Common Insulation Problems to Look Out For

Written by  //  August 15, 2020  //  Home Construction  //  Comments Off on Common Insulation Problems to Look Out For

Insulation serves the important purpose of blocking the flow of heat into and out of a home, which can provide numerous benefits. For example, insulation can improve the comfort of a space, block out sound, and help lower one’s energy bills. However, if the insulation isn’t installed or maintained properly, it can end up being relatively useless and even damage one’s home and health. To ensure your insulation isn’t doing more harm than good, here are some of the most common insulation problems to look out for.

The Formulation of Ice Dams on the Roof

If you live in a cold environment, ice dams forming on the roof is a common problem associated with poor attic insulation. If the insulation in one’s attic isn’t working effectively, then excess heat will be able to escape through the roof and cause the accumulated snow on it to melt. Once the snow melts, it will run down the sloped roof before eventually re-freezing towards the bottom, where it is cooler.

The cycle of thawing and freezing will cause a ridge or “ice dam” to form at the bottom of the roof, which will prevent melted water from running off. As a result, water will get trapped on the roof, which can cause sagging and potentially result in a collapsed roof. To avoid such damage, it is crucial to spot ice dams early and take immediate action to improve attic insulation.

Improper Installation

Improperly installed insulation can have several negative consequences. For example, poor attic installation can result in numerous gaps, which can reduce the effectiveness of the insulation, ultimately increasing your energy bill and reducing your comfort.

In some cases, the impact of poorly installed insulation can be far more serious. If a homeowner installs closed or open-cell spray foam insulation incorrectly, dangerous chemical off-gassing can occur, which may result in respiratory issues and even cancer. To avoid the negative impacts of poorly installed insulation, it is important to hire a professional insulation contractor.

Mold and Mildew Outbreaks

Another common insulation problem to look out for is mold and mildew outbreaks. While certain types of insulation, such as spray foam insulation, are resistant to mold, other types can become a breeding ground for mold spores. If mold starts to develop in the area where your insulation resides, then it is likely only a matter of time before the spores attach themselves to the insulation.

Once mold begins to develop on insulation, it is important to completely remove the insulation in order to eliminate the mold and prevent a future outbreak. Because insulation is often situated in infrequently visited areas, such as crawlspaces, attics, and basements, it is important to periodically check those areas. Doing so will allow you to identify early signs of mold before it has the chance to spread to your insulation, which would necessitate more extensive repairs.

image credit: Pixabay

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