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How Much Insulation Do I Need In My Attic?

As we head towards the fall, people are beginning to think about whether their home is ready for winter. Because of this, we’ve written articles on home maintenance you should pursue each fall. One thing you can do anytime of year, however, is ensure that your home has the right about of attic insulation. This can help keep your home warm and your costs down during the winter, but it also will ensure your home stays cool in hotter months, as well. If you’ve ever asked yourself “how much insulation do I need in my attic,” keep reading. We’ll share some simple ways to check to make sure your home is buttoned up tight.

How much insulation do I need in my attic in Cincinnati?

How much attic insulation do you need in a home? Well, it depends on where the home is. It is recommended that homes in the south are insulated to an “R” rating of R38. Cincinnati homes, however, should have attics insulated to a level of R49 due to the colder climate. To find out what your attic’s current rating is, follow these steps:

Step 1: Take a Look

Take a peek into your attic. Do you see the joists rising above your fiberglass or blown-in cellulose insulation? If so, you probably need more.

Step 2: Measure

Using your tape measure, measure the height of your insulation from the bottom of the joist to the top of the insulation. You should have just over 16 inches of insulation in your attic (roughly R3 per inch).

Step 3: Add

Now that you know the answer to the question “How much insulation do I need in my attic,” it’s time to add more. If you have cellulose insulation that doesn’t approach the top of the joists, distribute more over the entirety of your attic. Do this until the cellulose reaches the top of the joists. If your cellulose already reaches the top of the joists, or you have fiberglass batt insulation, add an appropriate thickness of fiberglass batt on top of your existing insulation. Lay the insulation perpendicular to the joists or existing insulation. This will reduce the chances for air to leak through the insulation.

(Be sure to use gloves and wear a dust mask when installing insulation.)

Step 4: Be sure you don’t…

There are a couple of things you must not do when insulating an attic. First, be sure that there is no vapor barrier between layers of insulation. If the insulation you are adding has a paper vapor barrier, be sure to remove it before installing. This will prevent the trapping of moisture against the bottom layer of insulation. Secondly, never cover your soffit vents with insulation. Remember, air should be able to flow from outside the home through your attic. Covering these vents will prevent that.

How much insulation do I need in my attic?

So, how much do insulation do you have? Too little? Are your vents covered? It only takes a little bit of time to rectify those problems. Remember, if you’re not really interested in climbing into your sweltering/freezing attic this year, just call ProMaster. We’d love to help you get your home buttoned up so that it’s nice and warm this winter, and cool next summer. Simply contact us by phone at 513-322-2914, or use the “Reach Out” form below. Our multi-disciplined “Home Repair Heroes” can handle any home maintenance or repair needs you have!

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