Attic Insulation Options Provide Different Pros and Cons

Attic insulation performs a critical function in residence energy performance. The truth is, most building scientists agree that the attic must be the primary “goal” space for insulation and air-sealing upgrades. Most properties are built with code-required minimal ranges of attic insulation which are far below current suggestions established by the U.S. Dept. of Energy.

Homeowners considering an attic insulation improve have a number of various insulation supplies to consider. Every attic insulating option has distinct advantages and limitations. Understanding these professionals and cons will help you select the very best insulation improve for your attic.

Fiberglass batts

Fiberglass batt insulation is widespread because it is affordable and universally available. No matter age, many houses have attics insulated with fiberglass batts. The batts are typically installed between attic flooring 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 will be lifted up and moved to offer access to the ceiling below, can lights and ceiling-mounted vent fans. Existing batt insulation can usually be left in place when blown insulation is added to extend general R-worth within the attic.

CONS: Difficult to put in appropriately round obstructions. Voids the place insulation removal walnut creek is lacking contribute to vital energy loss. A number of layers of batt insulation are required to attain recommended R-values in most elements of the country; this makes it unattainable to use the attic for storage unless particular platforms are built prior to insulation installation. Fiberglass insulation cannot cease air movement.

Blown insulation

Two fundamental kinds of blown (or blow-in) insulation are commonly used: cellulose and free-fill fiberglass. Both sorts are designed to be put in using particular blowing equipment.

PROS: Installation could be completed rapidly and affordably. Blown insulation typically ends in extra full protection than is possible with fiberglass batts.

CONS: A thick layer of insulation (at the very least sixteen in. for northern elements of the U.S.) is required, and this makes it inconceivable to make use of the attic area for storage unless particular platforms are built previous to installing the insulation. Cellulose and free-fill fiberglass insulation cannot cease air movement.

Spray foam

Professional spray foam insulation contractors typically insulate an attic by making use of a thick layer of spray foam between the rafters. Two varieties of foam are used: open-cell and closed-cell. Opinions differ as to which kind is finest in an attic installation, but closed-cell spray foam is used extra frequently.

PROS: Closed-cell spray foam gives the best R-value per in. (about R-6) of any attic insulation. It also creates an air and moisture barrier, so it eliminates the need for separate air-sealing work. Insulating beneath the roof deck as a substitute of on the attic ground frees up attic area for storage and other purposes. This strategy also improves the efficiency of HVAC parts (like air handlers and ductwork) located in the attic.

CONS: Most expensive attic insulation. A thick layer of foam utilized to the underside of the roof sheathing can lure moisture and cause sheathing to rot.

Rigid foam

Inflexible foam hasn’t been used as extensively for attic insulation till a most recent development. In one distinctive system, a proprietary rigid foam panel is fastened to the underside of attic rafters, forming an air and thermal barrier.

PROS: Supplies all the advantages of spray foam, with the extra advantage of sustaining attic ventilation. The potential for roof sheathing moisture damage is eliminated. The rigid foam is confronted with a radiant barrier that reflects warmth for added energy financial savings -one other benefit over spray foam.

CONS: The system is available in restricted areas, so it’s not as widely available as spray foam. Installation value is greater than fiberglass batts and blown insulation, but aggressive with spray foam.