The Best Attic Insulation: 5 Safe, Efficient Attic Insulation Types to Consider for Insulating Your Home

by SSF | Last Updated Feb. 24th, 2016

If you think you might be paying more for your heating and cooling than you should be, or if you have an older home, there’s a good chance that you don’t have enough insulation. Even newer homes may not have adequate insulation if the contractor only put in the minimum amount of insulation required by building codes. With insufficient insulation, energy loss can occur, resulting in drafty areas, higher utility bills, and an uncomfortable home climate. If you’ve been noticing these problems, it’s probably time to consult a home heating and insulation expert.

Home heating and insulation experts use tools such as infrared camera images to determine which sections of the attic need more insulation. Blue areas in infrared images reveal where cool air may be entering the home during the winter months. After identifying problem areas, home heating and insulation experts are able to seal air leaks and install new or additional attic insulation, preventing your home from losing heat and you from paying more than you should be to heat your home. Keep in mind that even the best insulation will not protect your home from the cold if it’s not installed properly.

Typical attic insulation types include cellulose, fiberglass, mineral wood, spray foam, and rigid foam. It’s also a good idea to consult an expert about attic insulation because they can identify the appropriate R-value — the insulation’s ability to resist heat flow — for your home, and that means a more comfortable home and lower utility bills. We’ve identified the best and safest attic insulation options to help you choose the right insulation for your home’s needs, including attic insulation options earning top ratings by consumers for offering the robust protection many homes require from the cold winter air.

1. Reflectix Staple Tab Insulation, 16 inch x 25 foot roll

Reflectix

Reflectix, Inc. is the largest manufacturer of reflective insulation, offering safe, easy-to-use thermal insulation for cost effective and high efficiency performance. The company’s staple tab insulation is perfect for attic applications, as the metallic foil surface repels heat. Families can rest easy because Reflectix staple tab insulation is environmentally friendly and non-toxic.

Key Features:

  • Fiber free and environmentally safe
  • Lightweight
  • Air bubble lining resists heat transfer
  • Non-toxic

Cost: *Approx. $16.25

2. Reach Barrier Air Single Reflective Polyethylene Insulation Roll, 4 feet x 125 feet
@reachbarrier

Reach Barrier

Reach Barrier offers products that contribute to the overall energy efficiency of a home, with radiant (reflective) barriers that have been proven effective in decreasing both energy consumption and cost, by reducing heat gain in the summer and heat loss in the winter. Reach Barrier’s single reflective air reflective polyethylene insulation rolls are both safe and effective. Designed with sealed air laminated between two layers of durable polyethylene, one white and one reflective, this insulation will not release any fumes or fibers during installation.

Key Features:

  • Retains air longer and provides excellent insulation and sound reduction
  • Meets ASTM standards and complies with building code standards
  • Mess-free, fume-free installation that will not cause itchy skin
  • 125 feet long, 48 inches wide, and 0.02 inches thick

Cost: *Approx. $123.82

3. Owens Corning EcoTouch PINK FIBERGLAS Insulation
@OwensCorning

Owens Corning

Owens Corning EcoTouch PINK FIBERGLAS insulation is designed specifically for attics. With an R30 value, EcoTouch PINK FIBERGLAS insulation is known for its ability to completely fill the cavity, eliminating gaps that create drafts and allow heat to escape during the cold winter months. This unfaced insulation is a safe choice because it contains a minimum of 99% natural ingredients, consisting of minerals and plant-based compounds.

Key Features:

  • 15 inches wide by 25 feet long
  • Suitable for attic re-insulation
  • Unfaced
  • Certified to include a minimum of 58% total recycled content
  • Greenguard verified to be formaldehyde free

Cost: *Approx. $75

4. RadiantGUARD Ultima-Foil Radiant Barrier Foil Insulation
@RadiantGUARD

RadiantGUARD

RadiantGUARD radiant barriers lower heating and cooling costs because they reflect radiant heat back to the source, allowing homes to remain cooler during the summer and warmer during the winter. Ultima-Foil radiant barriers block 97% of the thermal radiant heat energy from passing through, making it an ideal insulation choice for the attic.

Key Features:

  • 4 feet x 125 feet for 500 square feet of breathable coverage for attics
  • Double-sided 99.99% pure, reinforced aluminum to block 97% of the radiant heat in summer and winter
  • Industrialized strength with woven polyethylene scrim for added tear resistance
  • Cannot be torn or ripped, yet is easily cut with scissors

Cost:  *Approx. $94

5. @CertainTeed

CertainTeed

CertainTeed wants to help everyone build more responsibly with fiber glass insulation products that minimize environmental impact and improve energy savings. Their Sustainable Insulation offers long-lasting comfort, including thermal protection and reduced noise levels. It’s also guaranteed to last the life of the building because it won’t settle, accumulate moisture, or lose its R-value over time.

Key Features:

  • 10 inches thick
  • 24 inches wide
  • R-30
  • Covers 88 square feet
  • Fiber glass consists of rapidly renewable content, a high percentage of recycled glass, and a new plant-based binder that contains no formaldehyde

Cost: *Approx. $62.99

Sufficient amounts of insulation will make a world of difference for your home as the weather gets colder. Consulting with a home heating or insulation expert who can ensure that you have the proper insulation coverage in your attic could mean that you’ll be reaching for blankets and sweaters less often and possibly even smiling when you open your next utility bill. Experts will recommend the best type of insulation for your home and ensure proper installation so that you and your family are spending less to stay more comfortable.

About the Author

This post was a contribution from Angela Stringfellow, who writes on behalf of Solvit Connecticut, an electrical, heating and air (HVAC), & plumbing services provider from CT. You can learn more about the services offered by Solvit in some of their most popular areas by following the links below:

 
 
   
 
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