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Are You Paying Too Much To Heat Or Cool Your House?

Of course, we’ve all done this. We’re exhausted from a long days work and we just want to get a good night’s sleep. We lay down with confidence, knowing that we’re going to drift right off into a restful night sleep. Nope! We can’t stop thinking about the cost of heating and cooling our house. Do we have enough insulation that will allow our home to use its energy efficiently and save us money on energy bills? It all starts in identifying the type of insulation as well as how many inches in depth you have.

Insulation is just not something we EVER think about. Right? Well, I guess, most of us never think about it. It’s never really “top of mind” because there are 10,000 other things we are thinking about that keep us from a good night’s rest.

80% of the attics we enter are guaranteed to be drastically under-insulated, usually only having about 6″ of fiberglass batt insulation. That is HALF of what you need!

 

So why, you may ask, is it so important to have proper insulation?

  • Save You Money: The average utility savings we can provide after installing your new attic insulation: 20%-40% Savings 
  • Tax Benefits: The IRS provides a tax credit for home energy improvements (Tax Form 5695): 10% of Job up to $500 Tax Credit Savings
  • Eco-Friendly: Our cellulose insulation is made of recycled goods. It is not harmful at all unlike fiberglass insulation, which has a hazardous warning label.
  • Fire Retardant Our cellulose insulation is non-flammable unlike fiberglass
  • Borate Treated: Our cellulose insulation is treated with a borate, which is a built in pesticides that prevent harboring of pest. (spiders, rodents, etc…)
  • Soundproof: Our cellulose insulation is a great way to reduce sound inside of structures making your home more quite and comfortable.

Winter is rapidly approaching and if insulation is ever going to cross your mind it would be about this time of year. So, we thought we’d make this really easy so that you don’t have to lose any sleep.

We’ve created a step-by-step, simple to follow, process for you to check your own attic insulation. If you need further assistance in determining your insulation’s R-Value, call our office for a FREE inspection and evaluation.

Quick note – most homes have attic access in at least one of a few places:

  • Hallway access (between bedrooms) and generally have a drop down ladder
  • Closet access from one of your bedroom closets (you’ll need a ladder)
  • Walk-in access from the upstairs hallway
  • Carport access from the exterior of the home (you’ll most likely need a ladder here too)

So, here we go!

Step 1: Grab a ruler or a tape measure, and a ladder if you need it

Step 2: Find your attic access

Step 3: Access your attic (you may have to move your Christmas decorations or … whatever)

Step 4: Eye Spy your insulation

Ok, time out.

This is where we need to help educate a little so that you can determine your insulation status and you need to know just enough here to be dangerous. First of all, let’s talk about R-Value.

By definition, according to our friends at Merriam-Webster, R-Value is a measure of resistance to the flow of heat through a given thickness of a material (as insulation) with higher numbers indicating better insulating properties, i.e; R-30 has a greater resistance to the flow of heat than R-11.

Makes sense? Sort of? Ok, in layman’s terms, the more insulation you have the cozier you’ll be when its freezing outside. There, that makes sense to me.

But, how do I know what the R-Value is for my insulation? (I know, I just read your mind right?) Great question. See, each type of insulation has a specific R-Value PER INCH for that specific insulation. Here’s a chart that breaks down the most common types of insulation and their R-Values.

 

What you see:

What it probably is

R-Value per Inch

6″ of product

Loose fibers

light-weight yellow, pink, or white

2.5

R-15

dense gray or near white, may have black specs

rock wool

2.8

R-17

small gray flat pieces or fibers (from newsprint)

cellulose

3.7

R-22

Granules

light-weight

2.7

R-16

Batts

light-weight yellow, pink, or white

2.9

R-17

 

 

Just have to say two things … if you don’t see any insulation, please know that you most definitely need some and the chart above only uses 6” as an example. If you have more or less you’ll have to do a little math.

Step 5: Measure the depth of insulation in your attic

Step 6: Multiply the depth by the R-Value per Inch found in the chart above

Now you know what the R-Value is in your home. Congratulations, you did great! One more step, based on your new discovery you need to determine if what you have is sufficient or deficient, it’s one or the other.

Sufficient R-Value will provide comfort and energy savings. Deficient R-Value will help your utility company get rich, while making you energy poor. It can also create more work for your heater, and air conditioner in the summer, and reduce their efficiency and life span. Lastly, deficient R-Values will keep you from feeing all warm and cozy during the long winter months.

So, how do I know if I’m sufficient or deficient? Great question. Here’s a chart from the

U.S. Department of Energy which tells us exactly what R-Value we should have for our neck of the woods:

 

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screen-shot-2016-10-20-at-9-58-18-am

 

As you can see, the U.S.Department of Energy recommends higher amounts of R-Value the further North you’re located, and lower amounts the further South.

Step 7: Subtract your R-Value (which you determined in Step 6) from the recommended R-Value for your location. This is the amount of R-Value that you need for sufficient insulation.

How did you do? Do you have a sufficient amount of insulation? Are you deficient? If you found that you were deficient, honestly, you’re in good company. The truth is that most home builders never put enough insulation in our attics, and unless you’re losing sleep about it, most homeowners never even think to check.

Ok, so I found out I’m lacking in the insulation department and that I’m obviously losing money (maybe a lot of money) and I need to do something about it. Now what?

You’re just full of great questions! If you remember back to the first chart that gave the R-Values of specific insulation types, you’ll notice that cellulose insulation provides the greatest resistance to heat flow. That’s why we chose cellulose insulation for our customers.

We want our customers to save the most money possible and to be super comfortable in their homes. So, we install blown-in cellulose insulation for homeowners throughout our service area.

If you would like more information on our blow-in cellulose, make a quick call to our office and we will provide you with a pretty good idea of how much you can save in energy bills by speaking to one of our energy experts.

Don’t lose sleep tonight! The call is free and you’d be amazed at what a properly insulated home will do for your comfort, and your pocket.

 

 

Call today at 731-285-4982 or visit our website here.

731.285.4982

Have a Great Week,

Scott Riley

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