Ecofriendly Cool: Insulate With Wool, Cork, Old Denim and More
There are few alternatives to this fiberglass and foam products used to insulate roofs and walls until relatively recently. Most of us leave the somewhat dull topic of insulation to builders or contractors anyway — after all, you barely buy insulation for appearances.
But the topic of insulation is warming up, both for environmentalists and homeowners. Have a peek at some of the best ecofriendly insulation options — could one work for your home?
Bud Bartley Custom Homes
The Fundamentals. Foam and fiberglass are the most common kinds of insulation now. Foam products no longer utilize harmful chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), but they do utilize hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) — better compared to CFCs but still damaging to the ozone layer.
Engineered production uses 20 to 25 percent recovered glass cullet, whilst mineral wool utilizes 75 percent recovered slag. But, both still have controversial health risks, so that they will need to be carefully and expertly handled.
Fiber insulation materials (like cellulose, fiberglass, mineral wool and cotton) tend to get a lower environmental impact compared to foam-plastic insulation materials, but they don’t have as high a per-inch R-value (an amount of thermal resistance).
kimberly peck architect
Factors. Fixing your home’s insulation with a more ecofriendly substance is worthwhile only when it betters your home’s energy efficiency. Do your research to make sure your home has the highest R-value for your specific ailments.
The fiberglass windows in this eco-friendly project were selected due to their very high R-value.
24-Inch SheepRoll Natural Wool Insulation Roll – $57.60
Option Insulation Types
Wool. Natural, renewable and sustainable sheep’s wool insulation requires a fraction of the power to produce compared to its engineered counterparts.
Unlike lace, wool is safe to handle and easy to install. Since wool fibers are breathable, they can absorb and release moisture without reducing thermal performance, unlike fiberglass. Wool has an R-value of about 3.5 to 3.8 per inch of material thickness (about 0.3 to 0.6 points higher than most fiberglass insulation).
Bonus: Sheep’s wool is noncombustible, meaning it can help slow the progress of a fire in a home.
UltraTouch Denim Insulation
Cotton. Many forms of cotton insulation today are created out of recycled blue jeans. Unlike fiberglass, this type of insulation is formaldehyde free. And according to Build It Green, it delivers exactly the exact same insulation performance as fiberglass.
Like cotton, wool insulation is much safer to handle than fiberglass and offers superior acoustic qualities also. The downside is that it costs about twice as much as fiberglass. But, its sturdiness and long life could make it worth the cost.
Kessick Wine Cellars
Cork. Most of us are knowledgeable about cork on walls and floors, but do you realize this elastic material may be used for insulation, also? Cork granules are sold in bags, which makes them great for awkward interruptions or strange joist spacing. Since they’re loose and not packed tight, the granules usually do not be the ideal option for drafty distances, where they can blow around.
A cellar is a fantastic spot for cork insulation. This specific wine storage cellar has bamboo floor to aid with climate management.
Discover the Unstoppable Benefits of Cork for the House
Supaloft Green Recycled Polyester Insulation
Recycled plastic. Plastic bottles today can help reduce our electricity bills. Supaloft Green is a itch-free sustainable insulation quilt; 90 percent of it is constructed of recycled plastic bottles. This product is produced in the uk, but there may be a similar product or neighborhood supplier near you.
A Tough Look in Recycled Plastic for the House
Living roof. Whenever it’s not yet a replacement for most traditional types of insulation, a living roof can reduce indoor noise up to 40 decibels. It can reduce indoor summertime temperatures by 6 to 8 percent, cutting down on ac costs.
It offers no insulation benefits in wet weather, but the plant helps trap blowing snow for insulation benefits. Additionally, it protects your roof, extending its life expectancy. Plus, it’s much better to look at than asphalt!