What You Need to Know About Home Insulation

What You Need to Know About Insulation

As the winter months are upon us, insulation has become an important topic to consider. Here are some things to keep in mind if you have any issues that need to be addressed.

  • Consider upgrading your insulation if it is old, worn out, or insufficient. Having weak insulation can cause your furnace, or air conditioning to run more often, or continuously, due to the loss of energy though the weak insulation. Overworking the system can lead you to having to repair your furnace (or AC unit) earlier than expected.
  • Missing insulation can lead to mold growth, as the warm air finds access without insulation and melds with the colder air either inside or outside of the house which can help feed mold growth. Spots like this usually occur on walls near and around floors and windows. If you don’t want to tear open the wall and reinforce the insulation or lack thereof, a humidifier can help mitigate the problem as a temporary solution.
  • If you are dealing with energy loss, or rooms that refuse to heat up or cool down, depending on the season, you may want to consider adding insulation in your attic. An attic with poor insulation can account for 25% of a a homes loss of heat. Taking steps to improve that can make a huge difference in your utility bill, and in your level of comfort.
  • If you are experiencing freezing or condensation on pipes, consider pipe covers that insulate the pipes from elements and keep them functioning properly.
  • If you have an unfinished basement you can also consider adding insulation to those walls in order to prevent additional heat loss. Rigid insulation can be lined along the walls to help accomplish this.
  • Consider using insulation contractors to help find and address any addition gaps that could be leaking air from within. Hiring a professional can help you find issues you might have previously missed or overlooked.
  • Use foam or caulk to fill small gaps around pipes, or electrical fixtures that might cause inside air to leak into the walls. If there is poor insulation this can make it easier for air to be lost.
  • Add weather stips to doorways to help insulate the rooms within. This can be especially useful when it comes to doors that lead outside. In winter these doorways can cause uncomfortable drafts and additional loss of heat that no one wants.
  • If you want to add insulation without going through any insulation companies, keep in mind not to stuff insulation into narrow spaces. Stuffing the full width swaths of insulation into spaces can cause air pockets that can create heat loss even with the insulation in place.
  • In the winter be sure to clean the attic venting, if not ice dams can accumulate on the roof of your home, which could lead to problems up there. Ice dams are formed when warm air escaping the home heats fallen snow. The melting caused water to run down and accumulate along the edges which can the re-freeze. This is what created those large icicles along the roof of homes. If not mitigated the can not only cause damage, but pose a safety risk to people below.

Insulation is an important part of a home, and making sure you have enough can make a difference in your comfort and your energy bill. Take a minute to assess if you have any places that could be shored up, and don’t be afraid to contact a professional service if additional steps need to be taken.

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