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Insulation is a critical part of the building envelope, acting like a blanket for your home. Insulation is measured in R-value which is a measure of how resistive a material is to heat flow. The higher the R-value the better the insulation is at preventing heat flow, whether it’s preventing heat loss in the winter or heat gain in the summer. Insulation should be completed in conjuncture with air sealing to ensure that the air and thermal barrier of your home are aligned which creates a healthier, more efficient home.
In an average American home 40% of heat loss is through the attic! Having a thick, even layer of insulation in the attic is key to reducing this heat loss and keeping your home efficient and comfortable. Current North Carolina building code specifies R-38 attic insulation in our region, which is typically 15”-16” of loose fill fiberglass blown on top of the ceiling. We can investigate your attic's needs and bring you up to code.
While the benefit of floor insulation is not as significant as attic insulation (only about 15% of your home's heat loss is through the floor), it is an essential piece of your home's thermal envelope. Most home's in our region have R-19 batt insulation installed on the floor, whether it is a crawlspace or a basement. This method is effective, but oftentimes we find insulation in bad condition and not properly installed. There are also other options for insulating the floor, like insulating along the foundation wall instead as a component of a closed crawlspace. We can help you determine what is best for your home and your energy and comfort needs.
Insulating exterior walls, while difficult and often not recommended, is a service we provide. Interior wallboard and exterior siding or brick make accessing each wall cavity challenging. While our approach toward improving energy efficiency is to look toward less invasive opportunities for improvement, sometimes installing dense pack insulation in walls is the right choice for a home.
Side attic spaces, found in many homes and very common to bonus rooms, have short walls that have exposed insulation on their back sides. This insulation is only half as effective if not installed and backed properly which negatively impacts the living space on the other side. Our skilled crew will air seal the kneewall, repair the wall insulation, and install a rigid insulation board on the back side of these walls. The result is a much more comfortable interior room, and a side attic space that is neater and cleaner which is great for storage in these areas!
Can an older home be cozy in the winter and comfortable in the summer? Can an older home be Energy Star rated? From our experiences my neighbor Kathy and I say “yes!” The home must be well insulated and the holes must be sealed. We each had our homes tightened up by Energy Reduction Specialists (ERS) of North Carolina.
Jo and Kathy, Greensboro