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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What does R-value mean?

R-value measures insulation's resistance to heat flow. It can also be referred to as "thermal resistance." The higher the R-value, the greater the insulating power. The R-value of different insulating materials must be based on test methods established by the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM).

2. How much will I save by adding insulation to the walls, ceilings, and floors of my home?

Unless your home was constructed with special attention to energy efficiency, adding insulation will probably reduce your utility bills. The amount of energy you conserve will depend on several factors: your local climate; the size, shape, and construction of your house; the living habits of your family; the type and efficiency of the heating and cooling systems; and the fuel you use. Energy conserved is money saved, and the annual savings increase when utility rates go up. Insulation upgrades also add to the value of your home.

3. How much insulation should my house have?

The U.S. Department of Energy recommends home insulation R-values based on where you live. Be sure your new home complies with current building code requirements for insulation. These building codes establish minimum levels of insulation for ceilings, walls, floors, and basements for new residential construction.

4. What must new home sellers tell new home buyers?

Every new home seller must put specific information about insulation in every home sales contract. Local and state governments may have additional rules and regulations governing consumer contracts.

5. Why hire a professional insulation contractor rather than a home improvement contractor or general contractor?

Proper installation is essential for insulation to perform properly. Knowledge of vapor retarders, air infiltration, ventilation, recessed lighting, and water pipes are just a few of the areas critical to installation techniques. Professional insulation contractors have access to a wide variety of training, are familiar with local codes and regulations, and can offer guidance about the type and amount of insulation to be used.

6. Can insulation help reduce unwanted sound?

Yes. Insulation is an efficient way to reduce unwanted sound, and it is commonly used to provide a more comfortable and quieter interior environment. Insulation effectively reduces noise transmission through floors and through interior and exterior walls. A professional insulation contractor can help you select the proper insulation for your needs.

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