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Attic Insulation

 

attic - illustration 2

Many homes have inadequate attic insulation or even worse, none at all.  Most existing homes are insulated with fiberglass insulation that is doing such a poor job that homeowners think the AC is broken.

 

Loose fill, blown in insulation stops the movement of heat from radiating into your home from the roof.  Properly insulating and air sealing your home is one of the quickest, easiest, most cost effective steps you can take to immediately reduce your heating and cooling bills and help preserve the environment.

 

Cellulose insulation, usually made with recycled newspaper using grinding and dust removing machines and adding a fire retardant, forms a seamless blanket of natural fibers that provide outstanding protection from the elements.  Best of all, on the hottest and coldest days, when you need it most, cellulose insulation won't lose R-value like fiberglass.

 

Eco-friendly products, such as Celbar, are healthier alternatives to fiberglass.  Celbar is a blend of specially prepared cellulose fibers, organic in nature, treated with adhesive and fire resistant chemicals. When sprayed in place, the interlocking fibers result in a mass that produces excellent sound and thermal properties.  Celbar effectively reduces sound and heat transfer by creating dead air spaces between and within its fibers. This process seals cracks and holes in the wallboard, around plumbing and electrical outlets, vent ducts and other irregularities.  There are no compressed areas or voids to allow sound leaks, R-value reduction, or air infiltration.  

attic - with insulation and cat walk attic - insulation with baffles attic - spray insulation

Long ago there were several insulation materials available: Rockwool, Vermiculite, Fiberglass, Cellulose and Mineral-Wool.  Over the years we've found all of these, except Cellulose, to be dangerous, ineffective or impractical.  Today there are basically two choices: Fiberglass and Cellulose. The confusing thing is that Fiberglass is available in two forms: rolled batting or blown, and Cellulose is only available as a blown material.  The following is a comparison between the two:

Cellulose

 

Life-time guarantee

Non-toxic, safe

No itching

Rodent resistant

Insect resistant

Mold/mildew resistant

8.1" to attain an R30

Soundproofing

Soft material

Non-flammable

Bland grey color

Require 26% less energy to heat home

Fiberglass

 

No Guarantee

Hazard-warning label

Very itchy & irritating

Rodents nest in it

No resistance to insects

No resistance to mold/mildew

Requires almost 12" for R30

Minimal soundproofing

Rigid glass fibers

Merely melts in a fire

Vibrant pink yellow or white color

attic -finished insulation

Loose fill, blown in Cellulose - the green and healthy way to insulate

We recommend Cellulose as the green, non-toxic, mold-resistent and healthy way to insulate, with a life-time guarantee!

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Wall Insulation

Insulating the exterior walls of your home helps increase comfort and reduce energy cost.  Missing insulation above a patio door will let heating dollars escape from your house.

These pictures above are of the same exterior patio door wall.  However, the picture above to the right was taken with a state-of-the-art Infrared Camera. The purple color is the cold air leaking into the home because the exterior wall lacks insulation, causing an uncomfortable draft in this particular room.  Imagine how much cold air leaks in during the winter, especially at night?  or in the summer when the hot air leaks into the house?

 

More importantly, moisture condenses on the coldest surfaces of your home causing a health hazard – mold.  Eliminating these hazards from your home is a top priority.  Insulating these exterior walls with insulation will help create a much healthier and more comfotable environment.

 

The three pictures to the right, also taken with an Infrared Camera, show heat leaving and escaping from the exterior walls of these homes.  In the top picture of the three, notice the heat entering the room because half of the wall doesn't have insulation, depicted as the hot yellow color - the purple color is cool.  The insulation most likely fell down over time from gravity and created empty space where it used to be, acting like a window letting the heat in.  In the middle picture of the three, notice again the lack of insulation in the wall between window bays - the yellow portion is the hot air leaving the home, since this picture was taken from the outside - money is literally leaving through the wall.  In the bottom picture of the three, can you imagine sitting in this room in the winter or at night and feeling the cold air radiating from within the walls from the outside making you feel cold?  This might be a similar room in your house where you read your favorite journal at night and feel that "cold draft".  Well if you have a throw blanket on your couch next to the lamp, you're not alone.  Chances are the culprit letting in the cold air is one of these three: the walls don't have proper insulation, the bat insulation fell down over time or someone simply forgot to install it the first time around.

 

We can work together to fix this situation and save you hundreds per month on your energy bill.  We can install blown in, high density cellulose insulation, which also acts as an air sealer, from manufacturers with a solid reputation for top quality, environmentally friendly, long-lasting performance and responsive warranty service.  

 

Cellulose insulation, which is made with recycled newspaper using grinding and dust removing machines and adding a fire retardant, can increase a wall's fire resistance by 22-55%, is non-toxic and guaranteed for the life of your house.  Cellulose insulation has a Noise Reduction Coefficient of 0.90 (90% of sound energy absorbed).  It's so effective at limiting outside noise, it's approved by the Federal Aviation Administration as an enhanced sound control material for homes located in the flight paths of our nation's airports!

Ceiling - without IR big Ceiling - IR big exterior wall - infrared 3 exterior-wall---infrared-2 exterior wall - infrared 1

Real World Application of Blown-In Attic Insulation R-60

Jeff and Tim "the Tool Time" Spicka, insulated the attic floor or this 2,200 sq. ft. home in Sherman Oaks, CA in July, 2013.  The homeowners were complaining of cool drafts in the winter and hot flashes in each room during the summer.  After conducting a thorough energy audit, Jeff found that the attic needed help.  We changed out all the flourescent lights fixtures to LED with new fixtures, so we could blow in the insulation over the cans, which was oen of the biggest problems in this case.  Most can lights do NOT have insulation above them, so the house had "hot and cold spots where the can lights were - it's like having a Dutch oven on the ceiling because the hot attic conducts heat into rooms in the summer and cold air in the winter.  We also air sealed the ceiling penetrations and top plates, creating a nice thermal air barrier between the conditioned space and the attic.  

 

The Result:

  • R -60 attic insulation,

  • air sealed attic floor,

  • Increased comfort,

  • No more cold or hot spots,

  • more vibrant colors illuminated from LED's, and

  • a dramatic reduction in energy cost every month.

 

The homeowners recently reported that there are no more temperature swings.  They were extatic to say, "Our home is cozy now and perfect for entertaining guests on a cold winter night.  And with the LED lights, the colors on all of our paintings are more vibrant and alive!"