Retrofitting Your Home With Insulation? Read This.
As your house ages, it can start to feel colder. Sitting by a window can reveal drafts. Bedrooms upstairs can never seem to lose their chill. Basements can always seem just a bit damp; they might seem to be the coldest place in the home.
It can lead you to grabbing a sweater or a blanket on the very first night there’s a chill in the air.
But there is a better way.
If you’ve noticed your house is growing colder, it could be your insulation.
How do you decide if you need new insulation?
Like all fixtures throughout your home, your insulation will only last for so long. When it was originally installed, it may have been the top of the line at that point in time. But technology changes. Today’s insulation provides more energy efficiency and thermal insulation qualities than ever before.
In some cases, your original insulation may not have been installed correctly. Over time, moisture can move in, it can settle, or it can simply be moved by repair work and remodeling activities.
We have simple tests that can also show where leaks exist. Cracks around windows, ducts, electrical outlets, recessed lighting, fireplaces, and through the top of your home are common places for heat loss. Once we determine where heat loss occurs, it’s then a matter of deciding the best way to add new insulation to improve the efficiency of your home.
What about existing insulation?
It depends on how old your home is and what type of insulation exists throughout the house. If your house is decades old, your home might be insulated with a variety of products, including paper, newspaper, wood shavings, wool, or other materials. If it was built mid-century, it could contain asbestos or urea-formaldehyde. Only a professional can determine if the original insulation is in good condition, and how susceptible it is for providing danger to your home and family. In some cases, the best course of action is to leave it alone.
What insulation should be installed?
Do a quick search and you’ll find several different options: blown-in, batt, and foam, for example. The most common – and our preferred method – is blown-in insulation. This method can fill in the walls and attic of your home with a high-quality product and put it where you need it most.
A reputable professional will focus on R-value – the material’s resistance to heat flow – and give you the appropriate level of insulation for what your home needs. The attic is the best place to start, as that is where most leaks occur. Heat rises; if your home isn’t insulated properly, your heating efforts are moving right through the roof.
When was the last time you analyzed how effective your insulation is? Maybe now is the time.