While you may use your attic to store some of your personal belongings, its purpose is much more than that. In fact, it is designed to serve as a protective barrier against the heat, cold, and humidity. However, for the attic to be able to do its job properly, it needs proper insulation.
The North American Insulation Manufacturers Association, 90 percent of United States single-family homes do not have the proper insulation. If your home’s attic is not insulated or has not been insulated for several years, there is a good chance that the efficiency, safety, and comfort of your home is being compromised.
So, what exactly are the benefits of adding insulation to your attic? If you would like to learn more, keep reading.
Cooling and heating the home account for between 50 and 70 percent of all energy used in the average U.S. household. If your home is underinsulated or not insulated at all, you will spend more money attempting to maintain comfortable household temperatures. According to the EPA, you have the opportunity to save approximately 15 percent on heating and cooling expenses by sealing your home and adding insulating to crawl spaces, attics, and floors. The exact amount that you save will depend on a variety of factors, such as the design of your home, the lifestyle of your family, and the kind of heating system that you have, but you can expect significant energy savings that translate to large dollar savings. In fact, on average, homeowners can expect to save close to $800 per year.
If you can insulate your attic, you can prevent steady damage that can occur to your home, which is caused by moisture and heat. Insulation can help prevent water vapor from seeping into and eroding the walls. It can also slow down the buildup of heat in the attic, which can swell and crack the shingles on the roof to swell and crack or soften the plywood on the deck. It can also prevent ice dams from forming when snow that has melted refreezes on the edge of the roof. In addition, adding insulation to the attic can prevent mold that tends to thrive in moist, cool environments. Insulation can stop these issues from happening by lessening the effects of condensation.
Outside pollutants like dirt, dust, mildew, mold, and worse can seep inside your home via air leaks as a result of inadequate insulation. As time goes on, the accumulation of these toxins can significantly compromise the quality of your indoor air. Adding insulating to your attic helps to prevent these pollutants from entering and spreading throughout the home, allowing all household members to breathe a bit easier and enjoy an indoor environment that is cleaner. Additionally, removing old insulation and replacing it with new insulation can eliminate toxins that may have been present in the old insulation.
Heat naturally and gradually flows from warmer areas to cooler areas. And it is still possible for homes with modern HVAC systems to experience severe fluctuations in temperatures when they are lacking in proper insulation. This means that a home can become cold or hot quicker when there are temperatures changes outside, and it also means that rooms on higher levels can differ in temperature drastically from rooms on lower levels. A difference in temperature of 10 to 15 degrees between the levels in your home is a sure-fire sign that your home has inadequate insulation. The majority of American bedrooms are located on upper levels, which means that adding insulation is an effective way to ensure nighttime comfort as well as early morning comfort, which is when temperatures tend to be at their lowest.
Older houses are often drafty, and if the house also has inadequate insulation, the HVAC system will need to work overtime to hold a comfortable temperature. These temperature fluctuations can result in more exaggerated in houses where the ductwork runs throughout the attic. Adequate insulation in the attic helps to prevent cold air from lingering at the lower floors while the heat rises, which results in less overall wear and tear on the HVAC system. With minimal heat gain throughout the summer and heat loss throughout the winter, you will reduce your household’s reliance on the HVAC system while also maintaining an even year-round indoor temperature.
If you have been thinking about adding insulation to your attic, the autumn months are the most ideal time to contact a contractor to schedule service. To schedule an energy evaluation or for more information about the benefits of adding insulation to your home’s attic, give us a call at Structure Remodeling today.