When you insulate your home, you can expect it to last a lifetime. In other words, it’s very unusual to need to replace it. However, there are certain circumstances when you may need to replace portions of it or add another layer on top of it. Learn more about these situations and how to properly inspect and care for insulation.
Top 4 Common Circumstances for Replacing Insulating Material
- Settling or Compacting
- Mold or Mildew from Water Leaks
- Material is not Thick Enough
- Outdated Insulating Material has Decayed
Settling and Compacting
Most insulating materials are designed to keep their shape for decades. However, they can still settle or press down over time. When the thickness drops, the material is no longer as strong as it once was. In this situation, you won’t need to fully replace it. Simply adding another top layer should be sufficient.
Mold and Mildew from Water Leakage
Mold and mildew can threaten the health of everyone in your household. When portions of insulating material harbor mold spores, then you should replace it. Even if the material dries out, mold spores can become airborne and travel to other wet areas of the house. If you catch it early enough, then you’ll only need to replace a small section of material, keeping your cost lower. Check your material after plumbing or roof leaks. If you sanitize the area immediately, mold and mildew won’t grow.
Older Material isn’t Thick Enough
Another circumstance where you’d need to top off your insulating material is if it’s not thick enough. Before the government set standards and recommendations, some contractors insulated with just a few inches of material. Today, the U.S. Dept. of Energy recommends certain levels of insulating material based on the area of the country in which you live. For Florida, most recommendations are between 10 to 15 inches of material in the attic. If your home heats up too fast once the sun comes out, then that’s a clear sign you need more. To be sure, you can request a technician to measure the R-value of your current material. That’s the ability of the material to resist heat.
Outdated Material has Decayed
If your home was built a few decades ago, then the insulating material could have been made from fibers that can decay. Prior to the development of more modern materials, wool and cotton were sometimes used to insulate homes. They don’t have the long lifespan of materials like fiberglass. If that’s the case, then your home may be too hot in the summer or too cold in the winter. Simply put, the material doesn’t work anymore. This is a situation where you’d need to replace it.
Preferred Air Conditioning & Mechanical, LLC
For over 20 years, Preferred Air Conditioning & Mechanical, LLC has provided heating and air conditioning services to West Palm Beach, Lake Worth FL and surrounding communities. Call us today to inquire about a quote on inspecting, installing or replacing the insulating material in your home.