Insulation added during the construction of a home or building is considered new construction insulation. However, retrofitting with insulation is sometimes required insulation can settle over time or it may be installed incorrectly.
You should consider re-insulating your home if you notice that your energy bills are increasing, your house is drafty, or that temperatures vary from room to room. If you’re thinking of installing insulation retrofit, you should seek advice from a local Tulsa Insulation professional.
Insulation For New Construction
When a house is being built it’s the ideal time to add insulation. It is less expensive and more straightforward than insulating an existing building, and it provides a chance to get it right from the start, avoiding energy waste in the future.
Local or state building codes often specify minimum levels of insulation for different areas of a home or certain types of construction. Adding this insulation at the time of construction will help ensure that the R-values specified are met, and may also make you eligible for rebates from your electric company.
The most common way to insulate a new home is to fit sheets of rigid foam insulation to the wall sheathing. This will provide a good thermal barrier between the outer walls of the property and the interior studs, preventing heat loss from outside and air conditioning loss from inside. A variation on this is to use a so-called ‘flash and batt’ method, in which closed cell spray foam insulation (often cellulose) is applied at the rate of 1- to 2-inches before fiberglass batts are installed. However, we don’t recommend this approach due to the various problems it can cause.
There are also options to insulate the roof and floor of a new building, to maximize the energy efficiency of the building. These include fitting mineral wool fibre between the rafters, or putting rigid foam insulation boards on top of the joists.
A more radical option is to use systems like insulated concrete forms (ICFs) or structural insulated panels (SIPs) which provide the structure of the house as well as the insulation. These are assembled by hand, with each panel glued and nailed to its neighbor until a complete story is constructed. They both maximize insulation by forming a continuous airtight barrier, and they can be used in timber frame buildings as well as conventional brick and block ones.
There is also a range of other options for insulating new builds, such as blown-in fiberglass loose-fill insulation and wet-sprayed cellulose or Icynene spray foam. The latter can fill difficult-to-see voids and awkward attic spaces, helping to make a comfortable house, affordable to run and designed to perform as it should for years to come.
Insulation For Retrofitting
Insulation can be added to existing buildings during construction, but it’s also possible to retrofit insulation into homes and structures. This is known as re-insulating, and it is much more cost-effective than building a new home from the ground up. The professionals will be able to advise you on what’s best for your situation and your budget, as well as complying with city regulations.
Many signs indicate you need to re-insulate your house or building. These include high energy bills, drafty rooms, and varying temperatures between different parts of the house. However, the most important factor is to check if your existing insulation has been placed correctly. Incorrectly positioned insulation will settle over time, meaning that the benefits of your investment will be lost.
Depending on your building type, the most appropriate type of insulation will vary. For example, if you have a metal frame structure, it may be better to use reflective insulation rather than traditional fiberglass batts. This is because metal studs and joists are more difficult to insulate, as heat flows through them much easier than wood.
The other major consideration is deciding whether to use blown-in or injected insulation. Blown-in insulation is generally cheaper, but injected insulation can be more environmentally friendly and provide a more thorough coverage. It’s important to find a professional installer who will guarantee their work. This will ensure you get a qualified installer who is committed to high standards.
It’s worth mentioning that if you’re looking for green options, there are plenty of them available. For example, sustainable cellulose, cork, or wool are all becoming more popular. A site suggests that if you’re considering using a natural product, try to choose one that comes from a local supplier and is recycled at the end of its life cycle.
Increasing the thermal resistance of a building’s envelope is one of the most accessible and affordable ways to reduce heating and cooling costs, as well as greenhouse gas emissions. This is especially important for older buildings, where the majority of energy use is for heating.
Types Of Insulation
Insulation is made of many different materials, each with its advantages and disadvantages. The type you choose depends on how much insulation you need and the R-values recommended for the area in which you are insulating.
The R-value is an indication of how well the insulation resists heat flow. Typically, higher R-values provide greater thermal resistance. Some types of insulation require professional installation, while others can be installed by the homeowner. Blanket insulation — available in blankets, rolls, or sheets and typically consisting of flexible fibers, most commonly fiberglass — is the most common form of home insulation. It can also be made from other materials, such as mineral (rock and slag) wool, cotton, or sheep’s wool. It is usually installed between wood-framed wall studs and attic or floor joists, although it can be used in metal-framed houses as well. Blanket insulation is available in a variety of thicknesses, with the R-value corresponding to its density and thickness. Foils, films, or papers fitted between wood-frame studs, joists, and rafters are effective for attic insulation as well. They can be rolled or bubble-formed, and are especially good at preventing downward heat flow.
Spray foam is a good option for insulating the attic floor and walls of new construction homes, as well as retrofit applications. It is available as loose-fill or blown-in insulation, made from materials such as cellulose (recycled paper), fiberglass, and blown rock wool. It is particularly suited for hard-to-reach areas, such as attic floors and walls, and is excellent for insulating sheathing boards.
It is also useful for insulating air ducts and the attic floor of existing homes. However, a few drawbacks to foam insulation include its higher price tag and the fact that it can’t be applied to existing ceilings or walls without damaging them.
Structural insulated panels (SIPs) are prefabricated insulated structural elements that are built into the walls, floors, and roof of a house. They offer superior and uniform insulation compared to more traditional stud or “stick frame” construction methods and can reduce build time as well. They are particularly suited for cold climates and can make a house more energy-efficient, quieter, and more comfortable.
Benefits Of Insulation
Insulation is a key component of green construction. It reduces energy consumption and the associated greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming. It also helps to control the indoor temperature of a home, which is good for human health.
When a home is properly insulated, it becomes much more comfortable to live in. This is because the occupants aren’t relying as heavily on heating and cooling appliances to maintain the desired temperature. In addition, a well-insulated home is quieter because it reduces outside noises.
Depending on the type of insulation chosen, there are additional benefits to its use. For example, insulation with a high sound transmission class rating can improve the acoustics of a building. It can also be used to provide fire protection in the form of firestop systems and to seal air ducts and electrical and plumbing conduits. Insulation can also be used to cover radiant barriers in the roof or attic, which is a great option for hot climates.
The most obvious benefit of adding insulation during new construction is the energy efficiency of the building. This can be achieved by using the right R-values for each area of the building, which can be determined with the home energy-saving tool. Insulation can also be installed in conjunction with other energy-efficient products such as insulated concrete forms and structural insulated panels (SIPs).
Another important benefit of insulation is its environmental impact. Many types of insulation are made from recycled materials, including fiberglass batting and loose-fill cellulose. Some are even made from renewable sources like cotton and sheep’s wool. Additionally, there are several environmentally friendly man-made products available, such as polystyrene.
If you’re building a new home, ask your builder about the amount of insulation they will include. If they don’t have a good answer, consider talking to other local builders and choosing one that is familiar with energy-efficient construction methods. They’ll be able to help you select the amount of insulation needed and ensure that it is correctly installed.
If you’re retrofitting an existing building, consider increasing the amount of insulation to achieve the recommended R-values for each area of the structure. You can also use the home energy-saving tool to determine the amount of insulation that is recommended for your home and its climate zone.