Has Your Insulation Gone Bad? The Signs It's Time To Replace Insulation blog header image
November 30, 2023

As the brisk winds of autumn sweep through the bustling streets of York to the fields of Gettysburg, the winter chill will also creep into our homes. And while the days of cranking the air conditioner to keep from sweating are still fresh in our memories, the time has come to switch the thermostat to heat! But if you have found yourself wondering already this year (or in years past) where all that heat is going, or why you just can’t seem to stay comfortable, the question looms: has your insulation deteriorated or, even worse, gone bad?

When insulation starts to deteriorate, it can be as subtle as the whisper of fallen leaves in Lancaster or as noticeable as the stark changes in Harrisburg's skyline. To safeguard your sanctuary and your wallet, it's essential to recognize the top signs that your insulation is no longer performing. Here are the signs that it's time for a home insulation upgrade.

The Temperature Tango: Constant Thermostat Adjustments

If you find yourself constantly turning up the thermostat as the outside temperatures drop, yet you still feel cold throughout your home, your insulation is not doing its job. A well-insulated home should maintain a steady temperature without the need for continuous thermostat adjustments. Frequent tinkering with the thermostat can be a sign that your insulation is allowing all the heat to escape (often out of the top of your home) and will keep your heating system running constantly. 

Surging Energy Costs: The Price of Comfort

If you are noticing changes in your thermostat usage, you will likely notice changes in your energy costs, too. Insulation that is no longer working can be a silent thief, causing heating and cooling systems to work overtime to maintain a comfortable temperature, resulting in higher energy bills.

Feeling Indoor Drafts In Your Home

One of the most telling signs that your insulation may need a second look is the presence of drafts in your home. If you feel a persistent cool breeze as you walk past walls, windows, or doors (even when they’re closed), or you notice a significant change in temperature as you go up and down your stairs, insulation is often the culprit. These drafts are not just a minor inconvenience; they're a clear indication that warm air is escaping during the cold months and intruding during the heat of summer.

Air Sealing

It is also worth mentioning that the overall number of air leaks in your home can contribute to these symptoms as well. Air gaps in the basement, around windows and doors, or in the attic can make the inefficiency and discomfort of poor insulation much worse. Professional air sealing and insulation replacement are two home upgrades that should almost always happen at the same time!

Unwanted Guests: Pest Infestations

Another unexpected sign that your insulation may need replacement is the presence of pests in your attic or basement. Insulation can be a welcoming nesting ground for rodents and insects and will render it ineffective — and even unhealthy. These uninvited guests cause further damage to your insulation and introduce bacteria and feces, which can make their way into your breathing air.

Moisture and Mold

Moisture accumulation that has made its way to your insulation is a home comfort and efficiency killer. If you discover dampness or mold in your attic or basement, it's a red flag that your insulation may be compromised. Wet insulation loses its effectiveness and can also lead to more severe issues like rot and mold, which pose risks to your home's structure and your health.

How Old is Your Insulation?

Insulation doesn't last forever. If your home is several decades old and you have not made any changes to the original insulation, it's likely time for an upgrade. Even if you don't notice any of the signs mentioned above, the age of your insulation could be enough reason to consider insulation removal services and new insulation installation.

The Visual Test: Seeing Is Believing

Lastly, a simple visual inspection can often tell you all you need to know about your insulation's condition. If it's visibly worn, sagging, or depressed, or if you can see gaps and holes, it's time to replace it.

Assess Your Insulation by Scheduling an Home Assessment 

Insulation is an integral component of your home's efficiency and comfort. By being vigilant and recognizing the signs of failing insulation, you can take proactive steps to ensure that your home in York, Harrisburg, Carlisle, Lancaster, Gettysburg, Mechanicsburg, Camp Hill, Millersburg, Greencastle, or Dillsburg remains a haven through the changing seasons. 

If you are looking to get to the bottom of your comfort and efficiency issues by assessing your insulation, Energy Smart Home Improvement is the go-to home performance and insulation expert in Central and Southeast Pennsylvania. Schedule an home assessment with our team, and we will use our extensive building science knowledge and diagnostic tools to outline exactly where your insulation needs replacing. 

Improve home comfort and efficiency when you remove and replace your insulation! Schedule a home assessment for your home with Energy Smart Home Improvement. Call 717.258.6574 to get started.

Is your old insulation to blame for your indoor drafts and energy costs?

Find out, with a home assessment!


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