Insulation plays a critical role in keeping a house comfortable and in reducing the energy and cost required to maintain this comfort level. To do its job effectively, insulation must be of the right type for a particular application, and it must be installed correctly.
In terms of type, level and installation details, ceiling insulation can vary depending on which ceiling we're talking about. Here are some details about ceiling insulation in different parts of the house. We'll start at the bottom and work upwards.
Basement ceiling insulation
Basement ceiling insulation is also the insulation for the first floor. The most common type of basement ceiling insulation is unfaced fiberglass batt insulation. The batts are either "friction-fit" between basement ceiling joists or held in place with stiff steel wire that's "sprung" between joists.
It's important to note that basement ceiling insulation isn't necessary if the basement walls are insulated. Many home energy experts recommend insulating basement walls instead of the basement ceiling because it brings the entire under-house area inside the building envelope. This eliminates the need for pipe insulation in the basement; it also improves the comfort and usability of the basement.
Ceiling Insulation above the living space
It's easier (and perhaps more accurate) to call this attic floor insulation. Fiberglass batts, blown-in cellulose and blown-in fiberglass insulation are most commonly used over the attic floor. For details about insulating the ceiling in a finished attic, see "cathedral ceiling insulation," below.
Cathedral Ceiling Insulation
When the ceiling in a living space is sloped rather than flat, it’s usually referred to as a cathedral ceiling. The insulation space in a cathedral ceiling is limited because of the depth of the rafters. Usually this type of ceiling has insulation baffles installed between rafters to maintain roof ventilation. The baffles are secured to the underside of the roof sheathing, and fiberglass batt insulation is fit between rafters and over the insulation baffles. Batts are usually faced with paper or plastic.
Cathedral ceiling insulation is sometimes referred to as loft insulation or roof insulation.
Dr. Energy Saver will evaluate the ceiling insulation levels in your house as part of our Free Insulation Estimate.
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