In 2005, Ontario designed and built Canada's first Energy Star labelled home in Canada. This home was built with dense-packed (or dense-blown) cellulose as the wall insulation of choice. Their intent was to produce a better built home with the goal of creating "a proper balance between additional efficiency and price such that it would be attractive to future clients".
Dense packing walls typically results in remarkable performance in the walls.
One of the most effective ways of dealing with existing uninsulated frame walls is to blow cellulose into the wall cavities. It is a popular and time-proven method of retrofitting insulation and is cost effective option for all houses. It is popular for good reason; it works very well.
Dense packing a wall does not eliminate the need for an air barrier in new construction. But in retrofit applications we often get so close that we can typically live without one. Besides, there are no other practical alternatives short of completely reconstructing the wall assembly. So “rock on” and dense pack walls. The approach is practical and cost effective.
The insulating value of cellulose is comparable to that of fiberglass batts; however, because cellulose is more resistant to airflow than fiberglass, it performs better. In a closed cavity, cellulose should be installed by the dense-pack method — that is, to a density of at least 3-1/2 lb. per cu. ft. When cellulose is installed in an existing building with empty stud cavities, it is usually blown through holes drilled in the exterior sheathing. This work typically requires the temporary removal of some of the building’s siding.
Cellulose As Sound Barrier.
Cellulose Is 80% Sound Proof Material which is Used for creating prefect sound barrier between floors or walls within different existing units in a residential/commercial building.
Cavities in a new home can be insulated using one of four methods:
1. Damp-spray cellulose—a mixture of cellulose insulation and water—can be sprayed into the open wall cavities before drywall is installed.
2. Dry cellulose can be installed through holes in air-permeable netting that has been stapled and sometimes glued over the interior face of the studs (photo left).
3. Dry cellulose can be installed through gaps in the interior drywall.
4. Dry cellulose can be installed through holes in rigid-foam insulation that has been installed on the interior side of studs or rafters.
Cavities in an old home can be insulated using one of two methods:
1. Dry cellulose can be installed through gaps in the interior drywall.
2. Dry cellulose can be installed through holes in rigid-surface like Plaster or Drywall that has been installed on the interior side of studs or rafters.
Cellulose insulation is inexpensive. The cost to install R-8 or R-12 of dense-packed cellulose wall is $4.00 to $5.00 per sq. ft. for areas equal or less than 1000 sq. ft. of surface will be higher and Cost of Insulation for Ceilings with higher R values can be determine after visits and proper calculations.
Dense Pack Wall Cellulose is Approved by Ontario Building Code.
Fiberglass Batt Insulation is by far the most common type of home insulation in North America. It’s considerably cheaper than any other types of insulation like Dense pack Cellulose and Spray Foam though this does not mean fiberglass is inferior. When considering the multiple factors involved in installation, we begin to see that all products have similarities in how they perform when everything is done right – it’s more a matter of whether or not you have the right installer.
Fiberglass Batt Insulation has numerous advantages. Because professionals can install the product relatively quickly, it is one of the least expensive ways to insulate your home. When compared to other types of insulation, the fiberglass version generally has the lowest installed price.
Available in rolls and pre-cut panels, batt insulation is very flexible, which means that it can be installed between studs, rafters and joists blocks without leaving any gaps. The snug fit will help stop airflow and the transfer of heat. When installed correctly, it is very energy efficient. Studies have shown batt insulation can reduce the amount of energy required to heat and cool a home by as much as 50 percent. Along with lower energy bills, your home will be more comfortable year round.
Fiberglass Batt Insulation has R value of 3.1 per inch which is lowest to compare with Spray Foam or Dense Pack Cellulose. Usually for walls with 2x4 studs which the real cavity is about 3.5 inch, the maximum achievable R value is about R12. Remember that the Batt insulation needs to be nicely places in the cavities by professional and should not be compressed as because of its structure, if it is compressed, i will lose its efficiency and R value. That being said we cannot force more insulation in each cavity to reach higher R value as it will reduce the effectiveness of the Insulation.
One of the key benefits of Dense pack Cellulose or spray foam insulation is the capacity to seal a space airtight. These two types if insulation creates an air barrier and insulation barrier at one time. It prevents heat transfer; reduces the likelihood of mold; and increases the energy efficiency for your home.
In the other hand with fiberglass batts, creating an airtight seal requires additional work. Since the batts do not naturally provide an air seal, it’s necessary to seal all the studs and cavities before installation of batt insulation which will add additional cost and workmanship and hours to the project.
The Fiberglass Batt Insulation and Dense Pack Cellulose insulation both requires installation of proper vapour barrier. A proper installation must include 6 ml poly vapour barrier to make sure no vapour and humidity will be transferred from warm side of the wall to the cold side and this means the vapour barrier is always installed on the warm side of the wall.
There are several factors to consider when installing home insulation, such as the amount required to achieve the desired R Value, which is based on your particular geographic location. Batt insulation is available in a range of R-values, including medium- and high-density blankets. Properly installing insulation around plumbing and electrical wiring, while ensuring proper ventilation in attics and crawl spaces, can be a complex process. This is where a professional insulation company can help.
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