Home insulation is important for houses in this age of high energy cost. Home insulation helps to reduce the cost of utility bill in terms of low energy usage. Moreover, it also boosts the values and livability of houses. Therefore, home insulation is especially a must for houses that are more than 10 to 15 years old which tend to be not insulated when they were built 10 to 20 years ago. Even if they were insulated at that time of construction, the insulation technology or the material might not be as good as today’s technology. Therefore, it’s better for you to replace or remodel the insulation if they were installed a decade ago.
The first step to installing home insulation is to identify areas of the house that need to be insulated. The general guideline here is to look at places where there is contact or leak between the interior of your house and the outside world. A good example of this scenario will be the window. During the winter, when you open the window, you can feel the cold air from outside tends to rush into the house. It’s the same in the summer where the heat will enter the house once the window is open. When this situation happens, heat loss or heat gain is occurring.
One thing to remember is that heat exchange is not restricted to just the window and the door. It also happens at places that are intact such as the wall, ceiling and the roof. Even though the wall, ceiling and the roof is a poor conductor, heat loss and heat gain will still occur. If there is a crack in the wall or a hole in the ceiling, heat loss or gain will be accelerated at a faster rate. Therefore, we need insulation to reduce or better eliminate completely the rate of heat loss and gain. With that being said, areas such as the walls, ceiling, basement, attic and the roofs are the critical areas that require to be insulated.
Once you have determined the insulation areas, next step is to choose the insulation material and types of insulation. Some common insulation materials that are affordable to most households are fiberglass, wool, paper, wood and cotton. The more expensive material is the popular polyurethane that is used in spray foam insulation. The polyurethane can cost up to several times more than the conventional materials such as fiberglass, wool and cotton. New and non-conventional insulation materials are being developed constantly in the market.
The good things about these newly developed insulation materials are most of them are made from recycle materials and are absolutely environmental friendly. With the advance of technology, scientists are constantly developing materials that are non toxic, water resistance and fire proof. One good example of a sophisticated insulation material is the one developed by Warmcel which is made of 100% recycled newspaper. Another one is the glass wool developed by Earthwool which is made of recycled glass and sand. One good example of non-conventional and environment friendly spray foam which is made from recycled plastic materials and renewable soy oils is developed by Heatlok Soy.
To recap on the importance of home insulation, houses that were not constructed with insulation installed are encouraged to be reviewed by contractors or better yet perform a home energy audit to check on the amount of energy that can be saved with insulation installed. Insulation not only preserves the limited non-renewable resource with the use of more environment friendly and recycled materials, it also boosts the sale value of the houses and makes the occupants comfortable.
Kenny Chan is an avid advocate of home energy saving. He is an extreme enthusiast in the latest house insulation technology especially on insulation cost and insulation r value. For more information on home insulation, visit his blogat Home Insulation.