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Why Insulation and Air Sealing Go Hand-in-Hand

Why Insulation and Air Sealing Go Hand-in-Hand

When you hire a contractor to insulate your home, you can also discuss air sealing. Having both services completed at once can save you time and money while giving you better protection against exterior temperatures and weather conditions. 

Most people assume these services are the same, but there are differences in how they protect your home.

How Do Insulation and Air Sealing Differ?

Most contractors will perform insulating and air sealing services, and it makes sense to request these services together. While they are not the same services, they work well together to help you protect your home and use less energy.

Insulation

The use of insulation is primarily beneficial in protecting the temperature in your home. Its R-value determines how well insulation regulates the flow of heat. While insulation may help keep some air from passing into or out of your home, this isn’t its intended function. 

The R-value or regulation of heat flow is different for each type of insulation. For this reason, you should talk to your insulation contractors about the best type for your home.

Here is a list of the common types of insulation used in residential homes:

  • Spray foam
  • Blown-in
  • Blanket batts and rolls
  • Foam board

Your contractor can explain the different levels of protection each type offers.

Air Sealing

When you request air sealing services, you’ll be asking your contractor to identify holes, crevices, or other areas in your home’s structure that allow air to pass through the walls. Typically, these leaks are found around door and window frames, in the attic, or where plumbing pipes enter the home. 

Once leaks are discovered, the contractor will use a variety of materials to cover and seal the leaks. This prevents outside air from entering the home and keeps treated air from escaping. Once air sealing services are complete, you’ll use less energy to maintain the same comfort level in your home.

Contractors commonly use the following materials to seal air leaks:

  • Caulk
  • Plywood
  • House wrapping
  • Polyethylene

The materials used to seal air leaks will depend on the type and size of the leak. A contractor will use multiple materials to ensure the leak has been completely sealed in some cases.

The Benefits of Insulating and Air Sealing at Once

When your contractor can perform air sealing services and insulating services, he can do both tasks more efficiently. He won’t have to remove insulation to seal holes or crevices, only to replace the insulation afterward.

In requesting both services together, you’ll enjoy the following benefits almost immediately:

  • Consistent temperature control
  • An HVAC system that works more efficiently
  • Soundproofing will reduce exterior background noise
  • Lower energy bills

Your home will also have a reduced impact on the local environment. Since you’ll be using less energy, you can trust that you’ll be living as eco-friendly as possible. You’ll also be reducing your reliance on limited resources.

What Parts of Your Home Need Air Sealing with Insulation?

There are several areas in your home that can benefit from these services. This includes older window and door frames that may be loose or might have rotted wood. 

The attic is another common area that requires these services. By sealing air leaks in your attic before insulating, your contractor will also lower your risk for water leaks.

Air ducts should also be checked for leaks. Sealing and insulating ducts will ensure treated air will go to the intended living spaces in your home rather than leaking out. 

For similar reasons, any crawl spaces in your home should also be sealed and insulated. Air can leak out through loose or damaged materials, forcing you to rely more heavily on your HVAC system.

A professional contractor should always perform your insulation and air sealing services. A trained and skilled technician will give you better results than if you tried to do the work yourself. Consider professional insulation and air sealing services to protect your home and keep energy waste at a minimum.


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