Insulation: Types Of Insulation Products Availiable And Also Gives Pros And Cons In Terms Of The Environment For Each Type.

1269 words - 5 pages

Heating and cooling account for 50 to 70% of the energy used in the average American home. Using energy efficient insulation is one of the fastest and most cost-efficient ways to use a whole house approach to reduce energy waste and save money. A good insulation system includes a combination of products and construction techniques that if used correctly, can make the air in your home cleaner, keep the home warm, and control moisture. By properly insulating your home, you can also save 30% on your heating and cooling bill.There are four main types of insulation - batts or rolls, loose fill, rigid foam boards, and contractor applied foam. All different types are made to fit in a different area of the home. Batts are made to be placed between studs in the wall. They are also placed between the rafters of your ceiling or floor. Batts are usually made with fiberglass (made from sand and recycled glass) or rock wool (made from basaltic rock and recycled material from steel). Rolls, also called blankets, are used in the attic floors. Rolls are most common type of fiberglass insulation. Batts and rolls have an R-value of approximately 3.2 per inch and cost between 1.8 and 2 cents per square foot.Loose fill insulation is more of a liquid form of insulation and can be blown into the attic or walls. It is made out of fiberglass, rock wool, cellulose, or cotton. The R-value of loose fill insulation ranges from 2.2 to 3.7 per inch. Loose fill insulation varies in thickness and is relatively cheap to apply costing between 1.6 and 2 cents per square foot.Rigid foam boards are a type of insulation that is not fluffy like usual insulation, but is hard or stiff. It is made out of various polystyrene products. The boards are lightweight and provide formation support to the building. Rigid boards can be used in walls, ceilings, foundations, and even in the roof. The R-values of rigid boards range from 4 to 6.5 per square inch. The cost of rigid board insulation however can be anywhere from 3.6 to 7.2 cents per square inch.Contractor-sprayed insulation is foamed into open or closed cavities and is better for the environment. Foamed in place insulation is typically made out of various types of polyurethane but can also be a type of magnesium silicate or icynene (which contains no CFCs or HCFCs). Foamed in place insulation R-values range from 3.5 to 8 per inch. Foamed in place insulation is new to the market but is seeing increased usage because of its longevity and environmentally safe characteristics. Purchasing this type of insulation, however, can cost you a pretty penny at 8.4 to 12 cents per square foot.An energy-efficient house has a much higher insulation R-value than required by most local building codes. An R-value is the ability of a material to resist heat transfer. The lower the R-value is, the faster the heat loss. For example, a typical house might have insulation of R-11 in the attic or ceilings while the floors and foundation walls may not be...

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