Attic insulation is extremely important yet one of the most ignored aspects by homeowners. Some barely know how to tell if the insulation is functional or damaged, nor the type of insulation1 that’s in their attic. This is understandable since the attic is most busy during winter and fall and when you have to bring out the thanksgiving. Halloween and Christmas decorations.
What you may not know is that damaged attic insulation costs you money. How? Well, if your home can’t retain hot or cool air, the AC system will overwork, resulting in a high energy bill.
The Most Common Causes of Damaged Attic Insulation
The attic is naturally dark and pests like rodents, bats, and bugs find it to be a warm and safe environment especially if it is not used often. Some pests will use the insulation as their nesting place while others take it a notch higher and use it for food.
A pest problem in the attic is not easily identifiable but it’s important that you change the damaged insulation and call pest control as soon as it’s identified.
Signs of pest activity include squeaks, scratching noises and movement in the attic.
Mold and mildew
Mold is a common attic insulation problem. If your attic insulation is made from cellulose and fiberglass then you should constantly watch out for mold growth.
One of the leading causes of mold and mildew growth in the attic is vent leaks causing water to get absorbed into the insulation. It’s important to note that this is a health hazard that should be addressed immediately as it compromises the air quality in your home.
Ice dams mainly occur during winter when warm air rises to the roof and melts the snow. The melted snow then flows to the edges of the roof and the gutters where it refreezes and after a while builds up.
This buildup distracts the water drainage in your roof, causing some water to seep into the attic. Ice dams are more dangerous than you might think as you not only have to fix the attic insulation, but also the roof damage they cause.
Traditional attic insulation
How old is your attic insulation? If you have been living in your home for long and still don’t have the answer then it might be time to reinstall the insulation. Over time, the attic insulation becomes worn-out, especially if traditional insulation is installed, leaving your attic prone to air movement.
This then results in high energy bulls. For traditional attic insulation, ensure that it is regularly maintained to avoid a reduction in the insulation’s R-value.
Be on the Lookout for Damaged Attic Insulation
If you aren’t sure about the state of your attic insulation, it is advisable that you go up there and check for any damages. Sometimes the attic just needs tidying up but there are other times when it requires a total overhaul. Assess the extent of the damage, and get professional attic insulation manpower.
Links to sources used
- Types of insulation- https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/weatherize/insulation/types-insulation