A Cooler House offers a comprehensive list of Insulation Services in the Dallas Fort Worth area. We install Fiberglass, Foam, and Cellulose insulation to cater to each customers needs.
Why Insulate my Attic?
Insulation is the most important component of your "Heat Defense System"; it is your Thermal Barrier. The thermal barrier of your home is:
- Your perimeter walls and/or
- Above your ceiling or directly below your roof decking.
Most homes in the DFW area are insulated at the ceiling or more accurately said at the attic floor. The Department of Energy recommends installing a R49 (or around 17" of fiberglass insulation) in this situation. That's a lot of insulation; why so much? The reason is that attics in the DFW area can reach temperatures of over 150 degrees for much of the year and a R49 is the amount of insulation need to stop that intense heat, without a Radiant Barrier that is.
There are a couple of things that can help to alleviate the attic heat and lessen the "R Value" needed to insulate your home.
- One is a Radiant Barrier; this can be both sprayed on or rolled out aluminum attached to the rafters.
- The second is mechanical ventilation; these can be either solar or straight electrical.
With a radiant barrier and mechanical ventilation one could get away with as little as a R30 in the attic.
There is another option, and the one I like the best, that is moving the "Thermal Barrier" from the attic floor to the attic ceiling or the underside of the roof by spraying Foam Insulation (fiberglass can also be blown in behind netting between the rafters). What are the benefits of foaming your attic?
- Stopping the heat at the roof eliminates the heat and humidity from building or compounding in the attic. If properly done a foamed attic will stay cooler than the outside temp.
- Most homes in DFW have the HVAC system stored in the attic. The cooler you can keep your Air conditioner the more efficiently the system will run. A study done by Texas A&M shows that just the HVAC efficiency gained from foaming your attic could save hundreds of dollars per year.
- While ceiling insulation does stop the heat from getting through to your house... it accomplishes this by "trapping" the heat acting as thermal (heat) storage battery. It takes hours after the attic has cooled for the "ceiling" insulation to dissipate it's stored heat, meaning you have to run your ac longer in the evening. The greater the R-value the longer it takes to dissipate the stored heat.
- In many cases by foaming your attic you make that space a great storage area that you can actually tolerate.
- Indoor air quality; sealing the attic stops allergens, dirt, and dust from being drawn into your home.
Not every home is the same so an Energy Audit is always a good first step.
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