Updated on December 5, 2022
A home’s energy efficiency is dependent on how well its insulation prevents cold or warm air from escaping or entering the home throughout the seasons. For many Arkansas homeowners, their insulation in the attic is insufficient, damaged or old. During the winter, warm air escapes through air leaks and gaps in insulation while cold air easily enters the home, making the HVAC system work overtime to keep the home’s inhabitants comfortable. This makes it very difficult for homeowners to maintain a suitable inside temperature throughout the year and keep their energy bills manageable.
High energy bills and drafty rooms are telltale signs that you may need new insulation installed in your home. Proper insulation not only creates a more energy efficient home but can lower your energy bills up to 15%.
After making the decision to install new insulation, many homeowners wonder what to do with their old insulation: should it stay, or should it go?
Can You Add New Insulation Over Old Insulation?
The short answer is yes, you can add new insulation over existing insulation. Energy Star explains things more thoroughly, with a few conditions: “Unless your old insulation is wet, moldy, smelly, or contains animal waste, contractors can just add new insulation on top. It is usually not necessary to remove existing insulation.”
Before taking a glance at your existing insulation and assuming it is ok, it is important to have a professional contractor visit your home and examine it thoroughly. Insulation that feels dry now, may have been wet previously. Water from a leaky window or pipe may have dampened your insulation which could lead to mold, mildew, insects, and the rotting of your ceiling or roof rafters. Before installing insulation, it is important to rectify any water issues, such as a burst or dripping pipe or leaky window or roof.
Here are some other considerations to ponder before adding new insulation on top of existing insulation:
- Very old, damaged insulation that is not performing well should be removed and replaced.
- Your current insulation could be covering up other hidden issues, keeping your home from being energy efficient, such as air leaks around your windows and ventilation issues in the attic. To maximize your home’s energy efficiency, it is important to undergo air sealing of your attic before having insulation added.
- Verify that your old insulation does not contain asbestos.
Choosing the Right Insulation
Whether you decide to remove your old insulation or add a layer of new insulation on top, you may wonder which insulating material is best for your project.
There are a number of quality insulations to choose from including spray foam, fiberglass or cellulose. If you are adding to your existing insulation, you may elect to install a different type of insulation on top of your previous insulation. Consider these factors when choosing the best one for your home:
- Energy efficiency
- R-values (insulating power)
- Your budget
- Durability of the material
- Eco-friendliness of the material
Trust the Professionals
Deciding the best way to fit your home with proper insulation and what to do with the old insulation can be stressful. Since 2001, our professionally trained team at G&S Insulating has been providing our Arkansas community with the expert service and insulation guidance they need to make confident insulating decisions. We are here to answer your questions and walk you through every step of the insulation process. A member of our team will thoroughly inspect your current insulation and share our findings so you can make an informed and educated decision regarding your home’s insulation needs. Contact us today to schedule your home visit and free estimate.