You may have never needed to venture into your home's attic space, but the condition of this are is an important part of keeping your home comfortable throughout the year and especially during winter. Inadequate, poorly installed, or shifting insulation can lead to a portion of your home's heating escaping into your attic and leading to the potential for ice dams forming on your roof. It is important to know the condition of and repair any deficiencies in your attic insulation. Here are some tips to help you check and update this essential area of your home.
Complete an Inspection
If you choose to inspect your attic insulation on your own, be sure you access the attic on a cool day to prevent any heat injuries. The space in your attic can become quite hot during the higher summer temperatures, so it is best to complete your inspection during fall, winter, or early spring before it gets too hot outside. Wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, breathing protection, and gloves while you inspect inside your attic to protect your skin from any potential fiberglass insulation present in your attic.
If your attic insulation is rolled-batting style, it can become shifted over time. Make sure the insulation is compressed and set between the attic floor joists without any gaps and cracks present. Next, make sure all the ventilation duct work and electrical installation in the attic flooring is properly sealed so there are no gaps and cracks to allow heat from the living space below. Using an infrared detector or thermal heat gun can help you find any areas of escaping heat in your attic and help you determine where you need to add insulation and seal gaps.
If you are not able to complete an inspection of your attic, you can still have this area of your home inspected and updated. You can hire an insulation professional to complete the inspect, recommend, and even make the corrections and additions to your insulation.
If any of your insulation is not properly covering your attic walls and floor, you can have it updated with a cellulose spray foam or similar type of insulation. Increasing the insulation's thickness and R-value will help keep your home's interior temperature better regulated. Most new types of insulation are sprayed directly onto the areas to be installed. Once sprayed, the insulation expands to quickly cover and fill all voids and spaces, increasing the insulation's potential. Then, by adding caulk around other electrical gaps and openings or ventilation duct work, you can seal up these openings as well.
Use these tips and talk to an insulation professional about your options and any recommendations they can make for updating your insulation.