If your utility bills are high and your home seems to be running a fever, you may be surprised to learn that your attic may be “patient zero” and the source of the problem. Though many homeowners don’t give a lot of thought to their attics, these spaces can raise your energy bill up to 20 percent when they become excessively hot. To bring down the temperature in your attic and the rest of your home, make sure that your attic is equipped with adequate ventilation and insulation.
What is the function of attic ventilation and insulation?
Your attic’s ventilation and insulation are crucial to making sure that your air conditioner is able to run both efficiently and effectively. You may not realize it, but your attic is capable of reaching temperatures up to 150 degrees as heat rises from your home and radiates downward from the sun-heated roof. When your attic lacks proper ventilation, this heat will continue to build up until it begins to move down through your ceilings to reenter your house. It’s the job of your insulation to act as a barrier between your living spaces.
How can I remedy inadequate ventilation and insulation?
When unsure whether or not your attic is ventilated enough, take a look at your roof’s shingles. A common problem with overly hot attics is that they cause asphalt shingles to curl up on the ends. You should also check your attic’s vents for any clogs or debris. If your attic is excessively hot even with clean vents, consider the installation of an attic veentilation fan. Attic ventilation fans are cost effective, are simple to install, and require little to no structural alterations to your house.
You can work with your trusted HVAC contractor to compare the R-value (resistance to heat flow) of your attic’s current insulation against the R-value that is recommended for our area by the U.S Department of Energy. If your insulation is lacking, your contractor can determine how much and what type of insulation you need.
For more advice on attic insulation and ventilation, contact the professionals at Overland Park Heating & Cooling. We proudly serve the Kansas City metro area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Overland Park, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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