If you have an older home, there may not be any insulation between your walls. This simply was not a standard building practice until the past few decades. Homes without insulation in the walls can be drafty and inefficient. But you can't exactly knock down the walls and unroll insulation between them. Luckily, there's an easier solution. You can hire an insulation contractor to install blown-in insulation between your walls. Here are some questions you may have as you consider this service.
1. How does the insulation get into the wall cavities?
To install blown-in insulation, contractors first make a few small holes in your walls. They then insert a specialized nozzle into the hole, and through that nozzle, they blow in particulate matter. This matter may be fiberglass or cotton, depending on your preferences. It stacks up inside the wall spaces, finding its place between wall joists. When the wall space is full, the contractor removes the nozzle and plugs the hole.
2. What walls need blown-in insulation?
Most contractors will recommend adding insulation to each one of your exterior walls. If there is a wall that is hard to access, they might skip that one with the knowledge that failing to insulate it will negatively impact energy efficiency to some degree. If desired, you can also have blown-in insulation added to some of your internal wall cavities. For instance, you may want to insulate the interior walls around your kitchen insulated to keep the heat from cooking from passing into nearby rooms. This is not as important as insulating exterior walls, however.
3. How long does it take to have blown-in insulation installed?
An insulation contractor should be able to insulate most homes in less than a day. The most time-consuming part is often figuring out where to place the holes so they're not too obvious. Small homes may be fully insulated within a couple of hours. Larger homes might take all day.
4. How often does blown-in insulation need to be replaced?
Unless you have a fire or flood, you should never need to have your insulation replaced. However, you may want to have your contractor back in two or three years to top off the insulation. It does naturally settle over time, leaving a non-insulated gap at the tops of walls. Having the insulation topped off will close this gap and improve efficiency.
If you have an old, poorly insulated home, blown-in insulation is a good solution. Talk to an insulation contractor to learn more.