City Heat and Air Conditioning is the Knoxville, TN area go-to for your residential and commercial heating and cooling solutions. With colder temperatures on the horizon, you’ll be turning up the heat on your HVAC unit. In homes with attics, basements, and/or crawl spaces the heating and air conditioning system may strain to maintain temperature if there is not adequate insulation. Insulating your attic, basement, and/or crawl space are key components in keeping your house warm in the winter months, the utility bill lower, and the HVAC system running smoothly.
With attics, it’s important to check the level of insulation you have in the space. No matter the type of insulation installed, it should be level or above the floor joists (3-4 inches) making the joists less visible. If your floor joists are easily spotted—it’s probably time to add more insulation. More covering means better insulation which results in less heat or air escaping your home lessening the effort of your heating and cooling system. Within all of this, it’s also important to note that proper distribution of insulation is key. Check to make sure your insulation is evenly distributed throughout the attic with no low spots and equal dispersal amongst the middle of the attic and the outer area leading to the eaves.
Insulation in basements can be added to the exterior and interior walls, as well as the ceiling. If you are building a new home with a basement make sure to think about insulating the exterior walls to help minimalize heat loss through the foundation and provide some protection against moisture. Insulating the exterior walls can also help conserve room size as opposed to insulating on the interior. If your home is established, exterior insulation is less practical than insulating the interior walls. Interior insulation is less expensive and allows for options in the choice of insulation you use. With the ceiling, this is another spot where installation of insulation can help provide a warmer environment or temperature control when your heating and air conditioning system is in use. Without proper basement insulation, your home can become drafty with cool air seeping in and warm air leaking out causing your heating and air conditioning unit to work harder than usual.
Crawl space insulation is a part of overall home air sealing and insulation to help keep your HVAC system running efficiently. There are two types of crawl spaces, ventilated and unventilated, and depending on which one your home has controls how you should insulate. The end goal, however, is to enclose the space in a thermal envelope that alleviates stress on your HVAC unit. Ventilated spaces are ideal because they aid in getting rid of moisture, and fiber glass insulation can be easily installed under the subfloor between joists. Be sure to cover your insulation with a vapor barrier to prevent moisture and mold development. If you have an unventilated space, insulate the walls rather than the subfloor of the room above. This will require less insulation and will eliminate the need to insulate ductwork and pipes, separately. An insulated crawl space ensures that your heat and cool air are not being easily lost through the floor.
Not sure if you are adding the right type of insulation? No worries! You do not necessarily have to use the same type of insulation that currently exists in your attic, basement, or crawl space. In the attic, you can add loose fill on top of fiberglass batts of blankets or vice-versa by using fiberglass batts that have no paper or foil backing. With basements and crawl spaces it’s your choice on fiberglass batts/blankets or trying spray foam insulation. If insulating exterior walls when building your home use foam boarding against the foundation. Proper insulation of attics, basements, and crawl spaces makes sure that your home is being efficiently heated and cooled by your HVAC unit.
If you are finishing an attic or basement in your home, City Heat and Air Conditioning can help you with the expansion of your existing heating and air conditioning system to accommodate for the new add-on! For answers to questions about how your HVAC system could be affected by air leaks or other common household problems, please contact us at 865-938-1005 or click HERE to schedule an appointment with one of our HVAC professionals!