Fiberglass Loose Fill Insulation and Fiberglass Batt Insulation in Owen Sound
Getting a good understanding of home insulation
For residential homeowners in Owen Sound, getting a good understanding of insulation is wise. For the majority of homes, the objective of insulating should be to reduce and even eliminate “heat transfer”. It’s sometimes called “heat flow” by insulation contractors, but whatever the terminology, it’s not something that is desirable in the home. Heat transfer essentially means that warm indoor air (like heated air in winter) is escaping. In summer, warm outdoor air is coming into the house. Clearly, none of these is good – they result in energy efficiency that is mediocre, and higher-than-usual utility costs.
Insulation contractors view a residential house in terms of an “envelope". A house is built with various construction materials and each material affects “heat flow” in a different way. Even in a newly built house, the construction materials will have a positive affect or negative affect on the “envelope”. For the homeowner, it’s therefore important eliminate the areas of heat transfer. And this can basically be achieved with different insulation products. The final result with a good installation will be improved energy efficiency, significantly reduced energy consumption, and seasonal utility bills that are lower.
Whatever insulation products are chosen, and regardless of the install method, the insulation project should focus on similar goals. For one thing, air movement should be restricted. As well, moisture collection and accumulation should be prevented. And finally, R-Values should be augmented where possible. Maybe the most important is to have the insulation project handled by a professional. And although many a homeowner might be easily enticed by a DIY approach, it’s the professionals who can assure the best outcomes with product and installation – both for the short term and the long term.
Understanding the fiberglass products - batts and loose fill
In most of Canada, and in many of the northern United States, both fiberglass loose fill insulation and fiberglass batt insulation are the common products installed in attics and roof cavities. Professionally installed, these insulation products provide satisfactory R-Values and serve to enhance the overall energy efficiency in a home. Both products have an acceptable lifespan and a sustainable R-Value.
With fiberglass insulation products, professional installation is recommended. It’s the professionals who know how to install a proper “thermal blanket”. For one, fiberglass loose fill insulation must be blown into a space with consistency and uniformity. Similarly, fiberglass batt insulation must be placed with some precision to ensure product performance. Both installs require expertise for best results.
Some of the advantages of installing the fiberglass products
Fiberglass loose fill insulation and fiberglass batt insulation are safe to install in a residential home. Neither product contains any asbestos, and both are odor free and air-quality certified. Fiberglass is non-corrosive and non-combustible. For the most part, there is recycled “glass” incorporated into the product, which precludes the installation from retaining moisture in small amounts. Under proper conditions, fiberglass does not settle over time, and should remain intact as installed for many years.
Fiberglass loose fill insulation and fiberglass batt insulation do not attract rodents, animals or insects. Neither should these products provide a feeding ground for mold to flourish. And when the installation space is properly ventilated, fiberglass insulation products should not deteriorate. For homeowners considering fiberglass loose fill insulation or fiberglass batt insulation in Owen Sound, these are both cost-effective installations, with project costs that can be offset by annual savings on utilities.
Some of the disadvantages of installing the fiberglass products
When installed separately, neither fiberglass loose fill insulation nor fiberglass batt insulation can do an effective job in totally averting moisture accumulation or air movement. For installations in the attic or roof, this could be a problem. As such, it would be wise to discuss with a contractor, so that air and moisture issues can be addressed prior to any insulation work commencing.
Even when fiberglass products are professionally installed, air movement can be a problem. This is because the fiberglass products do not completely seal up a space – and again, this could be an issue in a space like the basement or attic. Since the installed space cannot be completely sealed, it would be wise to address the issue with a contractor – and prior to any insulation work.
The biggest downside with fiberglass is wetness. Wet fiberglass, whatever the reason, will eventually lose its integrity and it’s R-Value. Wet fiberglass deteriorates, and will require removal at some point. It’s work that will require expert remediation - to remove the deteriorated insulation and re-install. Clearly, preventing the fiberglass installation from getting wet would be a priority.
Wet fiberglass can also set the stage for mold to grow and spread. And a mold infestation can actually compromise the indoor air of the entire home. Here, the mold and insulation have to be removed, and re-installed. Whatever the extent of mold, this is not a healthy situation, and necessitates professional intervention. This is not something that should be handled by the uninitiated.
Another product alternative - Spray Polyurethane Foam
Due to the shortcomings of fiberglass products, Spray Polyurethane Foam has become an alternative for many home insulation projects. SPF can create an impervious “envelope” where installed, and can effectively prevent air movement and moisture collection with one installation.
For most insulation professionals, air leakage (heat loss and cool loss) is an ever-present issue. But with Spray Polyurethane Foam, the installation space is completely airtight. It’s sealed tight, with high R-Values, and the most effective air and moisture barrier – nothing comes close.
The “hybrid” installation - one of the best options
Spray Polyurethane Foam is recognized as the best insulation product on the market. One application does it all, and the long-term benefits are hard to match. As a result, many more contractors are doing the install and routinely recommending the install for residential homeowners.
As it is, Spray Polyurethane Foam is not a good fit for all project budgets. Because of the cost, Great Northern Insulation has developed a unique approach - the “hybrid” install. This is a custom install that incorporates a fibreglass product with an SPF product in one application.
The “hybrid” install ensures excellent results whether in the attic, the roof cavity, or the basement. The Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) provides an excellent seal and insulation, and the fibreglass provides added insulation and excellent cost-effectiveness for a homeowner’s budget.