For home insulation in the winter, there are several factors to be aware of. Climate and region are your main concerns, and the basis for most of your insulation decisions. These issues will help determine which R-value and type of insulator you use. Additionally, the size of your home and amount of uninsulated space will determine how much insulation you need to keep your house warm and efficient.
Fiberglass Insulation: the Most Popular Option
Despite the misleading name, fiberglass insulationis actually a plastic. Originally deemed “glass wool” the material is actually comprised of glass fibers embedded in a resin matrix. And while it appears fluffy and harmless, it is highly recommended to use protection while handling the material. This is absolutely the most common substance used in American home insulation, arriving in both batts and rolls. Batts are pre-cut strips of the material used to line your framing work, and rolls, just as they sound, are rolls meant to be rolled out in between the floorboards.
Why Should I Use Unfaced Fiberglass for my home?
Unfaced fiberglass is just pure fiberglass, no strings attached. The main advantage of unfaced material is that you can stack it for added insulation. Unfortunately this also means that its greatest strength is also its greatest drawback. In humid attics the insulation can actually backfire if it becomes a cesspool of mold. Mold and mildew love to build up in warm, humid conditions, and unfaced fiberglass can become a breeding ground. Otherwise if you live in extremely cold, dry climates, unfaced is the way to go. Stack a layer on top of a layer to save yourself money on heating costs.
What are the Advantages of Faced FIberglass?
The beauty of faced fiberglass is that the material comes with a strip of moisture resistant paper that prolonges the longetivity of your insulation material. As noted before with the unfaced, the biggest drawback to choosing fiberglass is mold and mildew damage. This faceing is essentially weather stripping to protect against humidity. And it doubles as a guiding strip, allowing you to use the facing to adhere the insulation to the wood. All you need is a staple gun and you’re good to go!
What are Rigid Foam Boards used for?
For large construction projects, rigid foam boards are the way to go. For a cheap effective insulation for a gigantic building, there’s no other alternative that can stay as cost effective. The process involves laying down the insulation, usually in foundation work, and sealing it up with a foam adhesive. Although it is an effective and reliable insulation at an affordable rate, it is generally only recommended for commercial use and therefore not meant for public residencies.
What do people mean when they say “Loose-Fill Cellulose” and “Blown-In” materials
Loose-fill cellulose is meant to be a cost-efficient material that can blanket either large areas or tiny nooks and crannies for an effective insulation. The fact that the material was created from recycled paper greatly cuts down on the costs. And “blow-in” refers to the material being transported via tube into your home. This technique is usually reserved for small, hard to reach crevices or crawlspaces. One downside is that with cellulose, the material can settle after a few years, decreasing its efficiency.