The growing push for environmental consciousness has resulted in a paradigm shift in how firms conduct business. And as a homeowner, you have a responsibility to do your part.
If you live in Texas, consider working with Stellrr Insulation & Spray Foam – experience Austin insulation specialists like you never have before. They can provide eco-friendly insulation solutions designed to protect your home and reduce energy consumption, thereby making a difference.
All the same, after scouring the interweb, we’ve come up with the best and healthiest insulation options based on material quality, longevity, cost, and R-value. If you’re not in the know, R-value is the measure of how well a particular material resists heat flow. Hence, a higher R-value means greater insulation performance. Let’s look at the four materials in detail below.
This material’s popularity hinges on two defining qualities: its low cost and ease of installation – but that’s beside the point. Fiberglass is crafted from 40-60% recycled glass bottles. The bottles are shredded, melted down, and spun into tiny fibers, then combined with binder materials to create insulation.
It’s also highly effective at controlling sound, but it tends to suffer in regard to air infiltration. In other words, air can easily pass through the material and get trapped in your home. That said, fiberglass has commendable insulation properties, although it doesn’t beat bio-based spray foam (as you’ll notice below).
Given its R-value of 2.3 to 4.3, you need more to achieve the same desired results. But the fact that it can hold its own for nearly 100 years makes it an excellent pick for homeowners on a budget.
85% recycled newspapers and paper byproducts are used to create cellulose insulation. Thus, on that account alone, it offers a great way to support the environment. Furthermore, it also serves as a fire-retardant and has a higher R-value of 3.3 to 3.6.
However, it can easily absorb moisture, thus reducing its insulative properties makes it a less desirable pick. And despite being a low-cost option, it only has a 30-year service life, making it lag behind other alternative insulating materials.
Bio-Based Spray Foam
Building codes in various states can be very stringent, making it critical to stay updated on the latest standards before undertaking any building project. In terms of insulation, spray foam manufacturers have made significant strides in creating eco-friendly options meeting many air quality standards. Whether we’re referring to open- or closed-cell formulations, you can count on emerging products to meet your insulation goals while keeping the environment safe.
Moreover, because spray foam insulation is such an effective sealant, it helps improve indoor air quality by blocking harmful particles and gases from entering the building. By meeting or exceeding current air quality standards, spray foam insulation can help you create a healthier home environment for your family.
And as low-VOC, bio-based spray foam insulation products continue to hit the market, you can expect even better results in terms of energy savings and indoor air quality. Besides that, if we factor in the longevity of spray foam (up to 100 years), and its ability to reduce energy loss, we can see why it’s an increasingly popular choice. Even so, it might not be the cheapest option in your product lineup.
But truth be told, conventional spray foam isn’t nearly as sustainable as the newer formulations. Hence, if you want to stay on top of the latest building and insulation standards, environmentally friendly spray foam would be the right option.
So, how does spray foam stack up in terms of its R-value? Generally speaking, closed-cell spray foam has an impressive R-value of 6.5 or higher per inch – making it one of the most efficient insulation materials.
Rock and slag fibers – abundant materials in the manufacturing process – combine to create mineral wool insulation. It boasts an R-value of 3.7 to 4.2, making it a very efficient insulation material.
However, its higher price tag makes it a less economical choice for some. Even so, if you opt for mineral wool, you can actively help conserve the environment. Besides, the material has a 100-year lifespan, meaning you don’t have to replace it – unless you decide to do so or other circumstances dictate.
What are your needs and environmental goals? Is price a major factor when shopping for insulation material? While the materials above are excellent choices, bio-based spray foam is arguably the most eco-friendly type of insulation. Even so, the other options allow you to make healthy choices for your family. And by doing our bit for the environment, we can all make a difference.