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Most people don’t instantly think about insulation when calling on a roofing company for roof repair or roofing-related improvements. Yet overlooking the insulation in your attic could result in higher utility bills and contribute to the kind of problems that require attention from a roofing contractor. Take a moment to learn more about how attic insulation can affect your roof and what options you have available.

Utility Bills Can Be Higher without Sufficient Attic Insulation

Take a look at your home’s utility bills for the last six months or so. If you notice that it’s been taking more energy to cool and heat your home, it may be because your attic’s insulation is no longer doing a good job of stopping the transfer of air. Even if your roof is still in good shape, air transfer can still have a big impact if sufficient insulation isn’t in place in your attic. Having proper attic insulation combined with other energy efficient updates to your roof and home could leave with much lower utility bills.

Roof Leaks Could Damage Your Attic Insulation

If you recently contacting a roofing company to take care of roof repair work for a leak, you attic insulation may have been compromised. This is more likely to happen if you had a leaking roof but didn’t become aware of the problem right away. Moisture-damaged attic insulation can also be a place where mold grows, which could affect the quality of the air in your home as read in Every Mom’s Page. Attic insulation that’s been widely damaged by moisture will become useless, which is why you want to have it checked when you have roof leaks repaired.

Poor Attic Insulation Can Contribute to Ice Dams

Ice dams are a thick accumulation of ice that forms along the eaves of a roof. You are more likely to have this problem if you have a poorly-insulated attic. It occurs because heat escapes from an attic without effective insulation through the adjacent roof. What this does is cause melting snow to work its way down along the edge of your roof. When this happens, the ice freezes again. Sure, the resulting formations may look attractive, but ice dams can contribute to serious roof-related issues and result in water seeping into your home.

Heat from a Poorly Insulated Attic Can also Cause Roof Problems

Heat naturally moves by conduction, which means it rises and tries to get out through the highest point. The highest point in your attic is, of course, your roof. This added heat then makes its way to your roof’s decking and shingles. You could then find yourself needing to call on roofers more frequently to deal with roof-related problems. If you fail to correct issues with your attic’s insulation, you’ll continue to have related roof woes.

So, How Do You Choose the Right Attic Insulation?

If it turns out that one of the reasons for your roofing issues is your attic’s insulation, you’ll likely benefit from installing entirely new insulation. Start by looking at R-value, which is a measure of the resistance of heat flow. The general recommendation with R-value for attic insulation is between 30 and 49.

Ideally, it’s best to have any existing insulation in your attic professionally removed, especially if it’s older material. While this process is going on, consider having the underside of your roof inspected by roofing experts to make sure there aren’t any structural issues that need to be taken care of before new insulation is put into place. Popular options with attic insulation include: 

• Blanket insulation: Available in batts or rolls, this type of insulation tends to work well in attics with standard joists and beams with few obstructions in the way.

• Loose-fill insulation: If you have limited headroom in your attic and multiple obstructions, this type of insulation can be a smart choice. It can also be blown over existing insulation that’s still in good shape.

• Spray foam insulation: This type of attic insulation will give you the highest R-value for your buck. Open-cell foam insulation is good if you need an effective air barrier, while the closed-cell variation is good if you need a good moisture vapor barrier.

Even if our experienced roofers install a new roof for you or replace an existing one, you won’t be getting your full money’s worth if you forget about attic insulation. Contact us today to talk to a roofing contractor about your roof, or to schedule an inspection to see if it’s time to make repairs or improvements.