Posted on: 1 November 2016
If it seems like your power bill is higher in the winter than it used to be, it might be because you need to add insulation to your attic. Insulation can compress over time, or it can get wet from attic leaks and cease to work like it should. Adding insulation could improve the energy efficiency in your home and that in turn will reduce your power bill. While you can choose from a few different types of insulation to add, blown in insulation is often the best option. Here are a few things to know.
Apply It Over Existing Insulation
As long as your current insulation is not wet or moldy, you can have new insulation blown in over top of it. This will save you from the labor of pulling up old insulation that could release fiberglass, mouse droppings, or other dangers into the air that might circulate through your home. However, if you need to pull out the existing insulation, you will be able to blow in the new insulation without a need for some type of base layer. This makes the installation process fairly easy, although it does require specialty equipment to do the job.
Choose From Different Materials
When you hire a contractor to blow in insulation, you get to choose the type of material you want in your attic. Fiberglass is one option. It can be blown into your attic, but there is the risk that tiny bits of fiberglass will become airborne and float through your home. For that reason, the contractor might install a netting system over the fiberglass to hold it in place. The advantage of using blown in fiberglass over batts is that the blow in variety is able to settle itself evenly over the floor of your attic, and isn't confined to the shape of the batts that might leave small gaps uninsulated.
Cellulose is the more common type of blown in insulation. It is made from recycled paper and cardboard that is treated to be fire retardant. It is heavier than fiberglass, so it stays put once it is blown in. Although it is heavy, it is manufactured to be fluffy. This allows for air circulation that prevents mold. Plus, the trapping of air pockets improves insulating quality.
Prep The Attic First
To get the best insulation in your attic, you need to prep it before having the insulation blown in. This means you or the contractor will have to check your existing insulation and pull out anything that is wet after a roof leak. Next, small gaps and holes must be filled with spray foam so there are no leaks to the outside. Then, before the insulation is blown in, vents must be installed along the base of the walls. This keeps the insulation from pressing against walls and preventing airflow. The vents are made of plastic or foam, and they allow air to circulate throughout your attic so you won't have problems with increased humidity and mold.
Blow In The Insulation With Commercial Equipment
Once the attic is prepped, the insulation can be blown in. This is done with a blower machine and long hose. The machine is filled with the cellulose or fiberglass, and a long wide hose is attached. The machine sets outdoors and when it is flipped on, the insulation blows out of the hose inside your attic. The contractor points the end of the hose towards the far walls of your attic and fills the far areas first while working towards the center near the attic door. If your attic is more like a crawl space and very short, the entire space may be filled with insulation as long as it doesn't press against the roof. There needs to be a pocket of air several inches deep between the top of the insulation and the roof.
It is very convenient to install this type of insulation in your attic, and it can also be used between your walls. All you need is an access point the width of the hose. The contractor can fill the space with insulation without having to rip out drywall or make a huge mess in your home. Putting in new insulation in an added expense, but you should see some return on your investment in the form of reduced power bills and less wear on your HVAC system. Plus, you'll probably feel warmer during the winter months, and that's what makes having a well-insulated house worthwhile. Contact a professional, such as All Weather Shield Inc, for more information.Share