In a lot of homes, the attic is an unfinished space used for storing things.
Even in homes with finished attics, these spaces are put to little or no use.
Attics are of great significance when it comes to energy efficiency in the home.
Keeping your house warm, especially you live in a cold climate, can have an overwhelming cost effect.
With proper insulation, you can considerably reduce heat loss and reduce the amount you spend on energy.
The discouraging thing is that full house insulation can be costly and hard to carry out, but with attic insulation, you would still be able to reduce energy loss considerably.
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However, for energy efficiency, you have to consider which parts of an attic to insulate.
In this article, we will discuss whether attic walls should be insulated or not, but before we do that, let us take a look at some benefits of attic insulation.
Benefits of Attic Insulation
The attic is much more than a storage space, and if you want it to perform the function of reducing heat loss, it must be adequately insulated.
Here are some of the other benefits of attic insulation.
It reduces utility bills
A considerable part of your utility bills is determined by how much energy you expend in heating, cooling, and ventilation.
An uninsulated attic will allow cold and heat to enter your living spaces freely, causing heaters, ventilators, and air conditioners to work harder in making the interior atmosphere more conducive.
When these appliances work harder, what you spend on energy increases, so you should insulate your attic as well as you can to reduce the cost of your utility bills.
The amount saved by attic insulation may not seem considerable in the present, but when you consider it over some time, it becomes a significant amount.
Good air quality
When your attic is not adequately insulated, some contaminants will manage to get into your interior space and affect the air quality negatively.
The areas through which these contaminants pass through may not be visible to you, but they somehow manage to get through.
Proper attic insulation can block all the spaces through which these contaminants pass through and maintain the quality of your indoor atmosphere.
If your interior space gets contaminated, you may have to incur the additional cost of getting an air purifier to improve the air quality.
It strengthens the structure
It is a normal thing for a home to degrade over time, but this doesn’t mean after just a few years.
Heat and moisture can cause progressive damage to your home structure.
Heat will cause expansion and contraction of building elements, while moisture will seep into the walls and erode them.
Nevertheless, if you can carry out proper insulation, all these destructive activities will be effectively hindered.
The growth of mold and mildew can also be contained, as they are the results of condensation, which can be adequately prevented by insulation.
At certain levels, cold and heat can make your interior space very uncomfortable.
While it is true that there are heating and cooling systems that can serve as remedies to control temperature, they consume a lot of energy.
In the absence of proper insulation, they can become inefficient as a result of temperature fluctuations.
The thermostats in these heating and cooling system cannot function accurately in an uninsulated environment, as a result of external temperature influence.
In a condition like this, you will find it quite hard or even impossible to get the optimal indoor temperature level.
On the other hand, a properly insulated attic will help you maintain a preset temperature in your interior space.
Should Attic Walls Be Insulated?
There are some things you should consider before you go ahead with attic insulation if you don’t want to waste money and effort.
Firstly, is the attic a finished one or not?
If it is an unfinished attic, then you probably have other uses for it apart from storage purposes; in a case like this, all you have to worry about is the space below the attic.
Carry out proper insulation on the floor of the attic alone to keep the area below warm in winter and cold enough in summer.
However, if you have a finished attic, you can put the space to some other use apart from storage purposes.
A finished attic in itself has a bit of insulation, but this can never be enough.
It is only in a situation like this you have to carry out full insulation of the walls and ceiling.
In an already finished attic, it may be quite hard to get into the space between the attic and the ceiling; this is why you should plan for attic insulation as you build your home.
To insulate the walls in an already finished attic, you may have to break the drywall.
There are two ways to insulate the walls in an already finished.
You can run the insulation between the rafter and the attic, down to the ceiling of your home; there will be no insulation directly on the knee wall if you use this method.
The other way to insulate a finished attic is to run the padding along the walls of the attic, the ceiling, and then continue down along the knee wall to the non-living part of the attic.
If you choose the latter, you should know that the space behind the insulated knee wall will remain either extremely cold or extremely warm.
Should attic walls be insulated? It depends on if the attic is a finished one or not.
An unfinished attic that is used for nothing more than storage doesn’t need insulated walls.
Notwithstanding, a finished attic that will be used as a living space or for some other purpose should have insulated walls.
Attic insulation is something you can do yourself, most especially if you are insulating only the floor.
Insulating the walls is a different case, as it requires more effort and materials.
If you are not confident in your ability to install the insulation, there are professionals you can hire to get it done for you.