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Why it is Important to Remove Old Insulation

June 24, 2016

There's no hard and fast rule about removing old insulation. And while one contractor may opt not to remove, another may insist on starting the re-insulation from a completely clean space. But there are situations where removal is absolutely necessary - like water damage, fire damage, or rodent infestation. These are situations where the insulation is probably quite compromised, and the space is likely contaminated in some way. There would no question about complete removal. For the most part, homes usually have some existing insulation, for example in the attic. Although it's possible to retain old insulation as a base when re-insulating, it's important to have the space professionally assessed to determine the overall condition. Importantly, it's essential to assess if there is any asbestos or similar product that could be hazardous. Here, a professional assessment is highly recommended - this is not the right time to be saving project dollars by cutting corners. Another reason for professional assessment is to identify weak points where new insulation will improve energy efficiency and insulation performance. This is where a home energy expert will be able to ascertain how much R-Value may be required when re-installing new insulation, or if there's a need for an air barrier or vapour barrier. Finally, there's the issue of ventilation, and this is especially relevant in the attic because proper ventilation will allow the insulation to perform. Good insulation contractors provide recommendations that satisfy client need. Where insulation removal is necessitated, it will be proposed - where the situation is not critical, another option will be introduced. For Great Northern Insulation, it's customer need that is at the forefront. GNI experts carefully assess the need for insulation removal; they accurately estimate the amount of work required; and finally, they recommend workable options for new insulation to be installed. GNI also discourages homeowners from taking the DIY path with insulation removal. It's not only time-consuming and labour-intensive - it could be hazardous, and could pose serious health risks. Deteriorating insulation could be full of animal remains, mold and mildew deposits, and various leftovers from previous years. Its work that requires specialized equipment and the professional experience that most amateur homeowners don't have. Above all, the risks aren't worth taking. Properly approached, insulation removal is only step one in a process. Definitely, a complete and thorough clean up is critical. But it's also important to plan out potential repairs, choose a good insulation product for replacement, and ensure that ventilation is adequate. The experts at GNI strive to seal a space airtight, particularly in the attic and roof cavity. In fact, it's just as important as the insulation - it assures moisture control and R-Value performance for many years to come. When it comes time to choose and install new insulation, Great Northern Insulation consistently recommends Spray Polyurethane Foam. Industry wide, it's considered the best product, mainly because it does more with one application than anything comparable. Professionally installed, SFI makes a space airtight, creates a combination air and vapour barrier, and provides high R-Values.

Western Ontario

935 Keyes Drive
Woodstock, Ontario
Canada N4V 1C3

Phone: 1-800-265-1914

Fax: (519) 539-7946
TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

Muskoka, Haliburton, Northern Ontario

1027 Elwell Park Road
Gravenhurst, Ontario
Canada P1P 1R1

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

Central Ontario

29 Ferndale Industrial Drive
Barrie, Ontario
Canada L4N 9V5

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

Greater Toronto Area

2 Guided Court
Etobicoke, ON
M9V 4K6

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

GTA East

103 North Port Road
Port Perry, Ontario
Canada L9L 1B2

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

South Central Ontario

450 Industrial Dr,
Toronto (Milton), Ontario
Canada L9T 5A6

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

Eastern Ontario

1035 Moodie Dr #1,
Nepean, ON
K2R 1H4

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914

Niagara Region

25 Lincoln Ave
St. Catharines, ON
L2P 2C7

TOLL FREE: 1-800-265-1914


Great Northern Insulation - Better Business Bureau Profile.

Homestars Best of 2021 Award

Best of 2021

HomeStars has ranked Great Northern Insulation as a company that goes above and beyond in every aspect of business for the year of 2021.

Homestars Best of 2022 Award

Best of 2022

HomeStars has ranked Great Northern Insulation as a company that goes above and beyond in every aspect of business for the year of 2022.


GNI is the Authorized & Trusted Insulation and Air Sealing Installer for Lowe’s

Trusted for Over 40 Years

Over 40 Years in Business

At GNI, we service your project with the most experienced staff in the industry. Ongoing professional development is an obsession at GNI and we will not compromise at any level to bring to our customers the very best Installers, Sales Representatives, Customer Care Personnel, Field Superintendents, Estimating and Technical Support to your project.

100% Canadian

100% Canadian

Great Northern Insulation is recognized as Canada's largest full-service insulation contractor. GNI is 100% Canadian owned, proudly serving Ontario customers since 1980.

Foam Masters

Do it right the first time
- with foam mastersTM

January, 2021 regulatory phaseout of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) with the introduction of WALLTITE CM01. Using hydrofluorolefins (HFOs) with lower global warming potential (GWP) compared to HFCs, WALLTITE CM01 is the next generation of spray foam insulation.



Heatlok® Soya HFOTM leverages Honeywell’s latest Solstice® Liquid Blowing Agent technology. This new hydrofluoroolefin (HFO) blowing agent is the most environmentally conscious blowing agent produced to date, with a zero ozone depletion potential (ODP) and a global warming potential (GWP) of 1, which is more than two orders of magnitude (99.9%) lower than HFCs used in this industry.


3MTM products.
Quality + Performance = Savings

3MTM energy-saving products are designed to keep warm air in, and cold air out, while keeping energy bills down. Products optimize energy efficiency in buildings and homes; improve indoor environment for occupants; and effect the reduction of seasonal energy costs. 3M products are authorized for LEED credits (Leadership in Energy/Environmental Design).

Holmes and Holmes

Holmes and Holmes


Mike Holmes and his son Mike Jr. (MJ) convert MJ’s bachelor bungalow into a two-storey home for MJ and his girlfriend Lisa. Choosing the newest materials and build techniques, the father and son team follow Mike’s famous motto – “Make it right.” The show can be watched on HGTV and DIY Network.


Enbridge Incentives

The Home Efficiency Rebate Plus program offers up to $10,000 in home reno rebates – and Great Northern Insulation can pave the way.


Great Northern Insulation proudly abides by a renovation-specific Code of Conduct set by RenoMark™.


We are Verified & Bonded by eRenovate. When you choose to proceed with our services through their platform, you receive the gaurantees set forth through their program.

As Seen on Love It or List It

The GNI crew have been featured installing insulation on Love It or List It - have you seen our logo in an episode?

Climatizer Cellulose


CLIMATIZER PLUS cellulose insulation is manufactured from a minimum of 85% locally-sourced post-consumer recycled newsprint. Non-toxic additives are applied to the uniquely fiberized paper generating a building material with superior thermal and acoustic properties, as well as exceptional resistance to fire, moisture, mould and pests.

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