The answer to that question depends on the kind of insulation and where it is installed in your home. Poorly installed insulation won’t help with your energy bills at all, so you want to be sure it’s done right, particularly if you are building your own home. If you are living in a home built by someone else, it might not hurt to check a hidden section of ceiling, flooring and wall in your home to find out what kind of insulation is there. An older home may actually benefit from being re-insulated, depending on the material used when it was first built.
Thickness of insulation in exterior walls and ceilings is also something to check for. You want insulation that traps warm air and keeps it there. Too thick, and there’s nowhere for air to go. Too thin, and warm air will not be adequately trapped. A professional can definitely assist with this assessment.
One of the areas of your home that can benefit from insulation, is your floor. Flooring over basements, crawl spaces, garages or open air underneath your home in some fashion, can be a significant source of heat loss. Construction material companies are now offering various answers to this issue. Radiant Flooring for example, offers electric and hydronic under-floor heating options. Other companies offer various forms of under-floor insulation such as those listed under floor insulation from Wickes.
Incidentally, Wickes offers under-floor heating options as well. But as you can see, options for reducing your energy bill in this fashion are thankfully available.
Some of those options include:
- Thermal insulation foil
- Polystyrene foam
- Celotex insulation boards
- Heavy density as well as general purpose insulation
- Astrofab for placing under hydronic heated flooring systems.
Installing floor insulation is a major renovation task that can have it’s hidden costs, required expertise, and dangers. Complications can arise if the flooring is over a narrow crawlspace for example. This means more choices need to be made.
- Do you have the expertise to do this job on your own?
- Do you have the protective gear and tools to get the job done safely?
- What is underneath the existing flooring?
- What kind of flooring insulation fits both your budget and your needs?
- Do you need to hire a professional to do this job for you?
If you need to hire a professional, make sure they have been in the insulation business for awhile with excellent customer reviews and feedback. There’s nothing worse than bringing in a contractor that does a shoddy job. Make sure you don’t end up paying for the job twice. Do your homework.
If you plan on doing this yourself, you must remember to take safety precautions. Many types of insulation are made from fiberglass, so dress in long sleeves, gloves, and protective eyewear.
Once you have installed your floor insulation, estimates generally say that you can expect a 33% savings in your energy bill that winter. That’s nothing to sneeze at. If you are serious about reducing your energy bill, take a serious look at your flooring. There may be savings hidden there you hadn’t considered before.