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Posted June 13, 2012 by HomeOwnerOffers in Maintenance & Repairs
 
 

Insulation: Four Common Types That Can Help Boost Efficiency



A well-insulated home is an energy-efficient home, and adding insulation is a great way to reduce energy bills and help you heat and cool more effectively. A wide variety of different brands and types of insulation are available, and it’s important to choose the right tool for the right job. You can start by familiarizing yourself with four of the most common home insulation types.

  • Blanket Insulation: This might be the most recognizable type of insulation to the average homeowner. Blanket insulation is generally made of fiberglass or rock wool, and it comes either in long rolls or shorter sections called batts. Blanket insulation is designed to fit snugly between ceiling joists and wall studs. Relatively expensive and easy to install, blanket insulation is commonly used to insulate walls, ceilings and floors.
  • Loose Fill Insulation: Like blanket insulation, loose fill is usually made of fiberglass, rock wool or paper fibers. But unlike blankets, it comes not in solid pieces, but in the form of loose fibers that are blown into place using specialized equipment. Loose fill can be used to insulate entire walls, and it’s also well suited to filling odd-shaped areas, and spaces that would be difficult to reach with other types of insulation. Loose fill is more expensive than blanket insulation, but it has better resistance to heat transfer.
  • Rigid Foam Board: This type of insulation is exactly what it sounds like: hard sheets of solid insulation made of durable polystyrene or polyurethane foam. Foam board tends to cost a bit more than blankets, but it offers more insulating value per inch. Foam board is available in four- by eight-foot sheets that can be installed whole to insulate entire walls. Smaller pieces are also useful for insulating irregularly-shaped spaces.
  • Spray Foam Insulation: Available in spray cans for smaller jobs, or in large quantities that must be applied with specialized equipment, spray foam is applied in liquid form, but hardens to form a rigid barrier. Spray foam insulation is perfect for insulating small, irregular spaces and filling in gaps around vents, pipes, windows and ducts.