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Home Insulation: What's The Best Material To Use?

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Investing in home insulation is always sure to pay off in the long run. A huge portion of the money Americans spend on energy goes towards heating and cooling their homes. The poor insulation materials and methods used in many homes is one of the reasons why Americans are forced to spend as much as they do. However, you can keep the costs of insulating your home quite low if you start by choosing better materials for the job. Which materials should you be discussing with your home insulation contractor?


As far as insulating materials go, fiberglass offers one of the most cost-effective options you can choose. Fiberglass can be blown in or it can come in the form of a blanket which is usually sold in batts and rolls. Fiberglass is not flammable since it's made from glass and sand. It also doesn't retain moisture. Once it dries out, it's R-value will be back to its initial level. Fiberglass is often used to insulate floors, roofs, pipes, walls, and air ducts around the home. It is one of the most commonly used options in the US.

Mineral Wool

This type of insulation actually refers to any one of a number of insulation materials. It can refer to glass wool which is made from recycled glass. It can also refer to rock wool or slag wool which are made from basalt and steel mill slag respectively. Mineral wool is an effective way of insulating very large areas if it's used together with other types of insulation that are more fire resistant.

Spray Polyurethane Foam

Spray polyurethane foam is a foam plastic that comes in liquid form. It's sprayed in the area that requires insulation, and it can expand taking up the whole space. This type of insulation can be used to provide moisture control, and it can also act as an air barrier. The R-values associated with spray polyurethane foam are also quite high, and it is fire resistant, too. 

Reflective Insulation and Radiant Barriers

These two types of insulation materials operate in a similar manner. A reflective surface is installed to face an open space such as an attic. The barrier works by preventing the heat from the roof reaching the attic floor. The reflective insulation is similar to the radiant barrier except it's backed with another material such as a plastic film, Kraft paper, polyethylene bubbles, or cardboard. If properly installed, this material can be very cost-effective in the long run.

Picking insulation can be a big task. Visit sites like to learn more.