Insulating an Attic

Have you been feeling a little cold in your house lately? Noticing your energy bills creeping upward? Seeing areas of your roof where snow melts more slowly than others? Perhaps you’ve detected moldy odors in your attic or seen mold growing on the framing.

All these signs indicate you need more attic insulation.

Attics need to be thermally separated from the rest of the house to keep warm air out. Warm air raises humidity levels, which promotes mold growth. It also heats up the roof and creates ice dams that break down the roof covering and cause leaks. And, of course, losing heat through a poorly insulated ceiling will drive up your heating costs

There are many types of attic insulation. One factor to consider when choosing between them is how much thermal protection your attic needs.

R-value, a measure of thermal resistance, varies by location. R-30 is the minimum requirement in Southern states and R-49 for Northern states. Ease of installation is another thing to think about, especially if you plan to do the work yourself.

There are also environmental considerations, although most insulation materials are made from abundant or recycled materials.

Here’s a rundown of the four types of attic insulation materials and installation methods at your disposal.

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