I don’t know about you, but my energy bills continue to increase this winter. According to national projections, heating bills will rise 20% for oil households, 15% for natural gas, 13% for propane, and 5% for electricity. If you are tired of paying high heating bills like me, or of being too cold because you have your heat turned way down to avoid high heating bills, you may want to evaluate your home’s efficiency, in particular its insulation levels.
Unless your home was specially built for energy efficiency, you can likely reduce your energy bills by adding insulation, especially for older homes. Adding insulation can often pay for itself within a few years.
Attic and crawl space insulation is the perfect way to keep heat in your home and decrease heating bills. Who wants to keep their attic heated? Nobody. Yet, this is what we’re doing when we don’t have enough insulation.
Inspect Your Attic to Determine the following:
What type of insulation you have
The R-value and the thickness or depth (inches) of the insulation you have
The structural elements in the attics are often exposed, which makes it easy to see what type of insulation you have and measure its depth or thickness (inches). One quick way to determine if you need more insulation regardless of the type is to look across the span of your attic. If your insulation is just level with or below your floor joists (i.e., you can easily see your joists), you should add more. Make sure it has been laid evenly, too.
Determining Recommended R-Values
When you discover the R-values either from a Van Martin energy assessment, the home builder, or your own inspection, you can then use the U.S. Department of Energy’s Zip Code Insulation Calculator to determine how much you should add and where you should add it for maximum energy efficiency.
R-Value is a measure of insulation’s ability to resist heat flow. The higher the R-Value, the better. The recommended level for most attics is to insulate to R-38 or about 10 to 14 inches, depending on insulation type.
If you do need additional insulation or would simply like to learn more, please call Van Martin Windows & Roofing at (937) 222-7855. We can outfit your home with Owen’s Cornering, which offers some of the best insulation on the market.