Pros & Cons of Installing Cellulose Insulation
Cellulose insulation is considered to be a greener option because it is made from recycled materials. It is typically made from newspapers using different types of methods. Whatever method is used for making it, there are many advantages of using this form of cheap insulation in your home. However, there are some concerns too. It is recommended to know both the good and bad before you choose this material.
Cellulose is considered better than fiberglass in terms of energy efficiency. While fiberglass is found to improve air tightness by around 40%, cellulose can increase it by over 70%. Fiberglass will improve insulation while increasing density, cellulose will not affect the density. It is lighter, as it is made from newspaper.
Because cellulose insulation is made from newspaper, it helps in preventing thousands of tons of newspaper from being wasted every year. Every year millions of tons of newspaper ends up in the landfill. But this has changed since people began using cellulose insulation in their homes.
Thus, when you are installing this type of cost-effective insulation in your home, you are saving the environment. The recycling process does not involve de-inking or bleaching. It is also a low-energy process, which helps in reducing your carbon footprint.
Despite these advantages, there are some concerns about cellulose insulation.
Cellulose absorbs moisture unlike most other insulation materials. Fiberglass and spray foam materials are resistant to moisture. But usually, you don’t have to worry about it. It can be of concern only when there is a significant problem of drenching. For example, if there is a leak in the roof that allows water to enter the attic or the walls.
On the other hand, fiberglass and other materials prevent moisture from entering the insulation. Even if there is a leakage in the roof or basement, the material will hold it off at its surface.
This is another concerning point about cellulose insulation. It is typically coated with fire retardant materials, but the coating can lose its efficacy over time. Cellulose itself is flammable and can prove to be hazardous as its fire retardant coating wears off over the years.
Resistance against Pests
Most soft insulation materials are vulnerable to rodents. Such pests can tunnel through them without much difficulty. So in this case cellulose does not have any disadvantage or advantage over other materials. However, studies show that pests and molds are usually not found in this type of attic cat insulation. This is considered to be because of the fire retardant coating on the insulation. But it is considered to have a general resistance against mold.
Overall, cellulose is a cost-effective and simpler insulation solution for your home. Installation is easier and quick and doesn’t leave behind too much waste. Besides, the material does not affect the indoor air quality. Because the material is recycled from newspaper using simple processes, it is also quite cheaper compared to other options. Despite its certain drawbacks, it is still fire retardant if you maintain the coating regularly and prevents pests from entering.