One of the biggest expenses in a home is the energy used for heating and cooling.
This is the one place that a little foresight will not only save money but provide more comfort for the occupants as well. A few ways to make the home more energy efficient includes things such as air conditioning repairs, attic sealing and insulation.
Top quality insulation will help keep the home warm in winter and cool in summer. It will not only save money, but make use of renewable energy as well. An insufficient amount of insulation can result in condensation, causing damage to the roof framing.
Attic insulation requires a minimum of R-30 batts, with R-40 in colder climates. The area must also be well vented and a radiant barrier should be stapled between the rafters or just below the roof. This barrier will reflect heat and cold back toward the outside.
Poor protection in this part of the home will attract heat in the winter and cool in the summer from the heating or cooling units used. This reduces the efficiency of these units, costing loss of home comfort and energy. The attic area of the home becomes extremely hot in the summer, sometimes causing combustion if things are stored there.
Cellulose insulation is sold in home improvement stores in the form of bales. Many times a machine can be borrowed for blowing this material into the attic. The advantage of cellulose insulation is that it contains the mineral borate, which is both insect and fire resistant.
Although installation of this insulation can be done by the homeowner, it is advisable to have it and air conditioning repairs done professionally. The cost of the work and materials will depend on the size of the home, how accessible the attic is, how much insulation is needed, and so forth. Research has shown that the cost of attic installation and sealing will be recovered in 3 to 6 years.