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Insulation FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Insulation

Milwaukee’s Home Insulation Experts: S & E Insulation

Insulation FAQs

If you have questions about insulation: you’re not alone! If you’ve never been involved in the process, it is entirely normal to be unsure of the process or what to expect. Our most frequently asked questions are below – but please reach out if you still have unanswered questions after perusing the answers below.

Why is my home too hot or too cold?

Cold, drafty rooms in the winter and hot, humid rooms in the summer aren’t just frustrating – they can be costly too. If your air conditioner is putting in overtime or your furnace is running nonstop, the answer might be in your walls and attic. The right type of insulation and proper air sealing will keep inside air comfortable and outside air, well, out.

 

Why do I have condensation in my attic?

Unwanted moisture is most likely due to warm air moving through the walls into cooler parts of your home. This most often occurs in poorly or uninsulated attics. Warm air from the rooms below leaks through the ceiling and into the attic. When the warm air is quickly cooled down, moisture from the warm air condenses onto the surfaces of your attic – which can leave water droplets and in some cases, small puddles. By adding insulating in your attic, the air temperature will remain consistent throughout your home and will not cause condensation as air moves from floor to floor.

 

Why are there spots on my ceiling during the winter, but not in the summer when it rains?

Determining what causes ceiling stains can be tricky if there is no obvious leak in the roof – especially when it’s in the middle of the winter and it hasn’t been raining. However, more often than not, wet spots on your ceiling during the winter can be attributed to poor attic insulation. Condensation can form between the floors of your home when warm air from a heated room meets the cooler air in the attic. Ensuring the attic is properly insulated is the first step to getting rid of those pesky stains on your ceiling.

 

Should I insulate without air sealing?

Never. Insulation and air sealing go hand in hand. The best way to contain indoor air and keep outdoor air from entering your home is by ensuring your home has both a proper air seal and insulation. With a correctly applied air seal, you can reduce heating and cooling costs, increase comfort and improve indoor air quality. When we quote your insulation project, we’ll ensure you have a proper air seal in place, and fix it if necessary.

Air Sealing Milwaukee: Common air leaks in residential homes

What is a better improvement to my drafty home? New windows or insulation?

That depends on your windows! Many homeowners think that a drafty home can only be fixed by installing new windows. Unless you can feel air movement near your windows, we suggest thinking about insulation. By replacing or installing additional insulation and creating a tighter air seal around your windows, you can reduce drafts and make your home more comfortable.

 

Why is condensation forming on my windows & doors?

Condensation occurs when warm air and cool air meet and a thin layer of water droplets are formed. This may be happening for a few reasons: the windows need to be replaced, the air seal is not working properly, or you need more insulation. Most commonly, insulation and air sealing can take care of this problem and can be less costly than window replacement.

 

How much insulation is necessary?

The quick answer: as much as you can fit in the space. However, this question involves a lot of different factors. Here in Wisconsin, we can have pretty cold winters and humid summers – so it’s important to keep our homes insulated well to keep energy costs down. Think of insulation as a big blanket draped around your home that reduces the exchange of air from inside to outside. Insulation should be installed in your attic and crawlspaces and between your walls and floors. Each type of insulation requires a different volume of material to adequately insulate your home. Our insulation experts will guide you through the process of selecting which insulation material is right for your home, and our crews will install it right – the first time.

 

What is R-Value?

Each type of insulation material is rated on its R-value, or thermal resistance. The higher the R-value, the more effective the insulation material is. Installing more insulation of any type will increase the R-value and resistance to heat flow throughout your home. When you choose the S & E Insulation team at Allrite, rest assured our crews will take a thorough look at your home to determine how much insulation you need and what material is right for you.

 

What type of insulation do you recommend?

This question has many answers, as there is no “one-size-fits-all” solution for insulation. Each situation requires a different type of insulation. For example, loose-fill and blown-in cellulose works well for finished walls and hard to reach places, while blanket fiberglass is best for unfinished walls and floors. It’s best to speak with an S & E Insulation expert about the insulation problems in your home – they’ll help you select the right products for your home.

How do I know I need more/new insulation?

There are many signs that the insulation in your home is not doing its job. Be on the lookout for:

  • Icicles on your roof. While they may enhance that “winter wonderland” feel, icicles are a sign that the heat you turned on to warm living spaces is escaping into your attic. When the cold corners of your roof meet the warmer attic walls, the moisture condenses and snow melts, forming those icicles. By better insulating your house, the heat will stay where you intended. Ignoring this problem can mean expensive roofing and gutter replacement projects in the future.
  • Expensive energy bills. A sure sign that you’re in need of insulation is climbing energy bills. Inside air can easily escape poorly insulated or uninsulated walls, making your your air conditioner or furnace work around the clock to maintain a comfortable temperature. Keep your home comfortable and your bills down by adding new insulation to your walls, floors or attic.
  • Moisture where it shouldn’t be. More often than not, condensation around windows and doors, ceiling stains when it’s not raining and a damp attic are due to ineffective insulation. Cool air plus warm air leads to condensation in places you don’t want it. Before you look into replacing your roof, windows or doors, have an S & E Insulation consultant check out your home to see if insulation can solve the problem.

Is insulation environmentally friendly?

Having an efficient home is important to not only keep bills low, but to conserve energy and resources. The manufacturing process for some insulation types is more “green” than others, but adding more insulation will always make your home more efficient, saving electricity and natural gas. Cellulose is often made from recyled newspapers and phone books, while cotton insulation is made from shredded denim. Spray foam insulation creates the tightest seal and best R-value, reducing energy use in the home.

 

Are you going to put holes in my walls?

The installation for spray foam and blown-in cellulose insulation does require some drilling. To ensure a proper installation, holes are drilled into each section of the wall so our technicians can adequately fill the wall with insulation. Whether this is done on the interior or exterior of the home, the S & E Insulation crews always leave the home as we found it – patching up all holes and cleaning up any debris left behind.

S & E Insulation is Wisconsin’s premier insulation company, serving all of Southeastern Wisconsin since 1992. A division of Allrite Home & Remodeling, we are a family-owned and operated company.

TOP reasons to insulate

According to NAIMA (North American Insulation Manufacturers Association)

1

ENERGY EFFICIENCY

Reducing the need to run your heating/cooling systems directly reduces power plant CO2 emmisions and lowers homeowners’ carbon footprint.

2

REDUCE ENERGY BILLS

Over the past 15+ years, residential electricity prices have jumped 39%! The average homeowner spends $2,200/year on energy bills.

3

homeowner demand

Energy efficiency is an increasingly important factor for homeowners. Whether they’re looking to remain in their home or sell in the near future, an energy-efficient home is desired.

4

sound insulation

Noise can come from outside (sirens, traffic, neighbors) or inside (kids, TVs, music), and the sound control provided by insulation is an attractive benefit.

5

healthy home

The health of your home can directly affect the health of its inhabitants. And for those that suffer from asthma or allergies, protection from outside pollutants and allergens can be essential for well-being.

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