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How To Tell If Your Attic Needs More Insulation

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Adding new insulation to your attic is one of the least expensive things you can do to increase your home's fuel efficiency. Just that one extra layer can reduce your heating and cooling bills by up to 20 percent, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA.)  Making sure that you have adequate insulation also reduces condensation and helps prevent termites from setting up housekeeping in your home. 

Signs that you need an extra layer of attic insulation

1. The snow melts off the top of your house ... and it's still below freezing. One easy way to tell if you need more insulation in your attic is to look outside on a snowy day. If the temperature is still below freezing, but your roof is snow-free, then heated air is escaping from the under the eaves and you need more insulation.

2. Your insulation doesn't rise above the ceiling joists. If you look across the floor of your attic and can still see the ceiling joists, then you likely need more insulation, according to EnergyStar. Ideally, the insulation should completely cover the ceiling joists.

3. You use your attic for storage. Despite the fact that your parents and grandparents and their parents all used their attics for storage, this practice encourages energy waste. When you use your attic to stow away your Christmas decorations, old clothes and other items you can't bear to part with, you can't get enough insulation under the plywood floor to maximize energy efficiency.

4. Your insulation doesn't reach the edges of your attic. Another way to check if you have enough insulation is to peek in your attic. If the insulation doesn't go all the way to the edge of your attic, you need to add another layer.

5. Have an energy assessment. Many heating and cooling contractors will come out to your home and conduct an energy assessment either for free or for a nominal fee. This thorough check will not only tell you whether you need additional insulation, but also give you a written report on all of the other places your home is losing energy along with proposed solutions.

While adding more insulation to your attic isn't the right answer for every homeowner, such a move will likely save you on your heating and cooling bills while conserving precious natural resources. Isn't that a good enough reason to go check your attic? Contact an insulation installation company, such as Kirkland's Pest Control, for more information.