When most people think about attic space, they usually see it as an extra place to store holiday lights and decorations, but not much more. However, when it comes to reducing energy costs, your attic is the most important space in your home.
What Does an Attic Do?
The purpose of an attic is not just to create extra space for dusty boxes and creepy spiders. The first and most important function of an attic is to properly distribute the weight of your roof. The angle of the roof should be designed to work as a run-off for water in inclement weather and should also work to provide a protective barrier for the rest of your home below.
Ignoring this important space can lead to big problems, such as water damage, roof replacement, unhealthy indoor air and increased energy costs. Water can build up in the rafters and roof, creating damage which can aid in mildew and mold growth, ultimately causing health problems for you and your family – not to mention costly repairs.
A properly configured attic space that has been properly sealed to prevent moisture from penetrating your home will help to lower the chance of developing serious problems, while reducing energy costs for heating and cooling your home. Many of the upgrades now available to help homeowners create a proper moisture and air barrier, as well as attic insulation, often pay for themselves rather quickly, due to lower energy bills and other savings.
How to Create an Ideal Attic
A proper attic needs three things to function effectively and efficiently. Attic insulation is vital to maintaining temperature control in your home year round, keeping things warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Proper ventilation and circulation are important for reducing moisture, which can lead to mold and mildew. Proper utilization of the attic space is also essential, so what you choose to store in there can make a difference.
- Attic Insulation – Heat naturally rises. In the winter, the heat that you use to warm your home will spread to your attic space, through what is known in the heating industry as thermal flow. The use of attic insulation helps to create a resistance to this thermal flow and is measured with an industry standard known as “R-value.” The higher the “R-value” for your attic insulation, the more efficient your home will be at reducing energy costs.
- Air Circulation and Venting – Air circulation is, as mentioned, an important component in reducing the amount of moisture that is in your attic space. When it comes to unhealthy conditions, repairs and damage in attics, moisture is most often the cause of these problems. An attic fan will help to increase the circulation in your attic space and improve the venting performance overall.
- How You Use It – Believe it or not, choosing to store things in your attic can actually hurt residential energy efficiency. The “R-value” of your attic insulation can be negatively impacted just by storing a few boxes and other items in your attic space. These items create “hot spots,” which can lead to an uneven distribution of temperature within the attic area. These hot spots and temperature imbalances can also lead to the development of condensation and moisture issues. You are better off storing your items at a local storage facility or keep them in a closet or basement instead.
Get a Professional Consultation
While there are a lot of videos and websites out there promising to help you improve your home’s insulation via DIY how-to guides, it is always better to go with a professional insulation installation expert. When you hire a professional, such as Richie’s Insulation, which serves customers all throughout Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut, you can expect to receive a full analysis of your attic space with suggestions on how you can improve your current attic insulation and improve residential energy efficiency.
If your goal is reducing energy costs, a professional insulation installation expert can help you reduce energy consumption, while still keeping your home toasty warm in the winter and refreshingly cool in the summer. Attic insulation is much more affordable than any other type of home insulation because it is easier to upgrade than insulation that is hiding in floors, walls and ceilings. Your insulation installation expert will give you information about improving your attic’s vapor and air barrier, as well as how to increase the “R-value” of the space.
Choose from blown-in insulation, fiberglass rolls or spray foam insulation to improve or increase “R-value” or to completely re-do your home’s attic insulation. Richie’s Insulation provides consultation and insulation installation for both new and existing residential properties. They will work to seal all of the air leaks around seams, joints and other openings, as well as the attic access from inside your home. Other possible leaks will be checked including chimneys, recessed can lights, skylights and utility penetrations that might cause air to leak through.
Call Richie’s Insulation today for a professional consultation at 508-678-4474. In addition to attic insulation to increase residential energy efficiency and reducing energy costs, Richie’s also provides insulation installation for other types of residential and commercial properties, both new and existing throughout Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Cape Cod.