When building energy-efficient homes, insulation receives a lot of attention. If you choose the right insulation and apply it properly, you can save yourself a lot of money on energy bills because your home will be well-protected from the fluctuating temperatures outside. Exactly how much protection you need depends on where your home is located and the climate in that area.
Before you place insulation in a home, it's important to determine how much you need. Otherwise, you may end up wasting money on too much insulation or not purchasing enough insulation.
R-value is a term that is used to refer to the insulation's ability to resist heat travel. In cooler climates, insulation with a higher R value is recommended. In warmer climates, you can get away with using insulation with a lower R-value.
This infographic from EnergyStar can help you determine how much insulation you need based on your location. Zones 5 - 8, which includes the northern states and much of the midwest, require the most insulation with the highest R-value. The further south you go, the lower R value insulation is recommended.
Spray foam insulation offers a viable alternative to regular fiberglass insulation. It works well in almost every climate. Since it has such a high R-value, a thin layer of it may be enough to insulate homes in warmer climates. In cooler areas, such as in Zones 5 - 8, you can have a thicker spray foam layer applied for more protection from the cold.
NCFI Polyurethanes is your go-to source for spray foam materials, equipment and education when building energy-efficient homes. Contact us to learn more about the benefits of spray foam insulation or to find a qualified applicator in your area.