Attic Insulation Options Provide Different Pros and Cons

Attic insulation plays a essential position in house energy performance. Actually, most building scientists agree that the attic ought to be the first “target” space for insulation and air-sealing upgrades. Most homes are constructed with code-required minimal levels of attic insulation which might be far beneath present recommendations established by the U.S. Dept. of Energy.

Householders considering an attic insulation improve have a number of different insulation supplies to consider. Each attic insulating option has distinct advantages and limitations. Understanding these execs and cons will help you select the best insulation improve in your attic.

Fiberglass batts

Fiberglass batt insulation is widespread because it’s affordable and universally available. Regardless of age, many houses have attics insulated with fiberglass batts. The batts are typically put in between attic ground joists, and unfaced batts are extra common than faced batts in attic installations.

PROS: Extra affordable than other types of attic insulation. Finest sort of insulation for DIYers to install. Unlike blown insulation, batts may be lifted up and moved to offer access to the ceiling below, can lights and ceiling-mounted vent fans. Present batt insulation can typically be left in place when blown insulation is added to extend total R-value in the attic.

CONS: Difficult to install appropriately round obstructions. Voids where insulation is lacking contribute to significant energy loss. Multiple layers of batt insulation are required to attain beneficial R-values in most elements of the country; this makes it not possible to use the attic for storage except particular platforms are built prior to insulation installation. Fiberglass insulation can’t stop air movement.

Blown insulation

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

PROS: Set up will be completed shortly and affordably. Blown insulation typically ends in extra full protection than is possible with fiberglass batts.

CONS: A thick layer of insulation (no less than sixteen in. for northern parts of the U.S.) is required, and this makes it impossible to make use of the attic area for storage unless special platforms are built previous to installing the insulation. Cellulose and unfastened-fill fiberglass insulation can’t stop air movement.

Spray foam

Skilled spray foam insulation contractors typically insulate an attic by applying a thick layer of spray foam between the rafters. Two kinds of foam are used: open-cell and closed-cell. Opinions vary as to which type is greatest in an attic set up, but closed-cell spray foam is used more frequently.

PROS: Closed-cell spray foam offers 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 insulation removal companies ground frees up attic house for storage and different purposes. This strategy additionally improves the effectivity of HVAC components (like air handlers and ductwork) positioned within the attic.

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

Inflexible foam

Rigid foam hasn’t been used as extensively for attic insulation till a most up-to-date 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: Gives all the advantages of spray foam, with the additional benefit of maintaining 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 savings -one other benefit over spray foam.

CONS: The system is available in limited areas, so it isn’t as broadly available as spray foam. Installation cost is bigger than fiberglass batts and blown insulation, but aggressive with spray foam.