What if we told you there is a way to drastically decrease your energy loss and ultimately put money back in your pocket? All you have to do is, look up. Your attic could be needing some serious attention.
It is common knowledge that warm air rises towards the top part of a building. This creates a pressure gradient within the structure. A higher pressure exists near the uppermost part of a building while a lower pressure resides near the bottom. Ultimately, the low pressure near the foundation will pull cool air into the building while the high pressure at the uppermost part of the building drives warm air out through any crevice it can find.
No wonder your energy bill is literally THROUGH THE ROOF!
You can see why it is so important to have a properly insulated attic. In order for an attic to perform at its best, it must function as a system. Three main areas must work together to ensure peak performance:
Frequently, the ceiling bypasses are not sealed correctly rendering the attic insulation ineffective. Sealing bypasses can be anything from an interior wall extending into the attic, ducting, bathroom fans, plumb vents, lights, and wires. Many times, these bypasses are not insulated at all, leaving the home vulnerable to serious energy loss.
Insulation is naturally resistant to conductive heat flow. Depending on the density, thickness, and type of insulation, the level of resistance, or R-value, varies. A higher R-value will be more effective against heat trying to escape. Your geographic location helps to determine how much insulation you need. Again, the more insulation used, the higher the R-value.
An effective ventilation system helps keep your attic at a temperature which allows for best performance. Keeping attic temperatures down in the summer while also keeping the attics dry in the winter is essential. This allows for a prolonged life of materials and structures as well as lower energy bills
All three of the systems mentioned above must work together in order for a home to function at its best. Having a new home does NOT guarantee this.
Luckily, CBS has ensured peak attic performance in more than 120 townhome association’s in order to eradicate heat loss due to incorrectly insulated ceiling bypasses. Our experienced engineers understand that insulating an attic is irrelevant if the bypasses have not been sealed properly. Our team addresses the attic as a whole structure, not just as individual parts, in order to find the root of the problem and act accordingly.
Be aware! If you have/are experiencing any of the following, your attic may need some attention:
A) Ice dams
- When heat escapes through poorly insulated areas, the attic is warmed up and melts snow on your roof. This melting snow migrates to the edge of the roof where it freezes and continues to build up and hold water in the form of a dam. This is a serious issue that can lead to further problems such as severe water damage.
For more information on ice dams, check out a previous blog: Ice Dams vs. Natural Ice Build-up
- As we touched upon earlier, warm air rises and will try to escape out of any open channel it can find in your attic. An open bypass is a great vessel for this air to escape. As the escaping warm air meets the cool air from outside, condensation is formed. This condensation, along with other forms of moisture intrusion, leave your home very susceptible to mold. This mold will be apparent not only within the attic, but on walls and other areas of the home. Think of the health implications this proposes.
C) Nail pops on roof
- The hygroscopic nature of plywood or OSB (oriented strand board) contributes greatly to the nail pop issue. Plywood is made from several layers of veneer held together by glue. During periods of drastic temperature differences (40-50 degrees F difference) between the attic and exterior, expansion and contraction between the different layers of veneer (or within OSB) occurs. What do you think happens to the wood when this takes place? Here’s a hint, we have all experienced this at one point or another. Yes, the wood literally becomes unglued! You can see why this is a problem. The nails are slowly and forcefully pushed upwards due to the conflicting movement (“ungluing”) of the wood. This phenomena transpires more frequently as moisture content in the attic increases, primarily from unsealed bypasses.
Nail pops must be taken care of immediately in order to prevent moisture intrusion, however, if your attic is not insulated properly, they will continue to occur. If you are interested in prolonging the life of your roof, this issue must be acknowledged and corrected.
D) High energy bills
- Your energy bills could be high because your attic is not sealed and insulated properly. Remember, heat rises and will escape out of any area it can find. If measures are not taken to keep heat within the home, such as sealing bypasses, your hard earned money is being lost to the atmosphere.
Want to learn more about energy savings? Check out this blog: Energy Savings
If you have noticed any of the above issues, it is time to call CBS. Using our expert knowledge to best assess your needs, the root of the issue will be determined and corrected. Don’t waste time and money addressing symptoms that come from a poorly insulated attic when the real problems are still lurking within. Imagine the peace of mind and money saved by having a smaller energy bill, the lifetime of your roof extended by 15 years, prevention of water damage, and a healthy family. Why not call CBS to take care of the real problem once and for all?