Whether it’s a handwritten thank you note or a care package to a loved one out of the blue, most of us know that the littlest things can create the biggest impact.
The same is true for your home.
Every little detail matters to homeowners. Whether it’s the finish of the kitchen cabinets or the color of the bathroom tiles, minor changes can result in major improvements.
Beyond appearances, there are a huge number of integral components which allow the house to become the home it is. Structural aspects of a house — a solid foundation, quality roof shingles, energy-efficient windows — all play major roles in boosting the home’s performance.
Improve Your Attic. Improve Your Energy Efficiency.
When it comes to energy efficiency, specifically, details can make a crucial difference. And one seemingly small (commonly overlooked) detail of the home is among the most sources of heat loss. It’s called the attic door, or attic “access.”
You know the one. It was perhaps at its comedic best in the scene from National Lampoon’s “Christmas Vacation” when Chevy Chase’s nostalgia in the attic is ungracefully interrupted by his wife pulling down the door he was unknowingly sitting on. Homeowners who don’t pay proper attention to their attic door are taking a risk.
Regardless of what someone chooses to use an attic space for, proper attic insulation is a two-part process. An attic should be properly insulated in its entirety, including around that attic door. The goal is to have the attic sealed and air-tight.
That doesn’t end with insulation and ventilation, though.
By using an attic access insulation cover, it’s possible to leverage the benefits of both air sealing and air circulation together with a smaller investment that packs a powerful punch and offers a tremendous return.
How do access insulation covers work?
Attic access covers put science to work.
Dr. Allison Bailes, otherwise known as “The Energy Vanguard”, calls attic stairs “a mind-blowing hole in your building envelope.” In addition to offering several insightful and fact-based blog posts, Bailes outlines scientific reasons as to why this is the case in his video series.
There are complicated formulas that describe the heat loss process, including detailed illustrations to help people understand parallel heat flow. However, since talking in “R-values” may not be the best way to make sense of how an attic access cover works, his simple summation points to a startling statistic:
If as little as 1 percent of an attic is under-insulated, heat loss may increase by as much as 27 percent.
Access Insulation Cover Benefits
Attic access insulation helps protect your investment
In cooler climates where snowfall is frequent and temperatures plummet in the winter, many of us turn up the heat to stay cozy and warm. Many homeowners neglect to factor their attic into this seasonal equation, despite the attic being a crucial component in maintaining an energy-efficient living space.
Still, all of the moisture from below needs to go somewhere. And oftentimes, it creeps upwards through the ceiling and into the attic. The contrast in temperature harbors a multitude of problems, as documented and thoroughly explained by the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association.
Problems include condensation from lack of airflow, mold and mildew growth, and the formation of ice dams over soffits. Each of these can have a negative impact on the life of a roof.
Additionally, an attic access cover is a strong investment in and of itself. Attic access covers are durable and built to last so you don’t have to worry about a tear from your attic ladder or door.
Attic access insulation can help save you money
Remembering that attic insulation is a three-part process is one of the best approaches to green building and energy efficiency in the home. Properly installed multi-layer insulation is crucial, but in order to maximize the efficiency of the space, it’s just as important to seal and insulate the attic access area and keep the air flowing using a solar-powered attic ventilation fan.
With less air able to escape due to proper insulation and ventilation practices, it is a more cost-effective way to keep warm air in and the cool air out — no matter the time of year.
Attic access insulation can make your home more comfortable
Just as a random act of kindness can brighten up your day, a random annoyance can do the opposite.
Luckily, you can help drafts coming from your attic. The thorough sealing that an attic access cover offers can help prevent this annoyance.
Likewise, when it comes to energy efficiency, the sealing, ventilation, and insulation that is provided can have a satisfactory impact on the overall comfort throughout the entirety of your home. By helping to prevent unwanted heat loss in the winter, and heat gain in the summer, attic access insulation covers help keep you comfortable year-round.
Attic access insulation can help keep pests out of your home
If your attic access has any cracks or gaps, it can be an easy entry point for bugs to get into your living area. Sealing the access with an insulation cover, however, can prevent this from even being a possibility.
When you combine the attic access cover with a healthy level of ventilation, you can reduce the risk of bugs being in your attic. Pests tend to live where there is moisture. Though, as we pointed out earlier, an attic access insulation cover can eliminate excess moisture when you have proper ventilation.
Insulate your attic access and explore more home improvements that make a difference
At yellowblue™, we understand the complexities of energy efficiency upgrades in the home. A layered approach, backed by detailed energy savings and home health analysis, is the best approach.
Your home is where our story begins. Contact an independent authorized yellowblue™ dealer today to speak with a healthy home expert near you and write the next chapter.