Living in an aged home doesn't mean that you need to deal with extremes in temperature throughout the year. Many homes that were built before the '80s were built without sufficient insulation. So, if you have such a home, you definitely need to improve your current insulation so that it is up to standard. This will ensure the home is comfortable throughout the year while helping you to save as much as 10 to 50% on your electricity and heating bills.
Now, the amount of money that you can possibly save would depend heavily on how much insulation you need to get as well as your particular heating system.
Be sure to look at the different types of insulation materials and check the label. The label should state the R-value per inch which shows the resistance to heat transfer. Learn more about R Values of insulation. So, bigger values would indicate that the material offers better insulation. In areas where there are tight spaces, you should use insulation that has a high R-value. When you need to insulate attics or basements, you'll have more room and you can get better insulation by utilizing a thicker layer of the insulating material if it has a low R-value.
Typically, when you add more insulation, you'll save more cash. However, there is a particular point where you'll spend more on the insulating materials than you'll save on your bills. This point varies according to the geographical area that you live. So, talk to your Department of Energy so you can get the correct insulation recommendation for your area.
One of the best places to start insulating is the attic since it will be very easy and inexpensive to do so. You can save even more money by ensuring that you deal with any air leaks and completely seal them off. By improving the insulation in this room from R-11 to R-49 you can potentially save as much as $600 per year in heating alone. Learn more here.
With that said, the amount of insulation you add would depend on your area, so make sure you find out the recommended amount. Once you get this figure, subtract the amount of insulation you already have. If you're unsure of these figures, be sure to do an online Home Energy Saver audit.
You can improve the insulation in your attic in two main ways. If you have an unfinished attic area, all you'll need to do is add insulating layers to the existing layers on the attic's floor. However, if you want to finish the attic, you can insulate the roof. This is a great method if there are any cooling or heating ducts in the area. It is also recommended if the area you live in is humid and you want to avoid a musty-smelling attic.
It is best to use sprayed foam polyurethane for insulating your roof simply because it conforms to the shape of your rafters. It effectively seals against water vapor and it has a great R-rating. It will cost you double the amount of loose-fill insulation, so keep that in mind.
If there is no insulation you can easily place insulation in stud bays. All the contractor needs to do is create holes on the exterior or interior of your wall and blow the material into it.
However, if you do have some insulation in your walls, then you most likely won't be able to add more without damaging the plaster and drywall. It is also not cost-efficient if you're not remodeling your home. Instead, it is better to wait a bit until you need to change your siding and then add insulation under the new one.
You may be familiar with the fact that hot air tends to rise, however, your home will easily lose heat in just about every direction. Therefore, you also need to insulate the bottom of your home as well as the sides and top. If you fail to insulate the bottom of your home you can experience 30% energy loss. When it comes to the attic, you can choose to either insulate the walls as if it is any other indoor room or you can insulate the floor and use it as an outdoor space or basement. If you choose to use it as an indoor area, you'll have to close off any vents that aren't related to exhaust.
Most people opt for floor insulation, however, wall insulating is quite beneficial. Wall insulation will cost you a lot less since you would need 33% less material if the area is 36 x 48 feet. One particular tip that many builders don't understand is that you can add a layer of rigid foam on the foundation and this will help a great deal in preventing condensation and moisture on your walls. If you decide to finish your basement you can use a stud wall filled with unfaced fiberglass insulation and drywall to cover up the foam.
Heat exchange through a surface like a roof, duct, attic, or wall is reduced by insulation. When a house is well-insulated, a lower amount of warm air will escape from the home in the winter, and during the summer less cool air will escape. This will reduce how much energy is needed for cooling and heating. When the insulation is improved in an older structure it can reduce your yearly cooling and heating bill by as much as 20 percent.
The envelope, or outer shell, of your house, is the barrier that prevents the outside and inside temperatures from equalizing. Well-insulated roofs, floors, and walls will result in your cooling and heating systems having to use less energy to cool or warm the air inside your house. Since heat rises, it is very important to insulate your roof to keep warm air indoors in cold climates. Next article.
Even well-insulated walls can allow cool or warm air to escape through the gaps and cracks around doors and windows. Drafty houses need more power than tight houses to cool and heat. To save energy, use weather-stripping and caulking to prevent air leaks. It is nearly impossible in older homes to seal a house too tightly due to the construction methods, ha are used. There will be enough fresh air still for good ventilation to be maintained after the biggest leaks are sealed.
In houses that have central air-conditioning and heating units where the air is forced through the duct system, efficiency can be reduced by as much as 20 percent if there are leaking ducts. All of your home's ducts should be sealed and insulated to allow the cool and warm air to get to where it is supposed to be as efficient as possible. It is even more important to have good insulation when the ducts move through unfinished areas such as basements or attics. Learn more here. Also, seal the areas surrounding the registers in order to prevent air from leaking under the floor or behind the walls.
Although heat transfer is reduced by most insulation by blocking it physically, reflective insulation, or a radiant barrier, can be installed on your attic floor. It will reflect the heat that is radiated by a hot roof into the attic and prevent it from getting into the living area below. Although refective insulation can help to lower heating bills, the main purpose it provides is keeping your home cool in a hot climate.
A home is going to have leakage in many different areas - this will include doors, outer walls and windows - which can lead to a substantial amount of lost energy and it will be much more expensive. If you can create a literal envelope around your home, a way of ceiling in that energy, you could do so with insulation that can help lower the bills that you pay every month. According to estimates by the EPA, homeowners can save well over 14% for the cost of heating and cooling their home by using insulation in the basements, crawlspaces, and in their attic (sometimes saving about 11%). EPA guidelines on insulation.
If you want to be comfortable, you can easily find insulation that is affordable that you can use. If this is installed properly, you can save money, and have a much nicer time during the summer and winter months, allowing you to remain a constant temperatures throughout the year. If there are any leaks, you should seal these immediately, yet there are many additional benefits that you can also get access to:
In the United States, most people simply do not have enough insulation to prevent these leaks from occurring. Were you aware that 90% of all homes in the US are under insulated? When you are able to seal all of these leaks around your home, this can help you save money, improving overall energy efficiency at your house. If you can approach all of these projects successfully, your comfort will be maximized inside of your home, plus you can save around 10% on your annual utility bills. Learn more about spray foam insulation.