Installing insulation in the home will raise energy efficiency, lowering energy bills. It will suppress
noise and increase privacy if installed in interior walls.
The Many Benefits of Thermal Insulation
There are many benefits to installing insulation in a home. The thermal benefit is the primary one;
insulation repels heat in the summertime and keeps the cold at bay during the winter. Where is it most
First, attic insulation because this is where the sun has the greatest impact, and secondly inside
the exterior walls. It is only logical to install wall insulation as one of the ways to save energy and money
but its best done during initial residential construction.
Proper insulation also saves on energy costs and
reduces utility bills by keeping the home heating
Added Privacy from Noise Suppression
Another benefit of insulation is noise suppression. Sound waves penetrate a wall, travel through the
interior of the wall, and then pass through the opposing side. This compromises privacy and disturbs
If insulation is added, it will absorb much of the sound. Interior walls are where insulation is used
for this purpose.
Insulation Offers a High Return on Investment
Insulation is cheap when compared to the money it will save. And installing insulation is an easy
project. The most common insulation in residential applications is composed of spun fiberglass.
It usually comes with paper on one side but can be purchased without the paper.
Why the paper? When placed between wall studs, the paper that extends past the sides is stapled
to the wood studs. This way the insulation keeps its position and wont sag over the course of time,
which reduces its benefits.
The paper also reduces the installers contact with fiberglass fibers. For most applications,
insulation in roll form is better than fixed-length bats.
Other Types of Insulating Materials
Long ago, asbestos was used for many insulating applications. Not so anymore; in fact it has
created a new industry: asbestos abatement. This is a concern when removing popcorn ceilings.
Other materials you might encounter are various types of reflective insulation (radiant barrier
products kind of fall in this category), blown cellulose, Styrofoam, rockwool (really nasty),
polyurethane, and mineral wool.
Always Wear Protective Gear when Installing Insulation
You will need:
A pair of goggles
A respirator or dust mask
Long sleeve shirt
And the following tools:
Heavy duty stapler
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Insulation Installation inside Walls
If at all possible, exterior wall insulation should be installed during the construction phase, before any
sheetrock has been installed on the inside of the exterior walls (but the exterior should be dried in).
For interior walls, install it before any sheetrock has been hung or after one side has been hung.
In any case, wait until after all plumbing and electrical work in the wall cavity has been completed.
Installation is a breeze; begin anywhere that's convenient. Place the insulation between the studs
with the paper side towards you, the insulation installer. Start stapling the paper to the studs beginning
at the top and work down. At the bottom simply cut off the roll. Plumbing and electrical outlets will
necessitate working with chunks of insulation.
In an attic there won't be much stapling due to the fact that most surfaces are horizontal. Just roll
the insulation out over the rafters and cut it off. Leave the exposed fiberglass side facing up and the
paper down. Begin close to the roof's edge and work inward.