While it is important to have an efficient heating source, such as a natural gas furnace, it is just as critical to properly insulate the home to hold heat and keep down the heating costs. Insulation in the attic space of a home can make a significant difference in heating and cooling bills. Of course it is also important to try and have tight-fitting doors and windows, to eliminate exchange of inside and outside air.
There are actually several options for insulating the attic, reducing energy bills by 20 percent or more in the process. The options include several types of insulating material, some of which can be installed by the homeowner. It is not always necessary to add in the cost of professional help for attic insulation.
One of the basic items of information the homeowner will need is the R-value of insulation. The R-value scale is the method of measuring a material’s ability to hold heat, to put it quite simply. The higher R-value materials will insulate more efficiently. Keep in mind that insulation an inch thick may have an R value of 3 or an R value of 8, for example, depending on the material used and how the insulation is made. Tip: Insulation will lose some of its effectiveness over time.
Of course, it is important to put some insulation in the attic in older homes that have no insulation at all. Increasing the insulation by adding another layer will help as well. Old insulation can be replaced with newer material, increasing the savings and benefits as well. Remodelling or rebuilding is a good time to install new or additional insulation.
Most experienced homeowners and professionals will emphasize that it is necessary to discover and correct moisture problems in the attic before beginning an insulation project. Insulating material can trap moisture and increase the chances that mould will grow in the attic space. It is essential that roof leaks and window leaks be fixed before completing the insulation project. Water leaking from outside, and moisture that condenses in the attic can cause wood rot, staining and other problems. Water and air leaks should be tightly sealed before installation of any insulating material.
There are several types of insulation that will work well in keeping home temperatures constant and energy costs down. The common fibreglass insulation rolls work well and can be placed between attic ceiling/floor joists. Sheet insulation works well too, though this may have to be cut unless it is installed during new construction. Laying rolls or sheets across the first layer adds significantly to the insulating properties.
In recent years, many homeowners have used loose fill insulation to fill attic spaces. This method works well if there are irregular spaces in the attic that need to be filled. More complete coverage is possible. This type of insulation can be blown in with professional equipment or placed by pouring it from a bag. Blowing machines can be rented for installing this type of insulation. Any insulation project should be undertaken with caution and planning.
Peter Wilson usually edits long articles on topics like jigsaws and jigsaw tool reviews. His contributions on jigsaw review are published on his website .
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