Your home is meant to be a safe, comfortable space you can relax in. Unfortunately, if your HVAC system is working nonstop, you have inconsistent heating and cooling from one room to the next, or your utility bill is spiking in the middle of summer, you may consider an attic insulation installation and air sealing project to help you save money and keep your home cozy year-round.
So is air sealing the attic worth it? The answer is yes, but only if you can also ensure your home has proper insulation and ventilation. Let’s look closer at the role these three elements play in improving your home’s energy efficiency.
The impact of air leakage
Air leaks occur throughout your home, and they are typically found wherever two different building materials meet. Doors and windows along any exterior wall can let outside air in if they aren’t properly sealed, but even little things like electrical outlets can cause issues.
Attic air leaks are one of the major culprits because they lead to your roof, and they can reduce your energy efficiency throughout the year. In the winter, hot air has a tendency to rise. The various fixtures that penetrate your attic floor, like lights, fans, and the attic hatch make it easy for you to literally blow money away. In the summer, the hot sun can create a scorching attic, often as hot as 140 degrees, which can make it difficult to keep your home comfortable. Has this got you wondering how to air seal attic crawl spaces?
You can attempt to find air leaks in your home. By turning off the HVAC system and using a candle or stick of incense, look for areas where the smoke or flame starts moving erratically. This is the source of a draft. The safest and smartest option is to hire a professional to perform a blower door test. This test can determine exactly how much energy loss you’re seeing from air leakage and quickly identify these areas so they can be sealed.
Air sealing your attic space can reduce your energy use anywhere between 30-50%, but you won’t see the full benefits of air sealing attic crawl spaces if your home lacks proper insulation and there isn’t enough ventilation to allow sufficient airflow.
How ventilation helps
Attic ventilation moves warm air in the summer and cold air out of your attic and reduces strain on your HVAC system. A vented attic also prevents moisture buildup caused by condensation from ruining your insulation and rotting the support beams on your roof.
There are a lot of factors that affect ventilation, including air leaks, the type of ventilation system that’s installed, and the design of your roof. The amount of insulation you have and where it’s installed can also reduce or improve the airflow. Our attic insulation team can ensure your ventilation system is working properly to avoid issues in regard to air-sealing attic spaces.
The role of insulation
Air leakage can account for some of your energy efficiency, but even once the home is well sealed, the thermal exchange can still occur through the walls, floor, and ceiling, and attic space. Insulation can prevent cold air or warm air from entering through these areas, and a professional can help you evaluate your insulation in several key areas.
Most homes rely on an HVAC duct system to deliver conditioned air throughout their home, but over time the ducts can develop leaks or get obstructed by dirt and debris, which can reduce your indoor air quality. Simply cleaning and repairing your ducts and insulating them can address around 15% of your air leakage in your home, and when you combine with addressing issues in your floors, walls, and ceiling, you can eliminate nearly half of heat loss and gain in your home.
With proper attic insulation, you can help your home’s HVAC system operate at peak efficiency. This will lower your monthly energy bill and help prevent costly maintenance issues. Insulating the crawl space can prevent cold floors in the winter and keep your pipes from freezing, as well as reduce heat from rising through the floor.
At Attic Construction, we can help you determine the best types of insulation for each space, and help you identify areas that don’t have insulation, or whether to remove existing insulation or supplement as it wears down. Additionally, we offer duct sealing services and can install a radiant barrier in your attic ceiling to prevent heat from entering your home from above. Plus, we can equip your home with pest prevention measures that can remove access points for rodents and insects.
The bottom line
Attic air sealing can be a worthwhile project if you want to have a more comfortable home and lower utility bills. However, taking on the project on your own can be daunting. The team at Attic Construction has extensive experience handling insulation and other attic services so you can enjoy the full benefits without wasting time and money on common mistakes. Our offices are open 7 days a week and we are ready and waiting to schedule your free inspection. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help seal attic bypasses in your home, whether that be through fiberglass batt, spray foam, or cellulose insulation.