4 Types of Insulation for Your House (Pros & Cons) (2022)

Insulation is hugely important and the right insulation for your home can save you a lot of money in the long run with retaining heat. Read about the four types of insulation for your home here.

4 Types of Insulation for Your House (Pros & Cons) (1)

Installing an insulation system can drastically reduce energy consumption in your house. This is the best way to keep your house cool in the summers while keeping it warm during the winters.

However, most of the modern homes are designed to be energy efficient themselves, and there is no point in installing the system then. Therefore, before installing an insulation system in your house, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Whether or not your house needs insulation?
  2. If you already have an insulation system installed, what type it is?
  3. How much thickness or depth of the insulation your house has?

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(Video) 6 Common Types of Insulation on the Market

Heat Loss Statistics

  • On average, heating and cooling comprise 54% of a home’s annual utility bills.
  • Wall insulation can reduce a home’s heat loss by 67%, while attic insulation can lead to a 40% decrease in heating and cooling costs.
  • 10% of your home heating bill costs stem from uninsulated floors.
  • Insulating basement walls or slab foundation can reduce heating costs by10% to 20%.
  • A home that is well insulated against heat loss can recoup the costs of implementing insulation within 5 to 6 years from the resultant energy savings, also you can find out more about Cavitech-UK here.

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Where does heat loss happen the most in your home?

  • 26% of heat loss is via the roof.
  • 33% of heat loss happens through the walls.
  • 8% of heat loss is through the floor.
  • 3% of heat loss is through gaps in or around the door.
  • 18% through gaps in and around windows.
  • 12% via ventilation & draughts.

4 Types of Insulation

There are 4 common types of insulation that can alter the heat inside your house depending on the weather conditions outside. They are as follows:

1. Spray Foam Insulation

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This kind of insulation is done with aid of spray holders. Foam is sprayed from the containers in specific places of the house. The best places to install this kind of installation are new wall spaces, unfinished attics or existing walls. Although the foam is sprayed using spray holders, they can also be applied in large quantities, using the foamed-in-place method.

However, it should be kept in mind that this kind of insulation is much more expensive when compared to fiberglass insulation. In addition, it can also be a messy process. Also, the foam is made up of chemicals, which if inhaled can cause respiratory problems. Therefore, it is always advised to hire a handyman experienced in this task because you should make sure that the foam spread should be equal in every place.

(Video) Which Insulation is Best?!

2. Fiberglass Insulation

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This is the commonest form of insulation. They are available in either loose fill or batts. The best part of insulating your house this way is that this is way cheap and is also the easiest way to do insulation for your home. Also, fiberglass insulation does not let your house get damaged from damp. This is non-flammable and thus it protects your house. All these characteristics make it preferable for householders to use this type of insulation for their homes.

Fiberglass insulation is done mainly between joists, beams, and studs.

However, you should be careful while installing this kind of insulation for your home because they can affect your lungs and skin. The best idea is to stay away from the place during installation. This material, unless sealed with plastic, must have a vapor barrier to protect the material from moisture. In addition, fiberglass tends to sag over time, and therefore should be re-installed from time to time.

3. Mineral Wool Insulation

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Mineral wool insulation is also known as rock wool insulation. This is almost similar to fiberglass insulation. Mineral wool is easy to install. They come in loose fills, which can be poured directly from bags or be blown to a certain area. The best part of this kind of insulation is that it can tolerate higher temperatures, as in up to 1000oC than the other forms of insulation. The house also remains soundproof when insulated with this material.

(Video) Types of attic insulation-Pros and Cons

However, it is much more expensive when compared to fiberglass insulation and is also not found in the market commonly. One should also wear protective gear while installing it because the slivers in the loose fill are tiny enough to get into your nose and can also cause cancer in the lungs.

4. Cellulose Insulation

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If you are looking for some organic way to insulate your home, cellulose insulation will work best for you. This type of insulation is mainly made from recycled paper, mainly newspapers and sometimes cardboards and other kinds of papers, and comes in loose fills. Cellulose insulation materials are treated with chemicals to make them better in protecting the home from moisture, heat, and pests.

However, it should be remembered that as this kind of insulation absorbs moisture, they can get damaged with time. Therefore, experts advise that you should re-install it every five years. In addition, the overall installation costs for cellulose insulation for your home will be much higher as compared to the conventional fiberglass insulation option. Also, when installed, this kind of insulation is likely to create a lot of dust. Both in the case of dry or wet blown cellulose, it is important that there is a vapor barrier.

Insulation Pricing

Generally, insulation installation costs depend on the R-value of the material. It also depends on the material itself and how lasting it is. For example, if you plan to use fiberglass for insulating your home, it is much cheaper an option than the others.

  1. Cellulose:
    • Loose-Fill: $0.50 to $1 per square foot
    • Damp-Spray: $0.60 to $1.80 per square foot
    • Dense-Packed: $2 to $2.25 per square foot
  2. Fiberglass:
    • Batts: $0.50 to $1 per square foot
    • Blown-in: $0.50 to $1 per square foot
  3. Foam:
    • Open-Cell: $0.44 to $0.65 per square foot
    • Close-Cell: $1 to $1.50 per square foot
  4. Mineral Wool:
    • $0.77 per square foot

What is the best insulation?

One way to assess what is the best insulation is by a measurement called an R-value. R-value is a measurement based on a material’s ability to resist heat flow. The higher the R-value, the better that material is for insulation.

(Video) Polystyrene pros and cons - House insulation

Below is a chart and details setting out the different insulating materials and associated R-value.

  • Polyisocyanurate: 7.2 R-value
  • Polyurethane: 6.25 R-value
  • Extruded Polystyrene: 5 R-value
  • Expanded Polystyrene: 4 R-value
  • Rigid Fibreglass: 4 R-value
  • Fibreglass/Rock Wool Batt: 3.14-4.3 R-value
  • Cellulose Blown: 3.3-3.7
  • Fibreglass Blown: 1.05 to 3.7 R-value

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How to Reduce Heat Loss

  • Insulation: Insulate your walls and roof well.
  • Chimneys: A removable chimney ballon can prevent excess heat from escaping when you don’t have a fire. If you never use the chimney, get it capped.
  • Windows: Put draughtproofing strips around the windows to prevent heat escaping through thin gaps. New windows can help tremendously.
  • Doors: Draughtproofing strips are also good around doorframes internally and externally.
  • Radiators: If you have cold spots on your radiators, have them bled so that trapped air is released and your heating system is optimised. Also, position a shelf just above your radiators so that heat is thrown forward into the room.
  • Curtains: Heavy-duty curtains are good at keeping heat within a room.

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Author Bio: Ralph Hughes is an interior designer, architect, builder and the founder of Hughes Design and Construction Inc, Inc located in Arkansas. A graduate of the University Of Arkansas School Of Engineering, Ralph enjoys assisting in the design of your project from conception to completion.

Graphics provided by Senator Windows.

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When it comes to insulating your home, which type makes the most sense for your home? Here are the 5 best insulation options with their pros and cons.

Before you consider the kind of insulation, you’ll want to make sure you know how much insulation you’ll need, and it’s best to start by determining what R-value is recommended for your area.. If you need to insulate around pipes and wires, blown-in insulation might be best.. Con: Fiberglass blankets and batts have an R-value between R-2.9 and R-3.8 per inch of thickness, so you may need to add 10-12 inches of insulation to achieve the right amount of insulation.. Pro: Insulated concrete blocks take advantage of building materials used in creating the foundation to add an extra layer of insulation to the home.. Con: Insulated concrete blocks don’t actually improve insulation that much because heat can still pass through the un-insulated concrete.. For maximum insulation, you should still install insulation over the surface of the blocks either on the exterior or interior of the foundation walls.. Loose-Fill and Blown-In Insulation – This type of insulation is made up of small particles of fiber, foam, or other materials.. Sprayed-Foam and Foamed-in-Place Insulation – Liquid foam insulation is sprayed where it is needed, then hardens into an effective insulation material.. Pro: Sprayed foam insulation can be twice as insulating as batt insulation.. Before you buy any insulation, get an energy audit to determine what kind of insulation you need where, and at what R-Value.

This article will outline the 4 types of attic insulation you can pick from, plus dive into the pros and cons of each.

The first and most common type of attic insulation is fiberglass batt insulation.. The Advantages of Fiberglass Batt Insulation Why is fiberglass batt insulation so popular?. The Disadvantages of Fiberglass Batt Insulation While fiberglass batt insulation has many advantages, it also has its downsides:. The Advantages of Blown-In Fiberglass Insulation Blown-in fiberglass is a good choice for your attic insulation.. The Disadvantages of Blown-In Fiberglass Insulation The advantages of blown-in fiberglass insulation are compelling.. Should the insulation get damp, removing the insulation isn’t as easy as removing fiberglass batts.. The Advantages of Blown-In Cellulose Insulation Is blown-in cellulose insulation worth it?. Blown-in cellulose insulation has an R-Value that is 23 percent higher than fiberglass batts.. The Disadvantages of Blown-In Cellulose Insulation What are the cons of installing blown-in cellulose insulation in your attic?. The final type of attic insulation is spray foam insulation.. Unlike all the other types of attic insulation, spray foam insulation is the only type to come as a liquid.. The Advantages of Spray Foam Insulation Spray foam insulation is increasing in popularity.. The Disadvantages of Spray Foam Insulation Finally, what are the disadvantages of spray foam insulation?. The upfront payment for spray foam insulation is higher than the other types of attic insulation on our list.

Posted by Elizabeth Ireland

The first and most common type of attic insulation is fiberglass batt insulation.. The Advantages of Fiberglass Batt Insulation Why is fiberglass batt insulation so popular?. The Disadvantages of Fiberglass Batt Insulation While fiberglass batt insulation has many advantages, it also has its downsides:. The Advantages of Blown-In Fiberglass Insulation Blown-in fiberglass is a good choice for your attic insulation.. The Disadvantages of Blown-In Fiberglass Insulation The advantages of blown-in fiberglass insulation are compelling.. The Advantages of Blown-In Cellulose Insulation Is blown-in cellulose insulation worth it?. The Disadvantages of Blown-In Cellulose Insulation What are the cons of installing blown-in cellulose insulation in your attic?. The final type of attic insulation is spray foam insulation.. Unlike all the other types of attic insulation, spray foam insulation is the only type to come as a liquid.. The Advantages of Spray Foam Insulation Spray foam insulation is increasing in popularity.. The Disadvantages of Spray Foam Insulation Finally, what are the disadvantages of spray foam insulation?. The upfront payment for spray foam insulation is higher than the other types of attic insulation on our list.

Are you looking for attic insulation? There are many different types of attic insulation, each with its own set of pros and cons.

However, they may not provide as much insulation as other types of insulation and can settle over time, leaving gaps that allow heat to escape.. However, they may not provide as much insulation as other types of insulation.. Loose-fill fiberglass is effective insulation, but it can be difficult to install and may settle over time, leaving gaps for heat to escape.. If you are looking for insulation that effectively insulates your attic space, loose-fill fiberglass may be a good option.. Cellulose insulation is an environmentally friendly option, but it can be difficult to install and may settle over time, leaving gaps for heat to escape.. Cellulose insulation is installed by blowing it into attic spaces through a hole in the attic floor.. Rigid foam board insulation is an effective way to insulate your attic, but it can be more expensive than other types of insulation.. Radiant barrier insulation is an effective way to insulate your attic, but it can be more expensive than other types of insulation.. The R-value of radiant barrier insulation is about R-0.15, which is lower than other types of attic insulation.

External wall insulation offers a way to make homes with solid walls more thermally efficient. However, it needs careful consideration before installing, says expert Tim Pullen

External wall insulation is usually defined as a layer of insulation that's fixed to an existing wall.. This method is often required for insulating walls on solid wall properties where there's no option for cavity wall insulation; however, there are other situations where it's the appropriate course of action.. While adding insulation should feel like a no-brainer to improve the thermal efficiency of your home, no form of wall insulation, external wall insulation included, is without some form of challenge — often centred around how you home deals with moisture.. It reduces heat loss and energy bills Fewer draughts and increased the sense of comfort It does not disrupt the house while being installed This type of insulation does not reduce internal floor area It allows walls to contribute to thermal mass (the ‘tea cosy’ effect) It improves not only weatherproofing, but sound resistance too It increases the life of the wall It reduces condensation on internal walls. Under Building Regulations , if 25 per cent or more of a wall is to be insulated externally, it is typically necessary to bring the entire wall up to current standards — which makes sense in that, if you’re going to go to the efforts and expense of insulating externally, then you may as well do it well.. When it comes to using external wall insulation to insulate a solid wall, you'll be looking at the following figures:. Prior to the widespread introduction of the cavity wall, the housebuilder generally had a choice to build either an impermeable wall that stops moisture penetration to both surfaces, or to build a breathing wall that allows moisture to penetrate (to a degree) and be evaporated away.. The cavity wall by comparison is an impermeable wall in that the cavity is intended to form a ‘barrier’ to prevent moisture penetration; any rainwater entering the wall is evaporated away by air movement in the cavity.. Ideally the dew point will occur either on the external surface of the wall, where moisture can evaporate away, or in the ventilated cavity (if the wall has a cavity), where the same thing happens.. In this case a brick wall is not a breathable wall and therefore any of the rigid foam insulations will suit.. As with stone walls, the insulation can be mechanically fixed to the wall and clad with render, timber, etc.. In this case, external insulation with a weatherproof render will prevent the rainwater entering the wall and subsequently makes cavity-fill insulation a useful thermal barrier.. The cavity will typically be 50mm wide; add 20mm external insulation, in the same way as for solid walls, and the wall will achieve a good U value.. Jablite’s EPS (expanded polystyrene) Dynamic External product for retrofit external wall insulation applications (Image credit: Jablite) External insulation will add thickness to the wall, most evident at the reveals and eaves.

There are many different types of insulation out there and most of us know very little about them. Here are some of the most common types of insulation that you might come across...

Image Credit: AKuptsova, PixabayOut of all insulation options out there, roll insulation is easily one of the most common.. If you have an older home, you’ll likely find this type of roll insulation already installed.. However, it is a common option for new homes, as well.. Widely available Variety of different materials Easy to install. Image Credit: Radovan1, ShutterstockAs the name suggests, this type of insulation comes in the form of a sturdy board.. You can find foam board with up to a 6.8 R-value.. Very high R-value Reduced heat conduction Sturdy Water-resistant Permeable to water vapor. Image Credit: Radovan1, ShutterstockWhile not as common as other options, insulated concrete forms are an insulation option in some areas.. This type of insulation does take more work, and homes typically have to be built with it from the get-go.. You can find options up to about 6.5, and you can use these insulated walls in many different climates.. High R-value Easy to install and use Moisture-resistant. Because of the advanced installation techniques necessary, this insulation requires professional installation.. Very effective Can fit in small spaces Reduces noise levels Resistant to vapor. Not as effective Usually needs to be combined with other insulation types. Some types of insulation can only be installed professionally, while others are suitable DIY options.

Insulation is one of the primary barriers in the thermal envelope and foam insulation has recently seen a surge in homeowner interest. It’s easy to …

The question is, is foam insulation worth it and what are the pros and cons of choosing foam insulation?. How long you will live in the house Type, age, and efficiency of your central air and heating You do not have open combustion appliances or furnace You understand the health concerns over foam spray insulation You have the additional money required for the investment. Deciding on Spray Foam insulation in your home is a big investment and so it is a big decision.. The ultimate benefit of spray foam insulation is that it provides a more energy efficient thermal envelope .. Spray foam insulation provides a superior R-value per inch compared to traditional rolled or blown in insulation.. According to diffen.com , spray foam insulation provides an R-value of 6 for every inch of insulation installed.. Because it is sprayed on wet and expands as it drys, spray foam insulation has the added benefit of expanding into cracks and sealing air leaks in the thermal envelope, Energy Star reports that 25-40% of conditioned heating and cooling costs are lost through air leaks in the average home.. When considering spray foam insulation for my own home that I was building, I learned that the HVAC system that I was planning to install would not be appropriate.. Because of the extreme air-sealing of the thermal envelope resulting from a spray foam insulated house, adjustment to the sizing and type of central air and heating unit is needed.. At the same time, there are thousands of homeowners enjoying the benefits of energy efficiency that spray foam insulation provides.. Spray foam insulation costs more than traditional insulation approaches such as fiberglass and cellulose.. Making the right decision on spray foam insulation requires consideration of the facts and an understanding of the benefits and concerns.

Cellulose insulation is a favorite of the green home building movement. Insulation is a recycled insulation which makes it a very popular material to insulate buildings. It is made from newspaper which is always in ample supply. There are several different ways that the newspaper is processed. In one process the newspaper is cut with …

Insulation is a recycled insulation which makes it a very popular material to insulate buildings.. Once the newspaper has been reduced to fibers a mold inhibiting chemical and a fire retardant chemical is mixed with the fibers.. This requires quite a bit of energy and the use of harsh chemicals that can generate pollution.. When you compare cellulose insulation manufacturing requirements to fiberglass requirements it is easy to see why green builders choose cellulose.. Fiberglass manufacturing is an intricate process that requires a large space to manufacture which equates in many cases long distance deliveries.. Boron is a key chemical that is used in the processing of cellulose insulation (used to make Boric acid) and the Boron reserves are low.. At the current rate of demand it is estimated that the three of these mines can only supply enough Boron for the next 50 years.. How safe is cellulose insulation?. There are a few chemicals that are used in the process that are fire retardants that are also known carcinogens.

Learn which Insulation materials are most suited to which Home application, because Green Building materials & especially insulation are not created equal !

Researchers at Washington State University have developed a rigid cellulose foam insulation panel that one day we hope will replace plastics based foam as a standard building insulation.. And better still is when the natural alternative for these plastic based rigid foam insulation boards is a naturally derived cellulose high-performance panel with a higher R-value than current rigid insulation panels such as EPS, XPS and Styrofoam.. Rock wool rigid board insulation © Ecohome Recycled Content : there is a minimum of 75% industrial waste in stone wool insulation, often as high as 90%.. Hemp batt insulation © Nature Fibres Recycled content: Hemp is a natural and renewable material, making hemp batt insulation (and hemp boards) a very sustainable building material.. Hemp batts handle moisture quite well, and can safely absorb moisture contained in framing materials making it a durable form of batt insulation.. Straw bale house Recycled Content : Straw bale walls are the used stalks of grains, so they are generally 100% recycled and act as carbon storage so this will significantly reduce the overall ecological impact of your home.. Manufacturers of XPS and EPS claim both products can be recycled, but a complete life cycle analysis shows EPS having a better overall environmental impact when compared to XPS, as EPS can be recycled in many more ways at the end of its usefulness.. Expanded polystyrene foam insulation on interior of a foundation wall in the crawlspace © Ecohome Recycled content : Not very high, (though it could and should be, but it isn't commercially viable.). Notes : EPS is the only commercially available foam insulation panel that is at all vapour permeable, which can be an advantage in some applications, as can those that are vapour impermeable.. This is significantly lower than other types of foam, so we recommend it as the preferred choice of foam whenever foam insulation is the best option possible for the application.. Excellent as a rigid foam insulation board for below grade applications and insulated slab forming , both inside and out.. Even Treehugger recently admitted that in certain applications, such as remedial wall insulation, EPS foam insulation needs to "come out of the shadows" of being lumped in with Styrofoam as it makes absolutely the best sense per $ and environmentally for continuous and resistant insulation in buildings.

The question is which type of insulation material is best - and what are the benefits of using certain types over others?

Wool insulation is made from sheep wool fibres that are either mechanically held together or bonded to form insulating batts and rolls.. Wool insulation can be cut to size and used in the same way as other forms of insulation.. Some manufacturers offer 100 per cent sheep’s wool insulation while others provide wool-rich insulation (75 per cent wool) mixed with recycled polyester.. Sheep’s wool uses a fraction of the energy used to produce man-made insulating materials.. Sheep’s wool has a value of 6 MJ/kg compared to 101 for Polyurethane foam and 26 for glass mineral wool, according to an analysis by GreenSpec.. Manufacturers claim wool is one of the few insulation materials that is breathable - naturally absorbing and releasing moisture.. Whereas a full-face mask, goggles and gloves are required when handling glass wool or rock wool insulation.. According to an analysis by GreenSpec, sheep’s wool insulation outperforms plastic and mineral wool – 1800 J/Kg.K for sheep’s wool compared to only 1030 for glass mineral wool and 1300 for expanded polystyrene (EPS), for example.. According to GreenSpec, plastic insulation has about twice the thermal resistance of sheep’s wool insulation – an R value of 5 per 100mm m2K/W for phenolic foam and 4.5 for polyurethane foam, for example, compared to 2.5 per 100mm m2K/W for sheep wool.. Rock mineral wool and glass mineral wool are also 0.3 points higher, so wool doesn’t offer the best thermal qualities overall.

There are two common types of fiberglass insulation: batts and loose-fill. However, the cost and effectiveness of the insulation varies depending on the type. 

There are two common types of fiberglass insulation: batts and loose-fill.. However, the cost and effectiveness of the insulation vary depending on the type of fiberglass insulation you choose.. Additionally, it is still reasonably effective at insulating your home.. One of the benefits of batts fiberglass insulation is its ability to be layered to create a higher R-value.. Typically, loose-fill insulation is most effective in attics; however, homeowners can also blow it into walls.. Loose-fill in an attic has an R-value of 2.2 to 4.3 per inch of thickness.. There is a third type of fiberglass insulation, but this type has a specialized use.. Contractors do not install it in the walls or attics of a home.. It is much cheaper than other types of insulation.. In addition to being cost-friendly, fiberglass insulation has a reasonably long lifespan, typically around 50 years.. Other common types of insulation only have a lifespan of maybe 10-30 years.. Having a 50-year lifespan is a huge benefit, especially when combined with the cost-effectiveness of fiberglass insulation.. Whether it is batt style or loose-fill, manufacturers use recycled materials to make the insulation.. Therefore, adding a vapor barrier will be an additional cost on top of the insulation installation price.

Posted by Elizabeth Ireland Air Conditioning Blog When you turn on your heating, you want it to stay inside your home. Powering up the heating causes the heat to rise directly up into your attic. It’s then up to your attic insulation to do its job and block the heat from escaping. Poor attic insulation […]

Which attic insulation is best?. The first and most common type of attic insulation is fiberglass batt insulation.. Blown-in fiberglass uses the same base material (fiberglass), but it doesn’t require the vapor.. Using blown-in fiberglass insulation improves the air quality in your home due to not needing the vapor.. The Disadvantages of Blown-In Fiberglass Insulation The advantages of blown-in fiberglass insulation are compelling.. Blown-in cellulose insulation has an R-Value that is 23 percent higher than fiberglass batts.. The Disadvantages of Blown-In Cellulose Insulation What are the cons of installing blown-in cellulose insulation in your attic?. If there are any gaps or holes after being installed, the spray foam can create or add to water damage.

Rigid foam board insulation is an insulation that could benefit your home. It has particular uses and is an efficient insulation solution for your home. 

Rigid foam board insulation is one of a large number of types of insulation that could benefit your home.. Rigid foam board insulation has enormous benefits, including high R-values, continuous insulation wrapping your home, and moisture control.. This article will discuss the different types of rigid foam board insulation and the benefits and challenges of this type of insulation.. There are three types of rigid foam board insulation.. Extruded polystyrene rigid foam board insulation is likely the type of foam board insulation you would recognize.. Extruded polystyrene foam board is the most recognizable of the types of rigid foam board insulation and the most common for use in walls and below-grade locations.. The most common application for polyisocyanurate rigid foam board insulation is roofing because it has an R-value of 5.8 per inch, which is relatively high for home insulation.. However, fiberglass or plastic sheathing options help create a vapor barrier for this type of rigid foam board insulation.. There are several pros of foam board insulation that differentiate it from other standard insulation options.. The high R-value means homeowners can use rigid foam board insulation in nearly any climate.. Because contractors install rigid foam board insulation on the structure’s exterior, it inherently prevents thermal bridging from occurring.. While not all three types of rigid foam board insulation can act as a vapor barrier, they all help control moisture .. Without proper installation, the benefits of rigid foam board insulation are minimal.. In addition, there are code restrictions on the installation and sealing of rigid foam board insulation.

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