The 3 primary materials used to insulate homes are:
Spray Foam. Spray foam insulation is an insulation and air barrier material that seals walls, floors and ceiling cavities against air movement, including spaces around electrical outlets and light fixtures and where walls meet windows and doors.
Cellulose. Cellulose insulation is the “greenest” of all insulation types because it is made from 80% recycled content. One of its primary advantages is sound-proofing. In most cases it is blown-in.
Fiberglass. Blown in attics and rolled in walls and crawl spaces, this is insulation in its most basic form. It’s the pink stuff.
Of these 3 materials, we often recommend spray foam because it is so versatile for homes in the Lexington area. Examples of where we use spray foam insulation are:
- Attics – we'll use open-cell spray foam on the back of a roof deck, all the way to the soffit, to completely contain the space and minimize heat loss into the open air above your home.
- Basements and crawl spaces – we'll use closed-cell spray foam to insulate the rim joists from edge to edge, which prevents both heat and vapor migration into your living spaces.
No matter where it's used, spray foam insulation has one of the highest R-values of any insulation type. It's a high-performing material that helps us get your home in sync – leading to greater comfort and lower utility bills.
Contact Us Today for a spray foam evaluation and installation! We are the premier home performance team in the area, we'll treat your home as if it were our own and we'll get the job done right.
FAQ: What exactly is an R-value anyway?
An R-value in layman’s terms is the amount of time it takes heat to radiate through a material. For example, R-19 takes approximately 19 minutes for heat to radiate through it. The problem with R-values is that they do not take air leakage into consideration.
Let’s take a look at the average home’s attic insulation. Most homes today only have insulation with an R-19 value, while current building code requires R-38 and Energy Star recommends as high as R-60. The average attic may have R-19 fiberglass insulation, but every electrical line and light fixture creates a leakage point for the air to pass through the insulation, taking heat with it.
A simple can light will create a hole in the insulation that will allow as much as 20 hours of furnace run time to be wasted over the course of a year. Can you imagine the waste created by 20 can lights? Insulation value is too easily negated by problems with air leakage. This is why we sync insulation with air sealing.
This is a conversation about gas furnaces, so if you have an all-electric heat pump or some other heat source then this article is not for you, but please check back soon since we will be writing about other forms of heating in the coming weeks.