Let’s Compare 4 of the Top Home Insulation Techniques
As a contractor, it is important to stay on top of the latest techniques in every aspect of home construction. By having options for your clients, you can provide a well-rounded business, which keeps you busy and making money. Insulation is an important aspect of the home as it helps to cut down on energy usage and costs while providing comfort for the residents inside. The following four types of insulation are extremely effective at accomplishing these goals. Learning more about these types and reading up on industry trends like these will ensure you offer your clients the best options when it comes to innovative and effective home insulation. Having a variety of techniques in your arsenal simply gives you a competitive advantage above other contractors.
One popular option used in a wide array of home construction projects is spray foam. With spray foam insulation, the product creates an air barrier as well as insulates the home by sealing up the walls, floors, and ceilings and preventing air movement. With spray foam, the product can be sprayed into any open space between studs or frames. This option works well with new construction along with crawl spaces, attics, and rim joists. Because spray foam never loses its shape, it is an extremely effective medium to work with and fills gaps and crevices much better than most other types of insulation. It is much more preferable to the traditional loose insulation which takes more time to put into place. We are one of very few contractors on the east coast specializing in DAP Closed Cell Spray Foam. Advantages of this technology includes increased R-value, class A fire rating, increased durability, and moisture resistance. It is perfect for insulating crawlspaces and metal HVAC ducts, but bonds to any surface.
With foam board insulation, you have a more rigid option for home insulation. The boards are constructed from polystyrene, polyurethane, and polyisocyanurate and are cut to size to fit the area needed for insulation. This type of insulation requires more hands-on work than spray foam as the boards must be sized and cut into position depending on the area that needs insulating. In general, this type of insulation is best used under the roofing or over foundation walls, even beneath home siding.
Builders searching for a solution to problems involving wood vs metal studs should consider insulated concrete form construction or ICF. Products like Fox Blocks create energy-efficient and durable buildings that are not only highly insulated but also resistant to issues like fire, termites and moisture.
For decades, builders have used traditional wood studs and high-gauge metal to frame load bearing walls. By using ICF construction, it takes care of issues that can arise when dealing with metal and wood studs in residential construction. ICF is considered a superior alternative for framing load bearing walls.
Where ICF construction varies from wood and metal beams is that it creates a much more energy-efficient structure with a natural air barrier. The blocks used may reach an R-value of 23 as well as high thermal mass. Because of the quality insulation, the blocks are more fire and weather resistant and create sound-blocking acoustics for the residents inside.
When it comes to basement areas, below-grade insulation is becoming more commonplace. As you know, insulation in a basement area must be able to deal with excessive moisture, cold floor joists, and frozen pipes. With below-grade insulation, you have an solution that deals with these issues, helping the structure to be more energy-efficient and comfortable, while reducing refrigerant issues.
It is imperative that below-grade insulation be used in a basement space, whether it’s used for storage or a living area. With the higher moisture levels, the insulation type will help prevent mold and mildew growth inside the walls. When the wrong type of insulation is used in the basement area, it can lead to moisture issues and structural damage, which means an unexpected cost to the homeowner.
When it comes to insulation, focusing on the right option for each project is key. To be a successful homebuilder, insulation is one component that should not be skimped on. Stay on top of the latest developments in each category of insulation to ensure you know more about new products and how the home can be affected.
Matt Lee is the owner of the Innovative Construction and Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.