As the cool temperatures of fall and winter start to arise, many homeowners are already beginning to dread the high heating bills that are associated with the season. While you may not be able to completely eliminate these, you may be able to reduce these bills by ensuring that you have proper insulation in your homes. Before you run out and purchase additional batts and rolls of fiberglass insulation, you may want to consider the benefits of spray foam insulation. It just may be the best choice.
The Purpose Of Insulation
Simply put the purpose of insulation is to reduce your heating gains and losses. It provides resistance to the flow of heat. The more resistance that your home has, the lower your energy bills will be.
Insulation is designed to keep the desirable elements in your home, and keep the undesirable elements out. While many homeowners think as these undesirable elements as being the outside temperatures, a well insulated home will do so much more than that. It will keep out insects, insects, and depending on the type of insulation that you choose to use, it can also keep out moisture. A well insulated home is not only cheaper to heat and cool, it is also more comfortable to live in.
Understanding The R-Value
To provide resistance to heat flow, insulation uses three basic principles. They are:
- Thermal conduction - This is the way that heat travels through a material. This allows the heat, or cold to come through your walls, roof, as well as your windows.
- Convection - The way heat moves through liquids or gases. It is the principle that supports the notion that warm air rises, and cool air sinks.
- Radiation/Radiant heat - This principle teaches that heat travels in a straight path, conveying its energy and warming anything that may be in its path.
Insulation works to provide resistance to conductive heat flow. How well it works is measured, and rated as its thermal resistance or R-value. This value is based on the type of insulation that you are using, the quality, the thickness, and the density of the materials. The higher your home's R-value or resistance to heat flow, the lower your energy bills.
Why Spray Foam Insulation Is A Better Choice
There are many different types of insulation. Energy.gov offers a great neutral explanation, as well as the pros and cons of most of the types on the market. While their opinion is neutral, they point out that spray foam can have an R-value that is approximately twice that of traditional insulation, but it offers so much more.
- Spray foam goes in wet as a liquid, and then dries and hardens. Because of the initial liquid form, it is easier to fill in all of the cracks and crevices that are in your home. You no longer have to worry about trying to fit insulation around pipes, duct work, or air exchangers that may be in your attic.
- Spray foam can be used with new construction, or in existing homes. Studies have shown that by adding spray foam insulation you will improve the shearing and racking strength of your home.
- Once it is dry, it will not expand and shrink based on the temperature. It will maintain its integrity no matter what the weather.
- It is a great way to ensure that your attic space stays waterproof. Without water in your attic, you will not have to worry about mold and mildew.
- Spray foam is a great choice for people with allergies. Since it will create a tight seal it will keep outside contaminants to a minimum without introducing fiber particles which can be found in some other forms of insulation.
Although this product is a little bit more costly than other types of insulation on the market, you owe it to yourself to consider adding it to your home. When you compare the benefits and read more info, you will find that it is worth the extra cost.