Insulation Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

Installing Insulation could be a very easy job. But what happens when the installation is not properly installed? Serious problems such as fire, moisture, structural problems and humidity can be created when the insulation is not properly installed or attached the framing members. Below you will find a list of some of the most common problems and some recommendations on how to avoid those situations when installing insulation.

1.  Lots of Gaps

When you think everything has been installed in the most appropriate way, you might want to double check it. Leaving gaps or not securing properly the insulation, can lead to air and moisture leaking in and affecting the integrity of the framing and the insulation material itself. Use foam insulation or caulk on small openings and cracks. Gaps that cannot be filled with batted insulation can be filled with foam or blown in loose fill. Secure installation using your staple gun attaching the paper lining to the stud.

2.Using the wrong insulation

This is a very common one, as not all insulation can be installed everywhere. For example, it is very dangerous when the insulation is installed close to water heaters of furnaces. The backing of the insulation is very flammable and can lead to a fire if close to heat related elements.

3.  Basement Insulation

Basements are a special place and should be handled carefully. It is not recommended to install fiberglass insulation in basements. When this type of insulation is used, it will trap moisture and will create mold problems. Basement insulation must be closed cell foam board type and spray for basement insulation.

4.  Insulation Too Tight

It is very common to jam insulation in irregular shaped places, instead of cutting the insulation in the appropriate form. By doing this, you will not be using the insulation as effective as it could be,  reducing the amount of air trapped between its fibers minimizing thus the effective R-value. If you don’t provide space to trap that air and moisture in between the fibers, the insulation won’t be as useful as it should have been.

5.  Vapor Barrier Problems

Additional problems might arise when the work with the vapor barrier is not finished properly The backing of the fiberglass insulation is a vapor barrier so it shall be installed against the wall or the house. If it is not installed this way, it can create condensation and rot.

6.  Adding More Insulation

Sometimes you will want to increase R-values and the smartest way to do it, is by installing additional layers of fiberglass batts. However, when the new layer being installed contains a kraft-paper backing, it will cause more problems than what you can imagine. When this occurs, moisture and be trapped damaging structural member or just reducing the R-values instead of increasing it.

7.  Lights and Vents

Insulation material is normally very flammable so it is important to properly install insulation around lights and vents. You must leave at least four inches around the light fixture free of insulation, specially in attics. Also remember not to wrap the insulation around electrical wiring as the heat can spark a fire. In addition, vents and water heaters shall be free of insulation as the heat can really spark ignite the insulation.

Recommendations on Insulation

Insulation is very easy to install if you follow professional installation methods, so be sure to follow recommendations in order to install insulation the right way. Finally, remember use the right thickness and type of insulation to have a properly insulated building.