Finding the Optimal Insulation for Your Attic

August 10th, 2012

Finding the optimal insulation for your attic may not be as easy as you thought. Most homeowners resort to installing fibreglass batts in every inch of their home as the method is easy and the material cheap. But it may not be the best insulation solution in a freezing, cold, snowy climate that regularly experiences warm to hot temperatures in the short summer months. Optimal Insulation for Your Attic Following is a list of insulation materials you can use to insulate your attic and their benefits. Spray Foam Insulation These can be of two types – open cell or half pound insulation and closed cell or two pound foam insulation. The insulation value of closed cell foam can be up to R 6.9 per inch. The insulation value of open cell foam can be up to R 3.9 per inch. If you install closed cell foam to a minimum of 2’’ depth, it will provide a barrier against vapour. Open cell foam cannot provide any wall against vapour at any depth. However, both these kinds of foam insulation can provide the perfect barrier against air intrusion by sealing off each and every attic bypass if you can install the insulation properly. It is impossible for air to move through any kind of foam insulation, so air convections are eliminated totally. The only drawbacks are the expenses involved. As it is not a do it yourself insulation method or material, you shall have to hire professionals which will cost you money. Foam insulation is also perhaps the most expensive insulation product available in the market. Another downside is its flammability, but if you are using it in the attic, it will be covered completely, thus reducing chances of combustion. If you wish to reduce the expenses, you can spray foam the lid on your house and then top up with loose fill insulation for optimal insulation for your attic. Fibreglass Insulation 20 years ago, cellulose was a better insulating product compared to loose fill fibreglass in bitterly cold, frigid climates. In current times, the manufacturers of loose fill fibreglass have altered their products sufficiently to counter the problem of lost or heavily reduced insulation in minus 20 degree temperatures. Today, you can use fibreglass insulation with a very high R value (R 38 to R 50) not just in the attic, but in every square foot of your house as it is so inexpensive and excellent at trapping heat. Cellulose Insulation Another effective choice for optimal insulation for your attic can be cellulose. Cellulose insulation is perfect for cold, frigid climates as it is a very dense material and can control condensation in your attic. It has the ability to drastically reduce air movement from attic bypasses, but it cannot totally eliminate this air movement. Do it yourself cellulose insulation can lead to the creation of a lot of dust. Professional installers use wet spray cellulose for increasing the insulation value slightly per inch and also for controlling the dust. Wet spray cellulose is nothing but cellulose dampened with a little bit of water.