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Attic Insulation: Does Your Older Home Have Enough?

Attic Insulation: Does Your Older Home Have Enough?

Was your home built on or before 1998? 

If so, your attic probably does not have enough insulation, according to the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association (NAIMA).

And if that’s true, then your home is losing a lot of heat in winter and gaining a lot of heat in summer, meaning:

  • Your upstairs is less comfortable 
  • You’re spending more money heating and cooling your home than you should be

How much insulation your attic actually needs

The insulation level in your home is measured by R-value, which is how well the insulation resists heat flow.

Higher R-value means less heat escapes your home and, therefore, how often your heating system runs. 

So how much R-value does your attic need?

According to ENERGY STAR, most attics need R-38, which is about 10-14 inches, depending on the insulation type. To estimate if you have enough, just look in your attic. You shouldn’t be able to see your attic’s floor joists.

“Is adding more attic insulation really worth the money?”

It depends how much you’re adding and how much it costs to add it.

First, you’d need to get a cost to add more insulation. 

Second, use this payback estimator tool to see how much it’ll save you. 

Resources for DIY install

If you’re a handyman (or handywoman) who wants to add the attic insulation on their own, you’ll find these resources helpful:

Want to find other ways to save money? Check out our...

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Minneapolis Saint Paul Plumbing, Heating and Air has served the Twin Cities since 1918.