With the hot summer months quickly approaching and with the price of everything steadily rising, you are probably looking for ways to save money. Choosing an efficient type of insulation for your home is a great way to save money on your monthly electric bills, but you might not know which type of insulation is the best choice for you. There are several things to keep in mind when choosing which insulation is the best option for your home or business, such as the expenses, whether it is fire retardant, or whether it can fit into the small hard-to-reach cracks and crevices. Keep reading to learn more about two of the main types of insulation used in homes today: spray foam and fiberglass insulation.

 

What is Spray Foam Insulation?

 

Spray foam is a spray-on insulation product. It helps to seal walls, floors, cracks and gaps, and ceiling cavities against air movement and helps to increase moisture control. Spray foam insulation also acts as both an insulation and an air sealant. The majority of spray foam insulation is made from polyurethane foam; this is the same material that goes into Memory Foam mattresses and other furniture. 

 

Spray foam insulation must be applied by a professional to ensure that it is properly completed. However, spray foam is significantly more efficient than that of fiberglass insulation. In extreme cold temperatures, your house does not lose heat with spray foam, whereas fiberglass insulation allows heat to escape quickly in those conditions. 

Pros and Cons of Spray Foam

 

Spray foam is a cellular plastic that creates a foam when sprayed and is considered to be a high-performance product by professionals. It insulates, acts as an air sealant, and as a moisture barrier. Just like with any form of insulation, using spray foam insulation has both advantages and disadvantages. 

Advantages: 

  • It is flexible and adheres to any surface on which it is sprayed, allowing it to fill the hard-to-reach cracks, crevices, and corners in the home. 
  • Spray foam is also resistant to mold and mildew. 
  • It stays in place over time, unlike fiberglass sheets or cellulose insulation which often settle over time. 
  • Other advantages for spray foam insulation include lower electric bills, no need for a vapor barrier to be installed, and it provides an air-tight seal to prevent heat loss. 

Disadvantages: 

  • Spray foam insulation can be quite expensive compared to other types of insulation. Because spray foam must be installed by a professional and can often use more material, the cost of using spray foam is generally two to three times the cost of other types of insulation. 
  • Spray foam insulation can sometimes shrink. This typically occurs in homes located in geographic regions where extreme temperature differences occur. 

What is Fiberglass Insulation?

 

Fiberglass insulation is a type of insulation that is composed mainly of extremely fine glass fibers. It works as an insulator by trapping air and slowing the transfer of heat. Typically, fiberglass insulation comes in a blanket form, but it is also available in loose-fill form. This type of insulation is an excellent choice for homeowners who are looking to save some money or for those who plan to complete the installation job themselves. 

The thickness of the fiberglass batts determines the resistance to heat flow, which is measured by the R-value. For walls, the R-value ranges from R11 to R19; for ceilings and attics, it can go up as high as R-30. 

 

Pros and Cons of Fiberglass

 

Advantages:

  • Fiberglass insulation is inexpensive, effective, and easy to install.
  • It is moisture resistant, which is great for homes in higher-humidity regions. Because it resists moisture, it is less prone to mold growth. 
  • You do not have to worry about insects eating the fiberglass insulation, as it is not nutritive to them. 
  • It has a reasonably long lifespan, usually lasting up to 50 years. Other insulations have a lifespan of only 10-30 years. 
  • Because fiberglass insulation is made from recycled glass, it is incredibly eco-friendly; this makes it one of the only eco-friendly insulation options. 
  • Fiberglass insulation is fire-proof. Because it is fire resistant, this type of insulation is a valuable addition to the home. 

Disadvantages: 

  • Although fiberglass insulation can be relatively easy to install by yourself, if it is not installed properly, the insulation’s performance will dramatically decrease. If there are gaps in the layers of insulation, this can allow heat to move between the insulation. 
  • When installing fiberglass insulation, you must wear protective gear because the tiny slivers can lodge in the skin and are also small enough to be inhaled. 
  • Unless the batts are sealed in plastic, you will also need a vapor barrier installed to protect the insulation from moisture. 
  • Fiberglass blankets do not seal the wall and ceiling spaces as tightly as some other insulations. 

Contact Our Office Today

At Reeves Insulation we know that insulating your home is a big investment and we want to do what we can to make your home more energy efficient! If you would like to know more information on the removal or addition of insulation in your home or schedule services, call or contact our office at 904-288-9913 today. Our team of experienced professionals is here to help you!