What is a pirate’s favorite letter?
‘Arrrr!’ of course.
When it comes to choosing the insulation for your home that will maximize both your personal comfort as well as your energy bill savings, ‘R’ is also the most important factor.
An insulation’s R-value is the designation of its insulating power, and the higher the R-value the better the insulating power and thermal resistance of that insulation material. In Central New York, U.S. Department of Energy recommended R-values for attic insulation run between 49 to 60, walls should be between 19-21, basement walls 13-19, and floors from 30-38. Layers of insulation can be installed on top of each other to create the higher R-value.
The lower R-value figures in those recommendations provides minimal protection from heat gain or loss through the exterior of the home, although in some areas local building codes will call for higher levels. These are the barest minimum for insulating, and provide the least amount of return on your insulation investment dollar.
The higher numbers offer the best protection to keep you warm in cold of the winter and cool during the heat of the summer. Higher R-values are especially profitable in homes where there are higher-priced heat sources, and they usually meet all building codes requirements. The optimum amount of insulation keeps the furnace from running as much during the winter and also reduces the use of air conditioning in the summer by maintaining a comfortable temperature in the home – saving you on your utility tab at the same time.
Traditional fiberglass insulation comes in rolls of varying lengths or in ‘batts’ — packaged insulation resembling a roll but actually pre-measured and perforated into better manageable sections for when the job calls for a series of specific length pieces. Or for when you don’t feel like cutting it yourself. Insulation also comes with or without a Kraft paper backing that adds a block against moisture buildup. Sheets of plastic can also be used as a vapor barrier.
Besides the traditional fiberglass product, other insulation materials are also rated with R-values, including rigid foam panels, foil-faced foam sheets, blown-in cellulose, and even cans of spray foam.
Confused yet by all of the facts and figures you need to know to make the best insulation choice? Fear not — experienced help is only a phone call or a few keyboard strokes away. As always, Standard Insulating promises to save you money — call 738-1424 or log on to www.StandardInsulatingCo.com to find out how we can help with your insulation needs.