Everyone knows what insulation is, but it often surprises people just how many different benefits insulation—and its partner, air sealing—can offer a Pennsylvania home and the people who live in it.
Insulation’s primary purpose is to slow the transfer of heat between the inside and outside of your home. Air sealing, on the other hand, closes up all the cracks and gaps in your home’s exterior that allow air movement between the thermal boundaries of your home.
Insulation and air sealing are most effective together, but why exactly are they so important? Today we’re going to explain all of the different ways that insulation and air sealing can impact your home.
1. Reduces Energy Loss
When heat and air are able to freely move in and out of your home, that’s energy being wasted. In the winter, when you’re paying to run your heating system and warm up the air in your home, poor insulation and air leaks create opportunities for that warm indoor air to escape and cold outdoor air to replace it. With proper insulation levels and air sealing, your home’s energy efficiency improves, and as you’ll see, there are many ways to benefit from more efficient home performance.
2. Creates More Even Indoor Temperatures
When your home has cracks, gaps, and other air leaks, it’s likely they won’t be evenly distributed throughout your home. What this often creates are uneven comfort levels—maybe you suffer from that dreaded “hot upstairs” in the summer, or there are particularly cold rooms in your house in the winter and hotter rooms in the summer.
Because proper insulation and air sealing slow energy loss, your home will be able to avoid this kind of temperature imbalance, creating a more comfortable indoor environment for you and your family year-round.
3. Lowers Heating and Cooling Costs
The less your furnace, air conditioner, or heat pump has to work to maintain your desired temperature indoors, the lower your energy bills will be and the more money you’ll save. With proper insulation and air sealing, there will be longer stretches between heating and AC unit cycles, which will not only help you save on monthly costs, but with less wear and tear on your systems, you’ll likely extend the lifespan of your equipment as well.
4. Reduces the Risk of Ice Dams on Your Roof
Ice dams can turn a homeowner’s winter wonderland into a winter nightmare, with water leaking into your home, causing damage, and leaving you without an easy way to address the problem.
Anyone who’s ever suffered from an ice dam knows it’s much better to take action to prevent ice dams than to try to remove them once they’ve already formed, and that’s done with proper attic insulation and air sealing. The less heat that can escape and warm the shingles on your roof, the less chance you’ll have of waking up to a nasty ice dam and a leaking ceiling.
5. Helps Create a Healthier Home
Air leaks in your home make it easier for outside air to get in, and outside air often contains outdoor air pollutants, including dust, allergens, pollen, and mold. Outdoor air can also be very humid, which can introduce humidity and moisture issues into your house. The more sealed and protected your home is from infiltrating pollutants, the more control you’ll have over your indoor air quality.
6. Reduces Indoor Drafts
If you’ve ever been sitting in a room in your house, and you can swear it feels like there’s a window open, even if you know there isn’t, then you know all about indoor drafts! Drafty rooms are caused by differences in pressure between the inside and outdoor air, and they can significantly affect your comfort. With proper air sealing, you’ll reduce the amount of air movement in and out of your home and make your house more comfortable to live in.
7. Helps Avoid Moisture and Mold Issues Inside
When air leaks let water or humid air inside your home, they can not only damage your home’s insulation and make it less effective, but they can also create the perfect conditions for harmful mold growth. Mold isn’t just gross—it can be a health hazard as well, and it can be expensive and a headache to remediate. With proper air sealing, you’ll have better control over the humidity levels in your home and can avoid the conditions that encourage mold growth and moisture issues in your home.