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Even if you already have fiberglass batt insulation in your attic, adding blow-in insulation to your home’s attic can lower your annual energy cost by 10% all year long. That’s because blow-in insulation saves money by sealing small gaps and settling into open pockets, filling in the sneaky spots that can allow your heat to escape from your home in the winter and allow it to seep in during the summer, making your air conditioner work overtime.
With a free loaner machine and our easy-to-follow instructions you can tackle this simple home improvement project and begin feeling the difference right away. You may even find your home is quieter because a thicker layer of insulation helps muffle sound. Best of all, unless you have a roof leak, you’ll probably never need to do this DIY project again!
There are three main types of blow-in insulation. The most popular is formaldehyde-free fiberglass. This insulating material is low cost, light weight, and has a high loft or thickness. It makes an ideal attic insulation that’s easy to install in an existing home.
Another variety is cellulose blow-in insulation. This type is usually made of shredded cardboard or newspaper that’s been recycled and chemically treated for mold and fire resistance. It is also relatively heavy, and its weight can cause ceiling sag if improperly installed. If cellulose blow-in insulation gets damp, it compacts, becomes heavy as it holds moisture, and can even become a breeding ground for fungi.
The final variety of blow-in insulation is rock wool. Also called mineral wool, rock wool is a very porous material that traps air. It is made from lava rock and chalk that is melted together at a very high temperature and then blown or spun into hair-like fibers. It tends to be expensive.
All types of insulation are rated by their R value, a measure of how well a given material prevents heat from entering or leaving your home. McCoy’s states are mostly in Zones 2 and 3, where the R value is recommended by EnergyStar.gov to be R25 to R38, generally about 13 to 14 inches deep.
If you have existing insulation and it’s in good shape (you just don’t have enough of it) there’s no need to remove it. Blow-in insulation can be added on top of existing insulation to get the R-value you desire. However, if your existing insulation is even a tiny bit damp from a leak, remove and discard any damaged portions before adding blow-in insulation.
This calculator rounds up to the nearest full bag.
Follow these tips to get ready to add blow-in insulation to your attic.
Installing blow-in insulation doesn’t require any special skill except the ability to withstand the heat in your attic if you tackle this project in summertime. Take frequent breaks out of the heat, drink plenty of water, and know the signs of when you’ve had enough of the heat. When you’re ready to begin, follow these steps:
Head to your local McCoy’s and we’ll be happy to walk you through the process of properly installing blow-in insulation in an existing home and help you select the right products. We’ll also make sure we’ve got a free loaner machine ready for you—just bring it back when you’re done. In just a few hours, you’ll be ready to sit back and enjoy your energy-efficient home!