How to Install Roofing Insulation

Insulating your roof and attic is a cost-effective way to improve the energy efficiency of your home. It will also help to keep your home warmer during the winter and cooler during the summer. The amount and type of insulation required will vary depending on your climate, the size of your home and your goals for improving energy efficiency.

Controlling Heat Transfer by Convection and Conductive Flow

A well-insulated roof prevents heat from escaping through your roof and into your attic, where it can cause problems in the form of temperature fluctuations. The two main ways that heat is lost from a roof are through convection (air rising and falling) or through conductive flow of heat through gaps in the roof structure.

The first step in installing roof insulation is to assess your existing insulation. This will allow your professional to know if any existing insulation needs to be removed or replaced to install the new insulation. If any existing insulation has mold, mildew or other issues that could impede the installation of the new material, then your roofer should fix those problems before he or she can begin work.

Next, your professional will help you decide which kind of insulation to use. There are several types of insulation available, including batts, rolls and loose-fill materials. The most common are fiberglass batts and rolls. Other types include polyisocyanurate and extruded polystyrene foam board.

Batts and rolls come in different thicknesses and are easy to apply. These are especially useful for small areas, such as soffits or attic dormers. They are typically blown in, but may also be installed manually using a long flexible tube.

Loose-fill insulation is also a popular option. It is available in bags and can be easily spread to fill gaps and cracks. It is usually more expensive than blown-in insulation, but can be more effective in colder climates.

Spray polyurethane foam is another effective option for your roofing insulation needs. It is self-adhered and can be used to both insulate the roof deck and act as an air barrier. This is an excellent choice if you want to achieve the highest R-values possible.

Insulation Rolls

Insulation rolls are a great way to insulate large areas quickly and efficiently. They are usually the most common insulation form for residential and commercial applications. They can be cut to size and rolled out from the perimeter to the middle of the roof area. These are often installed as a top up layer to cover the smaller, harder to reach roof areas.

Reflective Insulation

Designed to resist the flow of thermal radiation, this is one of the most effective insulation options. It consists of a thin foil layer on one side that helps to reflect heat back away from the surface.

Bulk Insulation

The most efficient and affordable insulation option is bulk or blanket-type cellulose fiber, which comes in rolls or batts. This can be installed in the attic, on the floor, or in walls.