The Basics of Home Insulation in Massachusetts and Connecticut

Friday, January 13th, 2012 by Tay Wright

The Basics of Home Insulation in Massachusetts and Connecticut - Image 1Installing sufficient home insulation is one of the best ways to lower energy bills and increase comfort levels in your home year-round. It is especially important in states known for having cold winter months, such as Massachusetts and Connecticut. Contrary to popular belief, however, insulation isn't valuable only during the winter. During warm summer months, insulation is equally effective at preventing the transfer of heat, thus keeping your home cool and comfortable.

How Do I Know When Enough is Enough?

Home insulation is measured in terms of R-value, or resistance to heat flow. The greater the insulation's ability to resist the transfer of heat, the higher its R-value. So the more protection you want from cold winters and hot summers, the more insulation R-value you'll need.

Insulation R-values vary depending on the type of insulation (read more about insulation types below), including the insulation's density, thickness and material-type. A home insulation expert in MA or CT can determine the areas of your home needing insulation, which may include the attic, attic access door, air ducts, exterior walls, floors, basement, crawl space, garage, and/or cathedral ceilings.

An experienced home insulation expert can also visit your home to determine just how much insulation R-value you need, whether the job involves adding insulation to an existing home or installing new insulation altogether. In general, the recommended insulation R-values in Massachusetts and Connecticut are:

  • R49 - R60 for an uninsulated attic;
  • R38 - R49 for an attic with three to four inches of existing insulation;
  • R25 - R30 for floors;
  • R5 - R6 for uninsulated wood-frame walls;
  • R-5 for insulated wood-frame walls.

What Type of Insulation is Right for your Home?

There are many types of home insulation, each with a different purpose and R-value. Let's take a

look at two increasingly-popular insulation types.

  • Spray Foam Insulation: There are many advantages to spray foam insulation. For starters, this type of insulation both seals and insulates simultaneously. That's because spray foam insulation is sprayed into tight corners, cracks, or gaps and then expands to fill the space. Spray foam insulation is also waterproof and will not shift or settle like fiberglass or cellulose insulation.
  • Rigid Foam Insulation: Rigid foam insulation is extremely durable and has a high R-value. Like spray foam, rigid foam insulation will not settle. And unlike cellulose and fiberglass insulation, rigid foam boards will not soak up water or support mold growth.

Air Sealing

Before you hire a home insulation expert to fully insulate your home, he or she must ensure that the home is properly sealed. Why? Because if outdoor air (whether it be cold or hot) can easily enter your home through cracks or other openings, it will make even the best and most expensive insulation ineffective. An experienced home insulation expert knows just where to look for cracks and outdoor openings, and may perform what's known as a blower door test to discover attic leaks. Installing sufficient insulation and fully sealing your home will result in significantly lower energy bills and increased comfort year-round.

Get started today by contacting Dr. Energy Saver® CTMA with your questions regarding home insulation in Granby, CT and its surrounding areas!

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