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How Does Home Insulation Work?

Heating and cooling accounts for about 50 to 70% of the energy consumption in a typical American home – a huge piece of the pie, if you ask most experts. However, with adequate home insulation, heating and cooling bills can be slashed greatly.

Home insulation works by using resistant or absorptive materials that retard or prevent the passage of heat, cold, or sound (the first two being the most common reasons). It basically makes any home warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. Read more of this post

Battening the Hatches in the Basement

Current homebuilding trends require that a basement be part of the floor plans for all practical purposes, such as storage and being the main center for your home systems. However, the place does account for much heat loss, especially if it has passageways leading into the home or outside. While basements are cool and damp by nature, you can’t really count on it if you want the place to be safe for temperature-sensitive objects, hence the need to tap a professional to do the insulation for you.

Your preferred contractor will usually recommend setting up the insulation from within the basement if the house has long been finished. They will figure out the proper insulation values for the basement, depending on the furnace’s power source. For places like Texas, interior insulation is at R11, while the exterior insulation value is at R10 for electric furnaces and R4 for heat pump, fuel oil, and gas-powered furnaces.

Attaching the insulation to the basement wall is tedious. Your contractor’s crew will first set up polystyrene sheets to shield the main insulation frame against moisture. The materials for filling the insulation frame include batts, spray-on, or loose-fill insulation, which requires installing drywall as backing.

Signs That Your Refrigerator Needs Help

The refrigerator is arguably the most important appliance in existence in the kitchen. It is due to its invention that the idea of storing perishable goods for a considerable amount of time has become more convenient and practical.

However, refrigerators will eventually wear down and cease to function properly. Like any other appliances, refrigerators will not last for a long time if they are not taken care of and are not fixed immediately if these signs show up.

Uncertain Temperatures

Cold temperatures are the defining features of refrigerators, so a refrigerator that freezes food or ineffectively chills the food that you are storing in it should raise some concerns. It is possible that the thermostat and/or the compressor motor are to blame.

Noises

While refrigerators are supposed to make a soft humming noise during the refrigeration process, it should make banging noises when its doors are shut. This problem can be attributed to poor condenser mounting. It is important that you have a professional check out the refrigerator to assess its condition.

High Energy Bills

If the refrigerator is using too much energy just to keep the food chilled, then you can be certain that there is something off with your refrigerator. It can vary from worn down parts to a poor sealing system.

Different Types of Insulation

Families in Houston understand the importance of heat insulation in their homes. The latest winter the city experienced, which brought cold temperatures and snow to different areas in Texas, has brought the importance of proper insulation back to center stage.

There are different insulation options available for households to choose from. Each one has their own benefits, but all promise better insulation for living conditions that are more comfortable. Here are some of them:

Batt and roll insulation

Batt insulation is large pieces of insulation made out of various materials. Two of the most common materials utilized for batt insulation are cotton and fiberglass. This kind of insulation is an easy DIY project, but it can become ineffective if there are gaps in the attic that weren’t expertly handled by a DIY homeowner.

Blown-in insulation

This type of insulation is the polar opposite of batt insulation as it comes smaller pieces. Blown-in insulation is most effective in covering hard-to-insulate spots in the attic, as the installer blasts the insulating material (fiberglass or cellulose) from a huge hose into the attic or other space.

Spray foam insulation

Spray foam insulation stands out from the two types as the installer can effectively move the building envelope from the attic floor to the roofline. This type of insulation works best with homes that have HVAC systems and ducts installed in the attic.

Home Insulation Guide: DIY or Hire a Professional?

Under-insulated homes are prone to hefty heating and cooling costs while properly insulated homes are more energy-efficient, comfortable, and cost-effective. This is why more and more homeowners strive to improve or install proper insulation systems; particularly now that energy costs keep on increasing. Read more of this post

Trap Heat with Protective Attic Insulation

Homes can potentially get even hotter than the outdoors during summer by containing sweltering temperatures. Heat can permeate the building (usually through the roof) and find its way inside, leaving the interior muggy and uncomfortably warm. Homeowners might be tempted to leave their air conditioning on in order to combat the heat, though this option could lead to higher energy consumption.

The better alternative to resolve this heat problem would be to install proper insulation. Adequate insulation can keep power costs down in the long run. Some skeptical householders might find insulation counterintuitive, since the material is designed to trap and prevent heat from leaving a home. However, insulation can be installed such that it can also turn away outdoor heat from entering a house.

The attic is the perfect place to install protective insulation, since the structure is often exposed to the scorching rays of the sun. An insulation material with an R-value of R-38 will be needed, since homes that experience a lot of warm weather won’t need much of the material to keep the heat indoors. If properly installed, the insulation should keep the heat trapped inside the attic, preventing it from going any further into the house.

Go Green, Save Money

According to the United Nation’s estimates, the world population will grow to 10 billion people by 2060. If people today are concerned about the rapidly dwindling energy sources, this 40% increase in population will put an even greater strain on the world’s finite fuel supply. Some sources peg that oil reserves will be depleted within 46 years, while natural gas and coal will be used up by 2072 and 2128, respectively.

In response to this, the government has laid out programs like the Energy Star initiative to make the country more energy efficient. If you’ve shopped around for a new refrigerator or dishwasher, you’ve probably noticed the Energy Star logo. Only products that exhibit superior energy efficiency bear this seal, which helps consumers buy ecologically friendly appliances.

Aside from this, the Obama administration is also rewarding people for making their homes more energy efficient. For example, if you add insulation to your Houston home before the year ends, you may qualify for a 10% tax credit on the cost of materials up to $500. Since insulation prevents heat transfer, you’ll benefit from lower heating and cooling costs while helping the country conserve energy.

Since households are one of the biggest consumers of energy in the country, conservation should begin at home. Its rewards go beyond energy savings—it ensures a sustainable future for the next generation.