Insulation Options: Perks & Drawbacks

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Whether you live in a historic Carolina home that doesn’t currently have insulation, you are planning to upgrade your current insulation, or you are in the process of building a new house, deciding which insulation material is the best option for you can be a challenge. Modern consumers can choose from numerous products, which can sometimes be overwhelming. As you read this guide, you will discover the perks and drawbacks of a selection of popular insulation materials.

Before you start seriously considering any option, it is important for you to understand R-value and why it matters. The R-value of any insulation indicates its ability to prevent heat transfer, which essentially tells you how warm it will be able to keep your home. There are different R-value recommendations for the various regions of North Carolina and South Carolina. Those who reside in Charleston, SC, for example, can get away with a lower R-value than those who live high in the North Carolina mountains.

      • Batts and rolls of insulation – Batts, and rolls of insulation can be made from a range of substances, including fiberglass, plastic, and cotton or wool. Some insulation batts and rolls include facing, while others do not. If you want to add your own facing, kraft paper is the industry’s preferred option because it prevents water vapor from passing through the insulation. Batts and rolls are affordable and easy to find, but to reach recommended R-value ranges, 10-12 sheets typically need to be installed on top of one another, which can be problematic in some cases.
      • Foam board insulation – Foam board is a non-porous type of insulation that is great for new construction or major remodeling jobs. The primary drawback to using them in existing structures is that walls must be taken down, re-drywalled, and repainted in order to install foam board insulation. These panels can be used in roofs, walls, and foundations, making them incredibly versatile. They also have high R-values due to the fact that they are completely solid, so if you are building a home in one of the colder regions of the Carolinas, foam board is certainly worth looking into.
      • Blown-in insulation – Blown-in insulation is one of the most popular choices among American homeowners, in large part due to its affordability. It is typically crafted from environmentally friendly materials, such as cellulose made from old newspapers, recycled fiberglass, and even denim from old jeans. While the green factor is a definite plus, blown-in insulation doesn’t have as high of an R-value as other options, and it can start molding or disintegrating if water comes into contact with it.
      • Spray foam insulation – Many homeowners and home services professionals consider spray foam insulation to be the premium choice in the insulation industry. It has the highest R-value of any material on the market and is relatively easy to install, even in existing homes. The primary downside of this sort of insulation is that it tends to be significantly more expensive than other options.

If you are looking to invest in insulation soon, contact the team at Hatch Homes to learn more about how we can assist you. We live in the Carolinas, too, so we can help you understand what types of insulation make the most sense for your area. We’re here to answer any questions you may have about your upcoming insulation project, and we will be with you every step of the way until your job is complete.

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