The key to energy efficiency at home is proper insulation. Without insulation, your home would have a substantial number of air leaks, allowing heated or cooled air indoors to escape while leaving your home vulnerable to the elements. Proper insulation can also help to reduce the risk of moisture damage. Which areas in your home should be insulated? Here is what every homeowner needs to know.
Good insulation starts in the attic, which is the final barrier between the elements and your home. Typically, attics are insulated with loose-fill or batt-and-fill insulation , though loose-fill is often preferable because it can provide better coverage. The easiest way to find out if you have adequate insulation in your attic is to measure it. If you have less than 11 inches of fiberglass or rock wool or eight inches of cellulose material, you don’t have enough protection. Contact an insulation company to seal any existing air leaks and add additional insulation material.
Exterior Wall Insulation
Even if your attic is properly insulated, your home could be drafty during the winter months and too hot during the summer if your exterior walls lack insulation. Although adding insulation to exterior walls can be pricier than attic insulation, it is usually worth it given the long-term savings on your energy bills and the additional comfort you’ll enjoy in your home. If the only change you’re making to your home is adding insulation to your existing walls, spray-foam insulation is usually the best choice, because it requires the least amount of disruption for your walls. If you are remodeling your home or building a new home, your insulation company may recommend other types of insulation.
Basements should be insulated whether they are conditioned spaces or not, because of their close proximity to your living area. If you are building a new home, request that insulation be added to the exterior walls. In an existing basement, you can add insulation to the interior walls, since making changes to the exterior walls of a basement is not possible. Multiple types of insulation are ideal for basements, including batt and roll, loose-fill, and spray foam.
Our insulation experts can help you determine if your home is under-insulated and assist you in picking the right kind of insulation to boost your home’s energy efficiency. With more than 40 years in the insulation business, you can be confident that we’ll get your job right. Find out more about our services and the benefits of insulation on our website , and also check out our blog for more advice about using insulation to make your home more efficient.
Insulation is one of the most important components of a home, reducing heat and sound transfer for a more efficient and comfortable living environment throughout the year. However, because this vital element sits out of sight and out of mind, many homeowners aren’t up to date on the function and needs of their insulation. Understanding how your insulation works, where it should be installed, and when it needs your attention will help you reduce discomfort, energy loss, and even repair costs associated with this vital part of your New York home.
Once installed, insulation never needs replacement.
Just like other materials in your home sustain wear over time, your insulation can also suffer from wear and tear. Although insulation products are designed for long-term function, insulation that has become damaged or dislodged may need replacement. If your home has suffered a severe pest or mold infestation, flood, fire, or other type of major damage, it’s important to have a home energy expert inspect your insulation as well. Leaving damaged or worn insulation in place will only continue to increase your energy costs over time, while insulation that has been affected by pests or mold could contribute to poor indoor air quality inside your home as well.
Spray foam insulation is waterproof.
Icynene spray foam is a popular and efficient insulation solution often used in attics and other areas that may be prone to leaks. While spray foam insulation may feel rigid and waterproof to the touch, not all spray foam insulation products are waterproof or even water resistant. Open cell spray foam products are not rated for any type of water resistance, and will absorb rather than repel moisture on contact. Even low-density closed cell foam can retain water with prolonged exposure; only high-density closed cell products provide true waterproofing.
Only new homes need to worry about installing insulation.
Many homeowners assume that because their home is older, sufficient insulation was installed during construction, leaving the current occupants with no worries in this regard. However, many homes were constructed with inadequate or insufficient insulation, leaving them uncomfortable during extreme temperatures and prone to high energy costs. Even if your home is already several years or decades old, it’s never too late to add insulation. There are several insulation products, such as spray foam and cellulose insulation, that can be added without causing damage to your home and no need to tear down or replace your walls and other finished areas.
Higher R-value is always better.
Insulation products are rated with a number called R-value, which describes the product’s resistance to heat transfer. Higher R-value means greater resistance to temperature changes, which ideally improves an insulation product’s ability to keep your home comfortable throughout the year. While it’s true that installing an insulation product with a higher R-value should reduce your energy costs, R-value is only half of the equation when it comes to the final performance of any insulation product you choose. Installation method can also have a dramatic effect on the final function of your insulation. This is why it’s vital to choose an insulation installer experienced with the product you choose to make sure the installation process is completed properly for the very best results.
Are you looking for answers and information about home insulation and soundproofing in the New York City area? Our experienced insulation professionals are here to provide the expert advice, information, and services you need to ensure your home is comfortable and efficient. Please visit our website for information about our insulation products, or click through our blog to learn more about home insulation performance.
Installing new insulation to replace an old product or improve the comfort and efficiency of your home is a smart investment that will provide rewards for years to come. Especially if you’ve never scheduled insulation service for your Long Island home before, knowing what to expect, how to prepare your home, and the steps your installer will take to complete this task will help this process proceed more smoothly.
Have Your Home Energy Audited
An energy audit is often the first step in the insulation installation process. Energy audits are services that evaluate the efficiency of your home by looking at factors such as the quality and performance of the insulation you have installed, as well as the condition of windows, doors, and other access points that may allow conditioned air—and energy—to escape from your home. An energy audit also evaluates your HVAC system to check for common issues such as duct deterioration or leaks, which can cause air loss within your home that could be costing you extra money as well. Once your energy audit is complete, your service technician will help you determine the best insulation for your needs and whether services such as HVAC maintenance or repairs should be performed prior to insulation installation to ensure maximum comfort and financial benefit.
Ask About the Installation Process
Most attic insulation installations can be completed in as little as two hours, but larger attics or more extensive insulation services could take several hours or even a few days. Talk to your insulation service about the estimated length of installation and make sure to schedule this service for a time you won’t feel rushed or otherwise concerned about your schedule. You may also want to ask about the number of installers to expect and the amount of noise the work may generate. If you have a family pet or young children that might be bothered by the noise or activity, you may want to arrange for them to spend the day elsewhere while installers are present. Alternatively, keeping your pet in a bathroom or bedroom while workers complete your installation is a great idea for safety and convenience.
Expect Some Dust
Your insulation installers will take care to keep your home as neat and clean as possible throughout the process. Installers will also respect your property and let you know if any valuables or decorations should be moved from the area before work begins. However, some insulation products can generate dust during installation, particularly cellulose fibers. While this dust is not harmful, it can remain in your home after work is complete, so plan to change your HVAC filter after your workers leave and check back in a few weeks to determine if your filter needs changing again. If possible, airing out your home using fans or by opening windows for a few hours can help to clear dust from insulation work as well.
We are pleased to offer both comprehensive insulation and general HVAC services in Long Island and the New York metropolitan area. Our service experts can help you with every step of your insulation installation, from helping you choose the best insulation product for your needs to ensuring your HVAC system and home are ready prior to our professional insulation installation service. If you’d like to learn more about our products and services, including attic and basement insulation, Icynene spray foam insulation, soundproofing, flooring, and energy audits, please visit our website or check out our blog .
Insulation is designed to retard the natural process of heat transfer. The laws of thermodynamics state that heat wants to move from warmer areas to colder ones. When the weather outside is warm, this warmth tries to enter your home to heat up the air that’s been cooled by your air conditioning system. In the winter, the warm air inside your home will try to escape to heat up the colder air outside. The efficacy of your home’s insulation in preventing this process from occurring is measured by the product’s R-value. Understanding how R-value works and the types of products available today can help you choose and install insulation with the right R-value for your needs.
R-value is a measure of a material’s ability to resist heat transfer. The larger an insulating product’s R-value, the better it is at keeping the conditioned air you want inside your home and preventing the transfer of heat into or out of your living environment. R-value is calculated by measuring the amount of heat transfer that occurs through a given material per unit of area and per unit of time; while each type of insulation has a unique R-value that cannot be changed, you can increase the ability of an insulating material to resist heat by increasing the thickness of the product to achieve a higher overall R-value. This allows you to balance factors such as R-value with cost to ensure you can find an insulation product that meets both your needs and your budget. For example, a thinner insulating product with a higher R-value may be appropriate in areas of your home with fixed or limited space, such as behind walls and beneath floors. By contrast, you may opt for a thicker insulating product in an unfinished basement or attic, where you appearance doesn’t concern you.
With many types of insulation and many insulating products available, it can be difficult for a homeowner to know the best R-value for the insulation in his home. The US Department of Energy has developed a list of recommended R-values for homes based on their location, which allows for the calculation of the necessary R-value for home comfort and energy efficiency due to the average temperature and weather conditions. New York and Long Island fall within the Department of Energy’s Zone 4, for which an R-value of 38-60 is recommended for attics and an R-value of 25-30 is recommended for floors. Using this information, you and your insulation installers can determine whether your existing insulation is sufficient for optimal home comfort and energy savings, or whether you might consider adding to or replacing your insulation to achieve a higher R-value and keep your energy bills as low as possible throughout the year.
Our home insulation contractors on Long Island can help you evaluate your insulation’s current R-value to determine whether you might benefit from additional insulation installation to improve your home’s thermal stability. We can also guide you through the process of choosing the right insulation for your budget, your preferences, and your needs, including spray foam insulation and eco-friendly insulation options. You can continue reading through our blog to learn more about home insulation and its long-term value, or contact us via our website to get started on a home energy assessment today.
Insulation plays an important role in the comfort of your living spaces and the energy efficiency of your home. This important material sits behind walls, beneath floors, and above ceilings in spaces that are out of sight and difficult to access, which may lead you to believe that your insulation cannot be damaged by issues that affect the more visible areas of your house. However, there are several factors that can affect the condition of your insulation without your knowledge, causing it to perform poorly and possibly require replacement, depending on the type of damage and the type of insulation you have installed. If you have questions about your insulation or the steps to take if you believe it has been damaged, your Long Island insulation installer can provide you with more information and professional assistance.
Insulation and Moisture
Moisture is one of the most common causes of damage to all parts of the home, including the insulation. In particular, fiberglass batting insulation is highly susceptible to damage associated with moisture from leaks or high home humidity, which can reduce the efficacy of the insulation and cause mold and mildew to spread throughout the material, posing a health hazard to your family. Roof leaks are a frequent cause of moisture accumulation in your attic, while basement flooding and interior plumbing leaks can affect the condition of the insulation elsewhere in your home. Poor attic ventilation can also cause moisture to accumulate inside your attic in the form of high humidity, which frequently leads to water damage over time. If you have recently dealt with a roof leak or plumbing issue, it’s a good idea to consider the effects of this situation on your insulation. Even if your insulation won’t allow mold to grow after exposure to water , it may still shift or sag when wet, and may also transfer moisture to other materials in your home that are susceptible to mold growth.
Insulation and Pests
Pests are another very common cause of insulation damage. There are several pests that have the ability to damage home insulation, including termites and other insects, rodents, birds, raccoons, and bats. If you have recently suffered a pest infestation anywhere in your home, your insulation could have been damaged by this issue as well. Although spray foam insulation is typically pest-resistant, many other types of insulation, including fiberglass, foam board, and several eco-friendly products, may sustain pest-related damage, regardless of how many animals or insects were found in your home. Pests often burrow through insulation to reach your home’s interior, while some animals and insects may actually nest inside the insulation itself, leaving behind droppings and damage that can affect your indoor air quality in addition to reducing the performance of the insulation product. Hiring an insulation contractor to inspect your home’s insulation after a pest infestation is the best way to ensure that there are no lasting health or energy effects; in some cases, heavy infestation may require the replacement of the insulation in affected areas.
Keeping your home’s insulation healthy and in good repair will keep your energy bills low and your living environment comfortable and allergen-free. We invite you to explore our website to learn more about the services offered by our insulation contractors in Long Island, including home energy audits and insulation installation and retrofitting. If you’d like more information about popular home insulation products and how to get more from your insulation, please check out our monthly blog .
Your home should provide an ideal living environment for every daily activity you can imagine, from watching your favorite movies to relaxing with your favorite book and a minimal level of noise. Insulation and soundproofing work hand in hand to create a more comfortable home environment, both by regulating temperature and by minimizing sound transfer from room to room. If you are looking for ways to maintain the peace and quiet you want throughout your home, retro insulation services could be the ideal solution for you.
Understanding the Types of Noise Pollution
Noise pollution refers to any noise you may hear in an area of your home that disturbs the indoor environment you want. There are two major types of noise pollution: airborne noises, such as talking, music, and traffic sounds, and impact noises, such as the sounds associated with walking and other movements, which are then transferred through the structure of your home from one area into another. Understanding the contributing factors to the noise pollution in any room will help you and your insulation installers develop an effective plan to eliminate the transfer of these noises through your walls, ceilings, and floors, so you can enjoy a quiet and calm living space.
How Insulation Eliminates Noise Pollution
Traditional thermal insulation is designed to stop the transfer of heat from one area of your home to the next, which in turn reduces the amount of heating and cooling needed for a comfortable living environment by lowering the amount of conditioned air lost to attic and basement spaces, as well as the outdoors. While thermal insulation can reduce sound transfer as well as heat transfer, it is often not specifically designed to stop sounds and vibrations from moving through your home’s structure. However, specialized insulation soundproofing systems are manufactured with sound- and vibration-stopping properties, which improves their ability to isolate noises and create quieter spaces within your home. The placement of your soundproofing system will determine the type of noises it is meant to block—soundproofing insulation installed in exterior walls will help to eliminate outside noise, such as from a busy road or nearby playground, creating a more confined and quiet home interior. If you want to stop noises in one area of your home from affecting adjacent spaces, insulating interior walls , floors, and ceilings is the key to maintaining quiet spaces even during activities such as home theater usage, active play, and exercise.
Tips for Effective Soundproofing
Soundproofing can be performed throughout your entire home, or simply added to contain noise within certain areas. If you are working on a budget, identifying the spaces where the most noise occurs and adding soundproofing insulation to these areas is the best way to reduce noise transfer without the need to retrofit your entire home with a soundproofing system. Simply adding soundproofing insulation to the exterior wall facing a busy road or around your home theater space can make a significant difference in your home’s indoor environment, helping to muffle the sounds you are specifically looking to eliminate. Other areas that are frequently soundproofed for comfort and convenience can include bathrooms, laundry rooms, garages and workrooms, as well as the ceilings that sit directly below tile and hardwood flooring, which transfer sound and vibration more easily and readily than carpeted floors.
If you’d like to find out more about insulation and soundproofing near Long Island, our insulation experts can help you choose the right soundproofing system to maximize your comfort at home. You can learn more about our insulation products on our website , or check out the latest insulation news on our blog .
Insulation is designed to help your home maintain a comfortable indoor environment using less energy. The insulation you install in your home retards the flow of heat either into or out of your home, keeping the temperature inside at the ideal level for you and your family. If you are planning to build a new home on Long Island, the design and construction phases are the very best time to install insulation in New York . Making sure your home is properly insulated from the very beginning will help you enjoy immediate comfort and energy savings that will last over the long term, without the need to add further insulation at a later time.
Determining Your Insulation Needs
The amount of insulation required for each home is different. Furthermore, while there may be a minimum insulation requirement written into your local or state building codes, these minimum requirements are typically far below the amount of insulation needed for a truly energy-efficient New York home. Before insulation is placed, it’s important to consult a professional to determine the amount and type of insulation that is best for your home, which is often determined by factors such as the size of the home, the number and orientation of its windows, and the type of HVAC system you are planning to install. Other considerations include whether your home incorporates a basement, crawlspace, or attic, as well as whether you plan to finish your basement, garage, or attic as a furnished living space. Finally, it’s important to consider the fact that insulation also provides soundproofing—if your home is located near a busy road or you have a large family with children, you may want to opt for an insulation material and configuration that will create an effective barrier against sound transmission.
Construction Factors That Affect Insulation Performance
Simply placing insulation in the appropriate areas of your home is only one step in creating a truly energy-efficient structure. There are several additional factors that will affect the long-term performance of your insulation, including air sealing and moisture control. Air sealing augments the efforts of your insulation by eliminating direct air exchange between your home’s interior and the outdoor environment. This may include adding weather stripping to doors and windows, as well as making sure the openings around vents and pipes are flush with your home’s exterior. Moisture control is another important factor in insulation performance and longevity, as insulation that becomes wet or damp can harbor mold and often degrades or loses its insulating properties over time. Vapor barriers and retardants should be installed in most areas where insulation is placed to keep insulation dry, while areas such as attics should be properly ventilated for continual airflow that reduces the risk of moisture accumulation.
If you have questions about insulating a new or existing home on Long Island, we offer the insulation services and solutions you need. Our experience staff can help you choose and install insulation and soundproofing to create your ideal home environment; please stop by our website to find out more about insulation and home energy audits on Long Island, or click through our blog for even more tips and news about insulation benefits and installation.
Both residential and commercial buildings can benefit from the comfort and energy savings provided by the right insulation system. Because commercial buildings are typically larger than residential homes, they cost more to heat and cool and often have more windows, doors, and other spaces through which conditioned air can be lost without proper insulation measures. Recent studies have discovered that as much as 33% of a commercial building’s utility bills are attributable to lost heating and cooling. If you own a commercial space such as an office, laboratory, or warehouse, insulating your property can protect your employees, your clients, and your products, while also helping you to save significantly on the cost of HVAC services.
Assessing Your Insulation Needs
When choosing the right commercial insulation for your property, it’s important to assess your needs. First, the type of building you need to insulate will affect your choice of insulation product, as a warehouse, manufacturing plant, or storage facility may have very different insulation needs than an office or convention space. Second, the type of insulation you choose will depend on characteristics such as your building’s size and the materials it incorporates, as some building materials offer more natural insulation than others. Third, you should also assess whether you want your insulation to provide additional benefits, such as pest-repelling properties or soundproofing, which can further protect your property from potential hazards and improve your employees’ workplace environment to boost productivity.
Popular Types of Commercial Insulation
There are several types of insulation that are commonly used for commercial applications. Rigid board insulation has a high R-value that offers excellent temperature control and energy savings, particularly in large spaces, but the initial cost of this type of insulation tends to be high. Fiberglass is a good low-cost alternative that works well in large cavities or empty spaces; this type of insulation is available as batts, blankets, and blown-in insulation for greater versatility across a variety of applications. However, fiberglass insulation doesn’t completely stop airflow through the material, and can become a home for rodents and pests without regular pest control and deterrent solutions. Cellulose and spray foam insulation are excellent solutions for sealing hard-to-reach or irregularly-shaped spaces, including the areas around pipes and vents. Mineral wool insulation offers excellent soundproofing, and is often used to mask both HVAC and other types of acoustic noise that may otherwise easily transfer between adjacent spaces. Ultimately, you may want to combine several types of insulation to achieve your overall energy efficiency goals, depending on the architecture and specific needs of your commercial space.
Whether you are getting ready to build a new commercial space or want to update an existing property, our insulation specialists are pleased to offer commercial insulation services in Long Island. We can help you choose and install the best type of insulation for your needs, including spray foam insulation, fiberglass insulation, cellulose insulation, and rigid board insulation. Please take a look through our website or check out our blog for more information about our insulation products and energy efficiency services.
Insulation plays an important role in any manmade structure. Although you can’t see it, your insulation is working around the clock to improve the comfort of your home. Whether you’re building a new home or making upgrades to an older one, the right amount and type of insulation is necessary for many reasons. Keep reading to discover just why your home needs insulation for comfort, as well as how to recognize when it’s time to upgrade or replace your existing insulation for energy-saving benefits.
The Purpose of Insulation
Insulation serves a valuable function in your home. By preventing the exchange of air and heat between conditioned and unconditioned spaces, you insulation helps to maintain the indoor air temperature achieved by your HVAC system. Without insulation, the heated and cooled air produced by your furnace and air conditioner would be quickly lost to the outdoors; the energy consumed by these appliances to condition your indoor air would also be lost in the process, drastically increasing the energy—and financial—cost of heating and cooling you home. Thus, insulation acts like a protective shell for your home, maintaining indoor air temperature and increasing the overall energy efficiency of your home.
Upgrading Your Insulation
Because insulation has such a significant effect on your home’s energy efficiency, inadequate or insufficient insulation can raise your heating and cooling bills while reducing your indoor comfort. Insulation should work in tandem with your HVAC system to maintain a comfortable temperature indoors, reducing the load on your furnace and air conditioner so they will run less, require less energy, and last longer. In New York, it’s recommended to use insulation with an R-value of 13-15 for exterior walls, 30-38 for cathedral ceilings, 38-60 for attics, and 25-30 for floors located over unconditioned garages, basements, and crawlspaces. Regardless of the type of insulation you have, it should completely fill the space between conditioned and unconditioned areas of your home with no visible holes or gaps. Two of the most common reasons homeowners consider upgrading their insulation are high energy bills and trouble maintaining a comfortable indoor environment, even when the HVAC system is efficient and in good repair. However, there are other conditions that also signal the need to upgrade your insulation. If your home has suffered a leak or flood that has affected your insulation, it should be replaced. Wet insulation is no longer effective at maintaining a barrier against heat transfer; moisture trapped inside your insulation can also promote mold growth, which may spread to other areas of your home. Additionally, if you have experienced a pest, rodent, or wildlife infestation in any area of your home, such as an attic, basement, or garage, the insulation in these areas may have been damaged by animal activity. It’s important to schedule an insulation inspection after handling any type of infestation to determine whether your insulation is still sound, or whether it is damaged and needs replacement.
If you have questions about home insulation, we have answers—please visit our website to learn more about the insulation products and services we offer throughout Long Island and the New York metropolitan area. You’ll also find more information online about retrofitting your insulation , opting for eco-friendly insulation materials, and scheduling a home energy audit to determine how you can save money on heating and cooling.
Insufficient insulation can cost you in terms of comfort and money, regardless of whether it is summer or winter. Many homes built prior to 1980 were insulated without the products, techniques, and knowledge that is used in homes built in more recent years. Fortunately, adding insulation to an existing home is a simple project that can eliminate uncomfortable drafts, allow for more even heating and cooling, and help you save 10-50% on your heating and cooling costs over the long term. If you’re wondering what upgrading or adding to your home’s insulation truly means, keep reading for more information about this process.
While an energy audit is not always necessary, this service can help you and your insulation installer determine exactly where and how much new insulation is needed in your home. During an energy audit , your entire home will be checked for issues such as poor weatherstripping, insufficient insulation, areas that allow for air exchange with the outdoors, and other issues that could be causing energy loss or a reduction in home comfort. Armed with this information, your insulation installer can determine which areas of your home need the most attention and how much insulation should be added to improve the energy efficiency of your home.
Adding Insulation to the Attic
Adding insulation to an unfinished attic is one of the easiest upgrades you can make. Your insulation installer can simply add fiberglass batting or spray foam insulation into the floor and sides of your attic to keep heated or cooled air from escaping into this space. If you have a finished attic or plan to finish your attic, the best solution may be to add insulation along the outer edges of the walls instead, where your roof meets your home. Insulation can be laid or sprayed directly between the joists in an unfinished space; in an attic that has already been finished, small access holes may be cut into the drywall or exterior of your roof to blow insulation into place with a minimum of disruption to your attic’s finished surfaces.
Adding Insulation to Your Walls
If the walls in the occupied spaces of your home need additional insulation, a small hole can be cut in your siding or drywall and a hose inserted through the hole into the cavity behind your walls. Loose insulation is blown into place, then the hole is patched to restore the surface after the process is complete. In some cases, it may be best to remove a larger portion of the drywall to insert new insulation—if you’re planning a remodel, it can be the perfect time to upgrade the insulation in renovated areas of your home as well. Talk to your insulation installer about your options; if you are concerned about damage to your siding or your walls, you and your installation service can explore other solutions to your energy loss problems in these areas.
Working with an experienced insulation professional will ensure that your Long Island home’s insulation is upgraded properly so you can begin benefitting from improved home comfort and lower energy bills immediately. We invite you to take a look through our website for detailed information about the insulation products and energy efficiency services we offer.