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Somerset County Roofers: Article About About Attic Insulation

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Nearly every home with an attic space has one or more attic access panels. These special entrances are often forgotten about, especially if the homeowner rarely needs to get into the attic. However, these openings can spell trouble for a home's comfort and efficiency. A professional inspection performed by experienced Somerset County roofers can determine how big of a problem the attic's opening is and what can be done to reduce the amount of wasted energy.

An attic access panel that is not insulated acts as an energy drain and major source of unwanted air exchange between the heated and cooled portions of the home's living quarters and the unheated and unconditioned areas of the attic. This thermal flow causes the home's heating and cooling equipment to work overtime trying to keep up with the overload. Humidity control also becomes a problem as the hotter air in the attic holds more moisture, resulting in the development of condensation at nighttime when temperatures in the attic drop.

Missing attic hatch gaskets can also be a problem. Plenty of air seepage can occur around the hatch's edges, much like air leaks around an uncaulked window. A properly insulated attic includes door insulation as well as a functioning gasket to seal the door when it is in the closed position.

The roofers from Peter W Smith Construction in Somerset County NJ would be happy to answer any question you have about roof repair or residential roofing.

To insulate an attic's access door, roofers have a few options. The easiest and most convenient material to use is rigid foam board. This material has a high R value of around 6 to 8 per inch. A 4 or 5 inch thick piece of board would be enough to achieve the U.S. Department of Energy's recommended R value of 38 for the Mid Atlantic region of the United States. Fiberglass batts can also be attached to the interior side of the attic door. For the best results, a minimum of 6 inches of the rolled fiberglass should be used. These options are best for an attic that will rarely need to be accessed by the property owner. A snugly fitting gasket is also essential for fully air sealing the attic door.

For more durable results, especially for attics that will be frequently accessed by the home's owners, roofers could install an attic door that has already been insulated by the manufacturer. These are usually made of layered pieces of oriented strand board that surround a closed cell foam. They can be opened and closed countless times without damage or compaction of the insulation.

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