as extensively for attic insulation until a most recent development. In a single distinctive system, a proprietary rigid foam panel is fixed to the underside of attic rafters, forming an air and thermal barrier.
PROS: Supplies all the benefits of spray foam, with the extra benefit of sustaining attic ventilation. The potential for roof sheathing moisture damage is eliminated. The inflexible foam is faced with a radiant barrier that reflects heat for added energy financial savings -one other advantage over spray foam.
CONS: The system is available in limited areas, so it is not as widely available as spray foam. Installation cost is bigger than fiberglass batts and blown insulation, but competitive with spray foam.