One of the quickest and most cost-effective ways to reduce energy waste and make your home energy efficient is through installing more insulation. Installing additional insulation can protect your home from outside temperature fluctuations, protect against air leaks and control moisture.
When installing insulation there are several factors to consider including will you do it yourself or hire a contractor? Do-it-yourselfer’s can often insulate basement or crawlspace walls or floors over unheated areas using batt or blanket insulation. Installing blow-in insulation requires special equipment and is a job that is best left to a professional installer.
If you do it yourself, you can save a lot of money from paying a contractor. However, make sure conditions are right to be able to do a relatively fast and comfortable job. The attic needs to be roomy so you can lay batts of insulation on the floor. Also be prepared to crawl around and subject your knees to some abuse.
To install yourself use the correct tools and protective gear.
Basic Tools Needed:
- Tape measure
- Utility knife
- Straightedge for cutting insulation
- Lightweight staple gun
- Hammer and appropriate fasteners
- Portable work light
- Boards or sheets of plywood for a safe and large work area
- Insulation supports to hold insulation in place
- Pole or rake for pushing insulation
- Work gloves
- Loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirt
- ISHA approved safety glasses
- Disposable dust respirator
If you have it done professionally, gather estimates from several contractors for a stated R-value. Remember, as with anything you get what you pay for and installing insulation is no different. Confirm their materials, labor and procedure they will use. Get the bid in writing and confirm with them how long the price will be good for.