Do you notice that no matter how much weatherstripping you put on your home, it still feels drafty in the winter? Do your energy bills seem high, and are you always running the heater to try to stay warm? If this sounds familiar, you may need to install more ceiling insulation.
Inadequate ceiling insulation can drive your energy bills up in the winter and make your house a lot less comfortable. When you’re installing ceiling insulation, there are a few options you’ll have to choose from. Read on to learn more about how to choose the right ceiling insulation for you.
When to Install Ceiling Insulation
Most of the time, unless you’re building your own house, your attic will already be insulated. But depending on where you live, the insulation you have may not be enough to keep your house warm. About 25 per cent of your home’s heat is lost through the roof in an uninsulated home, costing you money and comfort.
If your ceiling isn’t insulated, putting in insulation will more than pay for itself in saved money on electricity bills. And if it is insulated, but your house still feels cold in the winter, it may not have enough insulation. You may also have insulation that includes asbestos if you have an older home, in which case you need to call a professional to haul it away immediately.
Fibreglass is the most common type of insulation you’ll see. It’s the pink stuff that comes in batts and blankets for you to install in your attic. It’s sized so that it fits between standard-width ceiling joists, making it easy to install.
Fibreglass insulation is one of the most affordable options out there, and it provides an exceptional level of heat conservation. But it can flake off when you’re installing it, and breathing it in can be damaging to your lungs. Be sure to wear a breathing mask while you’re working with it to prevent any inhalation.
Glasswool insulation known as Think Pink Aerolite now manufactured with TEL Fiberizing Technology is one of the most advanced insulation products on the market.
One of the new roof insulation products manufactured with PET Plastic bottles. (Coke, Fanta, Sprite etc) Isotherm Insulation is a dust-free and allergy-free roof insulation.
Mineral wool is another form of blanket insulation somewhat similar to fibreglass batts. You may recognise it as the batts of yellow pillowy material you see in ceilings sometimes. This insulation is formed by spinning molten mineral or rock material such as ceramic or slag.
Because mineral wool is spun from slag, it, too, is considered a green material since it uses the waste from mining operations. It holds its shape better than fibreglass, which can make it useful for sliding across spacious attics without having to crawl across the ceiling joists. It carries the same inhalation and mould risks as the other forms of insulation.
Foam board is a much thinner insulating option than any of the other three we’ve mentioned. This insulation comes in large, lightweight boards that have a Styrofoam-like material in between two reflective sheets. They can be cut to size using a standard box-cutter and will stand up on their own very well.
Foam board doesn’t have quite the insulating properties that the other insulations we’ve mentioned do, and it’s a little more expensive. But it can be great for insulating walls or doors in your attic. It can also be a good option if you think you may want to finish out your attic in the future and you want to save the space.
If you need to insulate a small area or close up gaps, spray foam is as good as insulation options get. This foam expands in place when you spray it, filling up any gaps completely. It’s easy to saw or cut away once it’s hardened, and most of it is paintable, making it a good option for closing gaps in the house, too.
Spray foam is not a practical option for insulating your whole attic. But if you have small gaps, you need to fill; this stuff makes a fantastic option. You can apply it directly to the underside of your roof decking if required, which also makes it a good choice for finishing an attic space.
If you have an attic with a lot of nooks and crannies to fill in or if standard insulation batts aren’t getting it done for you, loose-fill insulation can be a great option. Loose-fill insulation is made of fibreglass or cellulose and is blown in using specialised equipment. You’ll need to hire a company to put this kind of insulation in for you.
Loose-fill insulation can be a fantastic eco-friendly option since it can be made of up to 90 per cent recycled materials. Like other fibreglass insulation, it can be dangerous to breathe in, so wear a mask when you’re working around it. And if loose-fill insulation gets wet, it provides an ideal environment for mould to grow.
Before you start installing your ceiling insulation, be sure you fix any roof leaks and make sure all exhaust fans and vents go to the outside of your house. Insulation is prone to mould, and you don’t want to spend all the money and time putting in new insulation only for it to get wet and start growing mould.
You should always wear a breathing mask, safety goggles, and gloves when you’re working with insulation. If you need to move around in the attic, lay a piece of plywood or a few sturdy boards across at least three joists and use those as a walking surface. And bring some battery-powered lanterns with you to illuminate dark corners and make your work easier.
Learn More About Ceiling Insulation
Putting in new ceiling insulation can save you a lot of money and make your home more comfortable this winter. Picking the right kind is a matter of knowing how much insulation power you need and how you prefer to install it.
If you would like to take the first step towards making your home more comfortable, get in contact with Roof Insulation they are experts in the field of thermal insulation. We are the leading suppliers and installers of high-quality insulation in South Africa. Learn more about our ceiling insulation services today.