In order to keep your energy bill low and the temperature in your home properly regulated, you'll need to ensure that your home is properly insulated. In the instance where you live in hot climates, this heavily applies to you. However, the main question on everyone's mind is which attic insulation is the best. So, read on as we dive into everything you need to know about the best insulation for attics.
Before we can get straight to it, a proper understanding of the R-value is important. The R-value is the insulating strength. In essence, the material's ability to resist cool air loss or transfer cool air is better known as the R-value. The R-value is affected by the installation method, the thickness, the type of material, and the density.
If the value is high, the material will be better at trapping the cool air and ensuring that you don't sweat over. During the hotter months, it prevents your home from becoming your personal sauna. While fiberglass is a commonly used insulating material, it isn't exactly the best. The R-value of fiberglass ranges from 30 to 38.
Fiberglass is mainly used since it is highly accessible, cheap and it readily resists moisture. It is also fire-resistant, it resists shrinkage, and insects and pests avoid nibbling. Another common insulating material is cellulose. If you didn't already know, cellulose comes from recycled paper or wood.
Manufacturers of cellulose sell their product by indicating that it is a green product since it can be recycled easier than other insulating materials. However, the main concern attached is that it is very flammable and has to be treated with chemicals. According to the Consumer Products Safety Commission, manufacturers are expected to warn customers that cellulose is indeed a fire hazard to their property.
While cellulose is cheaper than fiberglass, it does have quite a few drawbacks. Over time, your cellulose will sag and settle which significantly reduces its properties. When cellulose becomes wet, it holds water and develops mildew and mold.
Another great insulating material is that of mineral wool. Mineral wool is made from recycled slag and melted stone. When compared to fiberglass, it is rather costly. However, you're paying for its benefits.
Mineral wool acts as a fire barrier and doesn't begin burning until a whopping 1200 degrees F and saves precious minutes until the fire department can get to your home. One of the best qualities of mineral wool is that it is also water-resistant which means that even in the midst of a severe leak, it wouldn't retain the water. Unlike others, it is also sound resistant and will block out outside noises.
Ever recycled a pair of old blue jeans? If you did then it's probably still with you as part of your cotton insulation. Cotton insulation is made from recycled blue jeans and is a great insulator for several reasons.
Since cotton actively traps heat, it is widely considered as high performance. Unlike other materials that release harmful particles into the atmosphere, cotton is safe and easy to install and you'll never need to worry about irritants. However, this form of insulation is rather expensive.
Some of these include prevention against air leaks and allowing homeowners to expand the envelope of the roofline. Unlike other materials, foam is the only one that allows homeowners to do so.
As we conclude, we have just looked at the best insulation for attics. While all insulation types may have some disadvantages, they provide many great benefits and get the job done. Choosing the best insulation for attics is simply dependent on personal preference and your budget. So, before purchasing any insulation for your attic, it's best to consider all of the above.