Attic insulation is a cost-effective way to maintain the temperature of your house. It keeps the heat from escaping from your home during winter and stops the heat from coming in during summer. Your family's physical comforts are improved by consistent temperature inside your home in both seasons. Reducing your need for electric heaters or air conditioners, you save energy and money. However, if it still feels too hot and too cold in summer and winter respectively, it is time to take a good look at your attic and check your insulation for whatever improvement it needs.
- Find the gaps and seal them. Use a ladder to check your entire attic. With the help of a box fan, feel for air leaks. Using a sketch of the floor plan, you can find leaks that are typically found in areas where electrical fixtures, plumbing penetrations, ducts, and chimneys are located, including the pull down stairs. The efficiency of your insulation is reduced even if you add new insulation, unless you seal these leaks with weather stripping, caulk, foam or void fillers. Dirt also impedes your insulation's function. You will need to clean dirty insulation, so be prepared to do some cleaning when you are up in your attic.
- Measure the thickness of your insulation, as you may need to add more if you have less than three inches. An increase to at least six to seven inches deep is recommended. However, to be sure what is exactly required, refer to a professional who can also help you determine whether you need to add or replace your existing insulation.
- Add radiant barriers. You can place a radiant barrier directly over your existing insulation or have it affixed to the roof. Installing it on the underside of the roof deck, in cavity walls, and around door openings and pipes is also possible. Radiant barriers are materials with a reflective surface, typically a coating of aluminum. They reflect heat or cold that filters through the roof. Together with a properly installed and efficient layer of insulation, radiant barriers will help lower your energy costs.
- Add ventilation. Moisture can be trapped and molds can develop without proper attic ventilation. This will lead to deterioration of your attic insulation. Several kinds of ventilation you can use for your attic are soffit vent, continuous ridge vent, wind turbine, solar powered vent, exhaust vent, attic fans, and more. Improving your attic insulation improves the condition of your home as well as your family’s physical comfort. However, working in the attic is no easy job if you are not a pro. Bear in mind that getting into your attic could be dangerous. Have a plan and make a checklist of tools you need to bring with you, since you do not need the hassle of getting in and out and back again because you forgot something. You have to consider factors such as respiratory hazards, faulty wiring, rat droppings, not to mention excessive much heat if you are working in the summer. Take precautions, or better yet, call a professional to do the job efficiently.