Is Your House Properly Insulated?

How do you know if your home has insulation, and if so, was it installed properly?

I was quite sure our 1906 Victorian did not have insulation, what do you think?

Our future bedroom, we did not find much insulation buried in the 1906 frame work

I taught my insulation class at the Bayport – Bluepoint Public Library last weekend. One of my students answered this question, Brian “in winter, the dishes in my kitchen cabinet are cold, in the summer, they are very warm.

It is very difficult to determine what is inside of your walls.

Thermal Imaging Camera

The proper way to determine the presence of insulation within walls is by utilizing a Thermal Imaging Camera.

thermal imaging Camera

But sometimes, you can see the insulation.

In Your Basement

Basement/crawl space insulated properly

In your basement/crawl, you should see the fiberglass, not the vapor barrier (paper).

In Your Attic

attic insulation installed properly

If you can safely get into your attic, and can see the insulation, you can assess the attic insulation. Joists, the horizontal framing members that create your ceiling below, may be visible every 16 inches. If the insulation between the joists is not up to or over the joists, you do not have enough attic insulation.  Also, if you have insulation batts, and you see the paper (vapor barrier) the insulation was installed improperly.
If you see great heaping piles of blown in insulation, do not disturb them. Fluffy insulation traps air, and insulates your home

Go to the Yard!

snowy roof-well insulated attic

After a snowfall, go out to your front or back yard and look at your roof. If you see the snow melting quickly, while your neighbors’ roofs keep their snow, you have poor insulation. The expensively heated air in your living space is conducting up through your ceiling, into your attic, and warming the attic enough to melt snow. Ideally, your attic temperature should be equal to the outside air temperature.