Are You Thinking of Insulating Your Home This Year?


You have seen me discuss air sealing and saving energy from time to time here on Hometalk and on a few radio shows and local TV stations. Here is a few reasons why you really need to understand why you need a pro if your not really sure what your doing.
Not all photos were taken by me but by other friends that do air sealing and insulation work.
If you do not know how to properly insulate your home or are thinking about it ask and I or others here on HT can provide you with expert advice on how to do it right and safe.
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
This is an example of doing it wrong. Notice the black stain on the pink insulation. This is from air leaking into the attic and insulation trapping the dust as it leaves.
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
Back drafting on hot water heaters is not safe. Rust on the hood indicates that this has been going on for a long time. Melted foam on the pipes shows just how hot it can get.
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
Have a bath vent? Here is one that not only is starting to rust from moisture but notice all the dust in the insulation. These vents need to be run outside of house, before you insulate.
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
Here is a perfect example of heat loss in a home. The warm air melts the snow where it runs out past the vented eave and refreezes. If you have this even in small amounts, your wasting energy. Proper air sealing will stop this
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
Moisture on the back side of a foam insulation job shows that the contractor failed to use enough foam. And that the house is leaking a lot of moisture raising both heating bills and likelihood of mold development.
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
Here a contractor filled the attic area with cellouse insulation, but failed to block the areas where the air flow runs back to the furnace. Causing poor heating in the house by starving the return air flow.
are you thinking of insulating your home this year, go green, home maintenance repairs, hvac
This is the most important. Older homes have Knob and Tube wiring. These wires must never come into contact with insulation. Notice the burns on the paper. Always have an electrical contractor rewire your home if you have this system.

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Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • April
    on Nov 12, 2015

    My inspector suggested insulating the attic, getting a attic fan and putting plywood on the floor. What are the benefits of having a whole house attic fan?

  • Taf
    on Dec 10, 2015

    Attic insulation. Hello, I recently moved into a house which was built in 1961. Southern California area. The attic is quite large and the insulation looks like dirty cotton? It's very loose, so I don't think it was in rolls like the pink stuff in your pictures. My question - do I need to have removal done by specialist ? Is this type of insulation Asbestos's ? Thank you,

Join the conversation

2 of 13 comments
  • Nancy Jenkins
    on Jan 21, 2015

    I enjoy the This Old House and related that comes up from your way. Most of ours stick around Toronto, Ontario even Mike Holmes stays East. Sure would like it to have This Old House team come and do over my house. Year built 1942. I can see shutters on windows and many other additions and fix attic up so can be used at least 2 or 3 seasons. Got the place reasonably landscaped ,my way. Grow my own veggies and some fruit. Use used coffee grounds from nearby Cafe.

  • John White
    on Apr 27, 2018

    Here are the top insulating options to keep your house warm.


    • You should start your insulation work with your ceiling because 25 to 35% heat loss or gain is through house's roof. So it ceiling insulation is one of the most important and effective.
    • Fill out the wall cavities with reflective foils or batts when a house is being built.
    • Seal and protect windows or doors.
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