Hot air rises, and if it goes right through your ceiling, the result is higher energy costs and a colder home.
Over 60% of all heat loss happens through your ceilings.
Adding insulation can cut heating energy costs as much as 60%, so good insulation is a great investment.
To gain the most out of your insulation the following areas should be sealed to prevent air migration from the interior living space into your attic.
Prior to insulating, check for air leaks, then properly seal the following areas:
- Around plumbing stacks
- Any light fixtures from the ceiling below
- Ducting for fans or heating systems
- Perimeter walls
- Partition walls
- Above pocket doors
- Above lowered ceilings
- Where the side of a cathedral ceiling meets an open attic
- Split level discontinuities
- Where additions meet an older section of the house
- Above rounded corners or staircases
- Balloon frame walls
Attic insulation has to be done right, however, by professionals with expert knowledge about proper air sealing and attic ventilation.
Attic cavities under flat roofs and homes with cathedral or vaulted ceilings require different methods of insulation than homes with pitched roofs. In most cases, you can only insulate these areas during the roof replacement process, unless you are prepared to remove all of your ceilings and install new drywall, plaster and paint.
The following are the different kinds of insulation on the market today, along with their advantages and disadvantages:
Cellulose insulation helps keep your home warmer in winter, cooler in summer, blocks air infiltration and saves money.
The walls, ceilings, and floors of your home are full of odd shaped cavities and obstacles like plumbing, air ducts, and wiring. For your insulation to work effectively, it must completely fill in the area around these obstructions without gaps or voids. Ordinary fiberglass insulation cannot do that.
Unlike fiberglass, cellulose insulation is sprayed or blown into walls, conforming to your home and surrounding you and your family with a seamless insulation system.
To gain the most out of your insulation, attic penetrations must always be sealed before insulating:
- Cellulose that has been properly installed in your walls will not settle.
- Cellulose is non-corrosive to steel, copper and aluminum.
- Cellulose will not lose its energy saving abilities over time.
- Cellulose will not rot, decay or mildew, and it does not support fungus or mold growth.
- Cellulose insulation manufactured from recycled paper is the least polluting and most energy efficient insulation.
- Cellulose has the highest post-consumer recycled content. The fiberglass industry averages 35% recycled glass, while the cellulose industry averages a minimum of 75% recycled content.
- It takes more than 10 times as much energy to produce fiberglass insulation as cellulose insulation.
- Due to air circulation and natural convection, the R-value of blown-in fiberglass insulation decreases by as much as 50% as the temperature drops from 45 degrees F to 18 degrees F.
- Cellulose has better resistance to air flow and prevents the upward movement of air caused by temperature differences (the R-value of cellulose actually improves during cold weather).
- Substantial and well-documented public health threats are associated with fiberglass.
- No adverse health effects from cellulose insulation have been identified.
Spray Foam Insulation
Spray foam insulation has better insulating properties than other common home and industrial insulating materials. Spray foam completely seals the area being insulated, which leaves no gaps to let heat and cold pass through.
Spray foam is not affected by dampness and its R-value is not reduced by moisture. Spray foam will actually seal small leaks in a house or building’s roof and walls to stop moisture from entering. This means that spray foam also reduces mold and mildew growth, water damage and odours.
Used as attic or ceiling insulation, spray foam will keep your building more comfortable year round and help support the structure of your roof.
Even better, spray foam insulation is now available in an environmentally friendly formulation.
You may be eligible to receive government grants and rebates for attic and roof insulation improvements. Ask your roofing professional about Canada ecoENERGY grants, Ontario Home Energy rebates, the Home Energy Audit program, and rebates from the City of Toronto’s HEAT program.
Juffs Roofing is here to help you! Ask us about roof and attic insulation for your home.