Most people associate insulation with keeping cold weather out of a home. The mental image you have of insulation is probably one of the snow falling outside and the insulation in the walls and attic keeping the warmth of the fire inside the house. While insulation can do that, it is equally as useful for keeping the hot air outside of a home on a scorching summer day. Basically, insulation exists to prevent heat transfer from one air mass to another. So whether you use it to keep warm air inside your home on a cold day, or warm air outside on a hot day, it is the same idea. For an Arizona homeowner, this means that proper insulation can be just as important for you as it can for a homeowner in Alaska.
How Insulation Makes Your Home More Energy Efficient
Energy efficiency in a home is all about maintaining a steady temperature as much as possible throughout the day. Temperature swings result in high energy usage because it requires a lot of effort to return a house to a livable temperature if it has soared up during the day. For example, keeping a home at a steady 75 degrees is much more efficient than having it climb up to 90 degrees during the day and needing to run the air conditioner heavily to get the temperature back down.
One of the biggest ways that warm air can get into an Arizona home is through the roof. When the sun comes up and the air gets hot, your roof will start to increase in temperature. While the type of roof that you have will affect how strong this radiant heating effect is, all roofs will conduct some amount of heat into the attic of your home. That air will be much warmer than the air inside the living spaces, and it’s only a matter of time before those two temperatures come together.
This is where insulation comes in. If the living spaces of your home are protected from the attic by a layer of well-installed insulation, the air in the attic will have a harder time getting through. More of the hot air will remain in the attic, and more of the cool air will stay in the living spaces. This means less work for the air conditioner, and better energy efficiency overall. Your energy costs will go down in the long-run, and you will be living in a manner that is better for the environment.
Most homes have cellulose which is recycled newspaper. Cellulose settles over time, absorbs moisture (mold), and is flammable. Jim Brown and Sons Roofing uses Owens Corning AttiCat blown-in insulation. It will not settle over time, isn’t itchy like the old fiberglass, won’t absorb moisture (grow mold) and isn’t flammable. It’s made to withstand the test of time and so you won’t have to have more insulation blown in every 5 years.
How Much Will it Cost to Insulate My Home?
Saving money on your energy bill is great, but it will not do you much good if the cost of insulation is too expensive upfront to make it worth your investment. Fortunately, insulation is reasonably affordable, and can definitely pay for itself over the long-term. On average, having insulation installed into your home will cost approximately $1.00 per square foot. So, for example, a 2,000 square foot home would cost around $2,000 to insulate properly. Remember, this is just an estimate and the actual price will vary based on the specific home, prevailing labor rates, etc.
Do you want to spend a couple thousand dollars upfront to properly insulate your home? No, you probably don’t. However, when you start getting your energy bills in the coming months and see how much you are saving, the decision will become an obvious success. Insulation is a one-time cost that can pay for itself month after months for however long you live in the home. Also, the insulation can help increase the sale value of your home because prospective buyers will appreciate the energy savings that it has to offer them. If a home purchase comes down to your home or an identical home in the same neighborhood that is in well-insulated, you will have a big advantage in selling your home successfully.
Don’t make the common mistake of thinking that proper insulation is a cold-weather issue only. Hot weather is just as damaging to a home as cold weather, if not more so. The climate in Arizona remains hot nearly all year round, only further increasing the importance of protecting your home from the blazing sun. By putting in a proper layer of insulation all around your home, you can ensure that the cool air conditioned air that you are paying for stays exactly where it belongs – inside your home.