How To Choose the Right Attic Insulation For Florida Homes
Florida is categorized as a subtropical climate that's both hot and humid. This makes it doubly important to select the correct type of attic insulation for the climate. Though Florida has relatively mild winters, it's still important to keep homes warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Ultimately, there are a few different types of attic insulation that homeowners can make their selections from.
Though many types of attic insulation are appropriate for Florida's climate, due to the humid nature of the Sunshine State, spray foam insulation is the most recommended. Closed-cell spray foam not only has a high R-value but is highly affordable. Other common insulation types include, but aren't limited to blown-in cellulose, blown-in fiberglass, and fiberglass batt.
The moist environment in Florida requires that insulation have the ability to remain durable during peak temperatures and properly seal the attic off during a heat wave. Additionally, it's possible to upgrade attic insulation to contain an additive that improves roof strength for hurricane season. Lastly, it's crucial that any insulation used in a Florida home doesn't absorb moisture over time.
Though many types of insulation exist, the following four types are most used in modern attic upgrades:
1. Closed-cell spray foam insulation is a popular option that has closed high-density cells that are able to completely seal off an attic area. Not only does this type of insulation provide a proper air barrier, but a vapor barrier as well. The way that the foam expands is that the cells are filled with gas in order to create a full and complete seal. One of the major benefits that this foam insulation offers is its high R-value rating, and that translates to them being one of the best insulators on the market. Additionally, the closed-cell technology allows the foam to create a moisture-proof barrier, but it's crucial to install it properly so it doesn't hide existing leaks within an attic.
Once the insulation foam has completely cured, it also strengthens and adds stability to a roof. This helps a home withstand inclement weather conditions much better. The only actual downside to this type of foam insulation is that it also bears a high installation cost. As installation experts need to always remain vigilant when spraying, it makes it harder to install.
2. Open-cell spray foam insulation is not as dense as the previously mentioned foam, but it still does a good job insulating the attic. The open cells are filled with air that causes the foam to expand and create a barrier against both sound and air. Though this product has a lower R-value than closed-cell spray foam, it can still help properly regulate indoor temperatures. This option is one of the most commonly requested because it's highly affordable and fairly effective.
3. Blown-in fiberglass insulation is a type of insulation that's categorized as loose-fill and is used amply in hot and humid climates. Cheaper than spray foam insulation by a great deal, fiberglass insulation still boasts a reasonable R-value rating of 2.5 per inch. What makes blown-in fiberglass so great is its ability to properly insulate oddly shaped spaces or those with lots of wiring and hidden electrical parts. This option is still relatively thorough and offers a decent barrier against humidity.
Blown-in fiberglass creates an attic floor blanket that protects a home's interior from excessive heat. This also helps cut down on the amount of effort an HVAC system needs to cool down a home.
4. Blown-in cellulose contains shredded newspaper as its base for insulation. In an effort to control insects and protect against fire, the newspaper insulation is treated with boric acid. Of course, this option doesn't offer the same advantages as spray foam, but it still is a much better option than batts.
The downside to this affordable form of insulation is that it hardly ever repels insects or rodents regardless of any chemical treatments it may have received. What's more, it can also absorb moisture and cause mold or mildew damage within an attic.
AttiClean has been helping Florida residents for many years find the ideal solution for their insulation needs. From spray foam to fiberglass, insulating an attic area can help a home become more sustainable and modern while helping improve the energy efficiency of its appliances.