When considering a large investment such as renovating your home or business’s insulation, you need to make sure all your bases are covered. At NY Affordable Energy we make sure to provide a thorough inspection from attic to foundation, noting every issue that is present or could present itself in time. One common issue found in most homes that we inspect is either compromised insulation or insulation that is underperforming or simply missing completely.
Additionally, we look for any signs of air leakage where you are losing valuable heat and are losing money out of innocuous areas that could be raising your heating bill without you even knowing it. Our trained technicians will walk you through our inspection process and present you with a detailed estimate on how we can lower your energy bills and help you save money in the long run. Just to give you an idea, here are a few common issues we find when we inspect a home.
Your Fiberglass Insulation Is Underperforming
More and more data is coming forward presenting that traditional fiberglass insulation continues to underperform and is one of the most in-efficient insulators currently available to homeowners and businesses. But, don’t take our word for it, the numbers and research speak for themselves.
As you can see, while that batt of fiberglass insulation might say that it is rated at R-19, it’s real R-value is 13.7, almost a full 6 points lower than what it is being sold to you as. Additionally, even when installed perfectly the max R-value that fiberglass is able to attain is R-17, which is still 11% lower than what the company is labeling its product performance at. However, in common installations, fiberglass performs even lower than that. With most installations, fiberglass insulation only performs between R-13 to R-14, that’s a 28% loss in insulation capability.
Additionally, fiberglass insulation is often installed incorrectly This can lead to air leakage as well as compromise the insulation by allowing moisture to condense in the air pocket between the insulation and the outside walls; causing mold and other detrimental issues that may affect your home.
What is Air Leakage?
Ventilation is fresh air that enters a house in a controlled manner to exhaust excess moisture and reduce odor and stuffiness in the house. Air leakage, or infiltration, is outside air that enters a house uncontrollably through cracks and openings. It is unwise to rely on air leakage for ventilation due to there being too many variables. On cold or windy days, too much air may enter the house, and during warm or calm days, too little. Additionally, air leakage can lead to moldy, dusty crawlspace or attic air to enter which can be extremely unhealthy for those living in the home.
The recommended strategy to combat this in an old or new home is to reduce air leakage as much as possible and provide controlled ventilation as needed. Depending on the home and environmental conditions, this could be as simple as adding spot ventilation where needed or as complex as creating a whole house ventilation system which would incorporate heat recovery, moisture control, and/or air filtering.
Some of the most common areas where air leakage can occur aren’t the ones that are most visible. Although windows, doors, and outside walls contribute to air leakage, the biggest holes are usually hidden from view and connect the house to the attic, crawlspace, or basement. These could include recessed light fixtures, attic accesses, pull-down stairs, tub drain or various plumbing, HVAC, and wiring penetrations through the floor decking and bottom plates of walls.
How NY Affordable Energy Can Help
When doing home renovations there can be a lot on your plate and we want to help make sure that when it comes to lowering your heating bills that you have as little to worry about as possible. We will help provide the solutions you need to make sure that your house is as energy efficient as possible. We offer a wide range of solutions which could include upgrading your insulation to providing air sealing and moisture control. Our solutions are custom tailored to fit your specific needs and your budget.