Advantages and Disadvantages of Common Types of Insulation

man attaching insulation to wallInsulation is an important component in your home and workplace. It not only keeps the air at a comfortable and consistent temperature, but good insulation will help to keep your energy bills low.

As you’re making decisions about what type of insulation you should put in your residence or place of work, consider these advantages, disadvantages and installation information:

Types of Insulation Materials

  • Fiberglass
    • Advantage: Most common, non-flammable and resistant to moisture damage.
    • Disadvantage: Can be highly irritating to your skin and lungs if you come in direct contact with it.
    • Installation: Fairly simple and you can do it yourself. Typically, fiberglass comes in batts, blankets and loose fill that you can fit in between studs and beams.

  • Cellulose
    • Advantage: Environmentally friendly, as it is made from organic recycled paper and cardboard.
    • Disadvantage: While it is treated to be resistant to moisture and pests, it’s insulating ability decreases significantly when it absorbs moisture. As a result, cellulose insulation needs to be replaced about every 5 years.
    • Installation: Installed by blowing into place or pouring it into the desired location. Makes it easier to fill oddly shaped areas.

  • Rock Wool (Also called mineral wool)
    • Advantage: Fire resistant since it is able to withstand extremely high temperatures, as well as noise resistant. Comparable to fiberglass.
    • Disadvantage: Rock wool is more expensive and not as common as other insulating materials.
    • Installation: Installed as sheets into walls.

  • Spray Foam
    • Advantage: Good for enclosing and insulating existing walls, abnormally shaped areas, or working around obstructions.
    • Disadvantage: Spray foam isn’t very thick and contracts with age, pulling away from framing.
    • Installation: Small quantities come in spray containers, but if you need large quantities, you may have to purchase a pressurized sprayer.

Insulation isn’t the only way to save on your energy costs! Having the right air conditioning system for your home or workplace is a must.

Check out our blog and knowledge center for more information. If you’re in the metro Atlanta area, contact an HVAC professional who can come meet your residential and commercial HVAC needs.