4 Home Insulation Misconceptions

Home insulation is a major factor in your home’s overall energy efficiency, and it must be installed correctly for proper performance. Several common misconceptions can harm the performance of your home insulation and leave you with higher heating and cooling costs.

Insulation Stops Air Infiltration

The main job of home insulation is to slow the heat transfer between the indoors and the outdoors, allowing your home to maintain a stable temperature with minimal energy input. To stop the flow of air, your home must also have proper sheathing on the inside and the outside of the walls, windows and doors should be insulated, and the sills, stud bays and penetrations for pipes, electrical lines and other items should be properly sealed.

Sprayed or Blown Insulation Provides Air Sealing

Both sprayed and blown-in insulation are better than fiberglass for filling small areas where air can infiltrate in the spaces between studs and floor joists, but there are many other places where air can leak through. These include openings for pipes, around windows or under the sill plates of walls. Insulation must be combined with proper air sealing techniques for the best performance.

R-Value Is Constant

An insulation’s R-value is a measurement of how well it resists the flow of heat from warmer spaces to cooler spaces, according to laboratory testing. A higher R-value indicates greater resistance. The effective R-value of your insulation can be changed by how it’s installed or what happens inside your home afterward. Compressing the insulation can reduce its effective R-value, as can moisture. If your home’s outer envelope isn’t properly sealed, the movement of air though the insulation can also reduce its effectiveness.

Cellulose Insulation Can Settle

Older cellulose tends to settle if it’s installed loosely or incorrectly. Today’s installations often overfill the cavities to provide better air sealing and to account for settling.

Learn more about Hollub Inc.’s home insulation and HVAC solutions, or give us a call at (312) 829-8000.

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