What Exactly is R-Value and Why is it So Important?

Posted by Ecostar Insulation on September 14, 2016

On a more technical level, R-Value measures resistance to heat flow through a given material. For an average homeowner, it translates into a simpler equation – the higher the R-Value rating, the greater the resistance to any heat flow. But this is only part of the explanation, since there are a number of other factors that should be considered. In fact, beyond the R-Value, there are other dynamics that determine the effectiveness of home and attic insulation.

For a homeowner, it’s important to understand the basics of home insulation, so as to make good purchasing decisions. In fact, understanding the basics will influence the choice of product when shopping for home insulation. As for R-Value, the actual rating number isn’t enough to determine the effectiveness or efficiency of the installed insulation product. The reason for this is actually simple – air moves in and out of the home in various ways.

While insulation is meant to stop air movement, R-Value only measures conduction (one of the ways that warm air moves around). It means that other factors like temperature, humidity, and wind aren’t considered. Not to mention air infiltration, which significantly reduces performance of any installed insulation. Indeed, when a building “envelope” is not properly air sealed, even a high R-Value cannot be relied upon – it will be compromised. Depeneding on the type of insulation you choose, from spray foam insulation to blown-in insulation, the R-values will vary.

Choosing the Best Insulation for Your Home

The best way to ensure optimum R-Value performance is to insulate with a product that will stop air movement and prevent the accumulation of moisture. Spray Foam Insulation does it all with one application. It prevents heat loss from all possible sources; it inhibits air infiltration; and it installs very high R-Value. Spray Foam Insulation also stops moisture from accumulating because it serves as an air barrier and moisture barrier at one time.

spray foam insulation

For optimum R-Values when Spray Foam Insulation is installed, a professional approach is key. In fact, there’s a lot to consider: building codes must be followed; product specifications must be followed; and there is no room for installation shortcuts. Product performance is ensured when an expert manages and installs Spray Foam Insulation. Most importantly, this is not a product or installation that’s suited for the do-it-yourself enthusiast.

Spray Foam Insulation is widely considered to be superior to other insulation products. But it has to be installed professionally – a bad job might require a complete re-install, so its worth doing right the first time. With an experienced contractor on hand, the right product can be chosen, the proper scope of work can be determined, and every effort can be made to ensure the best R-Value for the building envelope.

Long term, Spray Foam Insulation has more benefits than other insulation products. Even with the premium cost, the annual dollar savings on heating and cooling make for a “payback” period that is reasonable. The installation will last a lifetime; it won’t need replenishment; and it won’t need replacement. Bottom line, spray foam insulation is a very cost effective approach to home insulation, with an original up-front investment that is worthwhile.

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