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17 April 2013
With a tight economy, many homeowners are looking for ways to cut costs. Heating and cooling costs can be the biggest expenditures in our homes by far. With summer approaching it is still time to think about upgrading the insulation in your home. Adding insulation, along with sealing air leaks, is one of the most cost-effective energy-saving home improvements you can make to an existing home. In fact, just doing this can cut heating and cooling costs by at least 15%, often more.
According to the department of commerce, there is a basic rule of insulating that is the same for each and every home: "install insulation on any surface separating a heated space from an unheated space—attics, walls, basement walls, floors and crawl spaces".
Even if your home already has insulation in these areas, it can be very beneficial in saving on energy costs to add more insulation, especially adding attic insulation. Sealing air leaks around vents, chimneys, wires, and light fixtures should also be done when you add the additional insulation for the best results.
If you think that you are spending too much on energy costs, an energy assessment of your home can be done which should include an insulation inspection which will tell you how much insulation you have and how much more you need. The amount of insulation, which is measured in R-values, and the type of insulation that is best for your home, will vary for every home. The amount you need also depends on:
The colder weather zones like Boston and Worcester call for higher R-values. For more information on adding insulation to your existing home, contact Custom Insulation.
10 April 2013
The average home in Boston and Worcester consumes almost 49% more energy than it did in 1990. Fortunately there are lots of ways to reduce your home energy bills. By conserving energy in your home you can save money, help conserve fuel resources, and promote a cleaner environment.
With the average home using this much more electricity and combined with the costs rising yearly, it is important to look at ways to cut home heating costs.
One of the best ways to save money is to ensure that your home has the right amount of insulation. If your roof or attic is not insulated properly you can lose around 30% of the heat. Areas of heat loss in a home include: flue, roof, and ventilation, loss through walls, window and floor loss. Adding loft or attic insulation can reduce your heating bills by 20%.
Homes also lose heat through windows and walls. If double glazing is too expensive consider using film. It is also a good idea to make sure your water heater is insulated.
For more information on improving your home insulation, contact Custom Insulation.
1 April 2013
Improving home insulation could be getting overlooked in favor of wood burning stoves. While the intent behind wood stoves is for greener living, when there is poor insulation, adding a wood burning stove to our home doesn’t necessarily mean we’re living greener or making our homes more energy efficient.
There has been a large increase in wood burning stove sales over the last 2 years. Wood burning stoves are fashionable and popular right now, for good reason. The cold winters, rising energy prices and the recession that is putting a strain on wallets, along with the desire for green living have all fueled demand for wood burning stoves.
However, it could be the case that better home insulation could make homes considerably warmer and reduce the need to for a new heat source. Without the right insulation in your home, even after a wood burning stove has been installed all that extra heat will be lost.
Insulation is about having a draft free, efficient home that is warm in the winter and cool in the summer. The right insulation helps you get the most benefit out of your home heating and cooling systems while hopefully reducing your energy bills.
Wood burning stoves are a great and attractive way to heat your home. They are a greener alternative and they use biofuel, all of these features make them attractive. However, without the right insulation in your home, you will still waste money and you still won’t be warm in the winter.
For more information on home insulation in Boston or Worcester, contact Custom Insulation.
25 March 2013
In new construction, insulating your home properly saves you money on heating and cooling bills and improves the comfort of your home at the same time. You have several choices for insulation, what type you choose depends on your climate and how your home is constructed
Here are specifics on where to insulate your home in Boston and Worcester.
1. In unfinished attics, insulate between and over the floor joists to seal off living spaces below. As well as the attic access door
2. All exterior walls, including the walls between living spaces and unheated garages, or storage areas; foundation walls above ground level; foundation walls in heated basements, and full interior or exterior walls.
3. Floors above cold spaces, such as vented crawl spaces and garages. Also insulate any portion of the floor in a room that extends beyond the exterior wall below; slab floors built directly on the ground; as an alternative to floor insulation, foundation walls of unvented crawl spaces. Extend insulation into joist space to reduce air flows.
4. Band joists. An uninsulated band joist can account for a significant portion of a building's heat loss.
5. Replacement or storm windows and caulk and seal around all windows and doors.
For more information on insulation for new home construction, contact Custom Insulation.
21 March 2013
If you are building a home or adding an addition, you have plenty of choices for insulation including, spray foam, batt, cellulose and blown-in. While all types of insulation works well, many feel as though cellulose is the best choice for old and new construction. Cellulose insulation gives you the most bang for your buck.
Cellulose insulation is exceptionally green-friendly, made from recycled newspapers. This makes it economical option. But besides being economical and organic, recycled cellulose insulation out performs fiberglass insulation and is less expensive than spray-foam. Builders have been looking for a better solution to fiberglass insulation and cellulose is it. Why? Because when using cellulose insulation, the entire building envelope of your home is sealed.
Cellulose is cheaper than spray foam and is more effective than fiberglass insulation. Dense packed cellulose has an R-Value of 4.0 per inch and wicks moisture better than any other insulation. For air infiltration and sound control, cellulose insulation is a better choice than fiberglass or spray foam.
For more information on wet spray cellulose insulation for your new construction or remodeling project in Worcester, contact Custom Insulation.
11 March 2013
In the older homes around Worcester and Boston, many people wonder where to spend home rehabilitation money. Insulation is a great place to spend money if you want to save money.
The best place for insulation is in the attic floor, not in the walls. Also, if there's a drop stair or a door to the attic, make sure it's insulated and sealed too.
Once that's done, the attic should be properly ventilated. Insulation lets the attic stay near the outside temperature in the wintertime. The ventilation and insulation let the attic space stay near the outside temperature of the summertime too.
If a historic house needs attic insulation, have a contractor put 1 to 2 inches of expanded foam sheeting down over the old floor, then put half-inch plywood flooring on it and use long screws to join the sandwich to the old attic floor. The attic itself is then separated from the building envelope.
Around the sills, between floor joists, is another place where it's essential to insulate. Batt insulation placed there with the shiny metal facing the inside of the basement also act as firebreaks, preventing a fire in the basement of an older balloon-framed house from spreading due to the chimney effect of the tall empty spaces between the studs.
For more information on adding insulation to older or historic homes, contact Custom Insulation.
5 March 2013
Building a home? If so, you can set your new home apart from the others, while also cutting down on home maintenance costs down the road. How? With copper gutters. But even better, if you are trying to make your home as “green” as possible, copper gutters do that too!
Copper gutters add a level of class and quality to your home that is a step above the rest. They have a look to them that is far beyond what aluminum gutters will provide, showcasing your home with the flare you are looking for.
Copper gutters are also low maintenance. They will last forever because they will never rust or rot; whatever the weather copper gutters can withstand it. As a result copper gutters are much easier to maintain than vinyl. Copper is one of the most resilient materials you can choose to protect your home from water.
Copper gutters are also a green product because most, if not all, of the copper used is recycled. But they also have durability and longevity with a lifespan of at least 100 years.
When you require functionality, aesthetic and performance from your gutter system, contact Custom Insulation about copper gutters.
27 February 2013
There are many ways to make your home more energy-efficient and reduce your home heating bills. Insulated homes are comfortable homes. When you home is insulated properly, the temperature remains constant throughout each room in the winter and summer months.
Loft insulation works by preventing heat from escaping through the roof. It’s relatively cheap and quick to install. The exact amount will vary according to the size of your loft, but it is usually relatively inexpensive. You will also recognize a savings on your investment very quickly.
Around 35% of heat is lost through the external walls of your home. By insulating your exterior walls, your home will heat up quicker and stay warmer for longer. The process involves drilling holes into the walls of your home and filling the space with insulation.
Usually you will have paid for the investment through energy savings in about two years.
Installing insulation foam between the joists underneath the floor will trap heat and stop cold air from rising up through the gaps. This is particularly suitable for floorboards and laminate flooring, because they allow more cold air to rise than carpeting.
For more information on insulating your home, contact Custom Insulation.
19 February 2013
It is cold, and more snow is on the way. If you are tired of paying high heating bills, or of being too cold because you have your heat turned way down to avoid high heating bills, it is time to evaluate your homes efficiency.
According to projections the heating bills will rise 20% for oil households, 15% for natural gas, 13% for propane and 5% for electricity. These are high increases that will bite into everyone’s wallet.
If you’re concerned with saving money on your home’s heating bills, your home heating practices need to come under scrutiny. An energy audit is a great place to start. Increasing or adding insulation is also a very good idea.
Attic insulation, or adding insulation to crawl spaces is the perfect way to keep heat in your home and decrease heating bills. No one wants to heat the attic or crawl space, and this is what you are doing when you don’t have enough insulation.
For more information on improving the insulation in your home, contact Custom Insulation.
12 February 2013
The weekend’s storm brought loads of snow. That snow has resulted in some very beautiful icicles hanging from homes all over Worcester. Who knew that something as pretty as icicles is actually quite telling of issues within your home.
If you have icicles hanging from the roof, then you need better attic insulation. Icicles also means that an ice dam may be forming on the roof. Ice forms when snow melts higher up on the roof then refreezes as it reaches the eave.
The snow on your roof melts as a result of heat loss. You are losing heat through your attic because of poor insulation. You need to stop the heat from you living area from entering your attic. Adding more attic insulation over the ceiling will help greatly. Additionally, you will dramatically reduce your home heating bills.
If you have icicles on your roof, contact Custom Insulation.
Insulation helps keep your house cool in the summer!