This figure just amazes me: approximately 65 percent of U.S. homes are under-insulated, resulting in a considerable amount of wasted energy. If your home is as little as 5 to 10 years old, it’s very likely that yours falls within this category. Insulating your home is a very easy and affordable to reduce your utility bills almost instantly!
Insulation keeps heat in your home during cold months, but it also helps keep summer heat from entering your home, making it easier to keep it cool and comfortable inside. When people think about adding insulation, they think about using their furnace or heat pump less. But insulation does the same thing for air conditioning, which can help you save up to 20% on monthly heating and cooling bills.
Homeowners looking to step up their home’s insulation most often choose to add insulation to their attics. The attic is the easiest interior space to insulate – and it’s one of the most important. A moderately-skilled Do-It-Yourselfer can successfully complete an attic insulation project in about a day. In addition to improving the energy efficiency of your home, insulation also provides added comfort, sound control and an overall healthier home environment.
Spring is the ideal time of year to begin your attic insulation project, as the temperature is the most agreeable. (Attic temperatures in the summer are often too hot and in the winter may be too cold.) If you haven’t worked with insulation before, it’s important to know that insulation packages come in different sizes and shapes, and are identified as either ‘Rolls’ or ‘Batts’. Both contain exactly the same product, just in different sizes.
Batts are pre-cut sections of insulation made for fast installation and are generally used by contractors for new construction. Since the packages are large, it helps to have a truck to transport them. Rolls are long sections of insulation that are rolled up – and therefore are much easier to transport. You simply cut them to length according to the space you’re insulating. Below are some basic installation tips to review prior to beginning your installation project:
- Consider laying temporary flooring across the joists to provide footing, and be sure to use a temporary work light.
- Install the insulation at the outer edge of the attic space and work toward the center so you’ll have more headroom where cutting and fitting can be done.
- If the joist cavities are completely filled, lay the new insulation in long runs perpendicular to the direction of the joists, and use leftover pieces for smaller spaces.
- If the cavity is not completely filled, use the appropriate thickness of insulation to fill it to the top, adding an additional layer of insulation perpendicular to the joists.
- The insulation should extend far enough to cover the tops of the exterior walls, but should not block the flow of air from the eave vents.
- Insulation should always be installed at least three inches away from any metal chimneys, gas water heater flues or other heat-producing devices.
Owens Corning is the number one choice for versatile insulation products, and you’ll find the complete line of Owens Corning Insulation products at The Home Depot. Visit homedepot.com.owenscorning.com for more information about how to get started with insulating your home and to view all Owens Corning insulation products.