The Importance of Attic Insulation

Nov 30, 2012 by

It is a well known fact that heat flows from the warm areas of our homes to the cooler areas. In Florida, this usually means heat is seeping in from the outside to an air-conditioned interior. Having your home properly insulated can reduce the amount of heat seeping in or out of your home which can result in reducing cooling and heating costs. Installing insulation in the attic is very important and can give you a big return on energy savings. Insulating your attic is extremely important because heat rises and travels up through your ceiling and out any leaks or gaps in your attic.

Checking Your Attic for Adequate Insulation

It is quite simple to check how much existing insulation your attic already has. Simply take a ruler and multiply the number of inches by the R-value of the insulation that you already have installed. The R-value refers to the performance of insulation by measuring the resistance of heat flowing through the insulation over a period of time. Insulation with greater resistance (higher R-value) to heat flow means less heat will enter your home during the warmer months and less heat will seep out of your home in the cooler months. A slower heat flow means reduced cooling and heating costs that will save you money.

 

Currently home building practices indicate an R-30 to R-38 in the attic as a good insulation product for all climate zones in the state ofFlorida. The effectiveness of an insulated attic also depends on how and where the insulation is installed. Also, it is best to remember that the overall R-value of the insulation will be a little different from the R-value of the actual insulation itself because heat flows around the insulation, through studs and joists in wood or steel-framed constructed homes. Certain conditions inside of your home can also alter the effectiveness of the insulation in a home, like cathedral ceilings.

 

How Do I Know Which Insulation to Choose?

The choice of insulation will depend on how much space you have available, the bulk density of the material used, and how easy the space is to access. When considering which insulation to use, compare the cost per square foot (installed) of each R-value type. It is also good to remember that different types of insulation will settle more than others decreasing its cost and effectiveness. It is extremely important to make sure your ceilings can handle the additional weight before you have it installed. Insulation that is compressed or improperly installed with gaps will not function at its rated efficiency.

 

Are There Other Factors I Should Consider?

Having your home properly insulated will not only keep your heating and cooling costs down but it will also make your home feel more comfortable. That being said, adequate insulation must be used in conjunction with proper air sealing and moisture control measures to ensure the occupants are kept comfortable. Companies like Mid-Florida Heating and Air can perform a home energy audit and show you how to improve your home’s energy efficiency. Start saving money by contacting them today!

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