Your Guide to Eco-friendly Insulation

Your Guide to Eco-friendly Insulation

In recent years, the demand for green insulation has skyrocketed. New homeowners won’t even consider buying or building a home unless it’s green. On the flip side, old homeowners opt to upgrade their houses en masse, even though they involve extensive work. And, lastly, more and more contractors shift their focus toward green solutions. As a result, they are practically tripping over each other in a (successful) attempt to make new homes energy-efficient. So, why all this hype? Are eco-friendly insulation solutions that good? And, if they are, what are the best options? Well, that’s what we’re here to answer today!

Eco-friendly insulation: Benefits without downsides

The most significant upside of green solutions is that they benefit our gorgeous planet. They reduce carbon emissions, waste, and the need for fossil fuels, both in residential and commercial sectors. And that’s only a tiny, albeit noticeable effect. But let’s ignore that for a minute to see how green insulation can benefit you.

A woman sitting in a forest
Eco-friendly insulation benefits not only you – but the entire planet, too!

Natural materials improve your health.

The most important effect of eco-friendly insulation is that it enhances your quality of life. Going green makes your home more livable and positively impacts your health for several reasons:

  • Better air quality – Eco-friendly materials allow your house to breathe. They are all-natural and, thus, regulate airflow with greater efficiency than their artificial counterparts;
  • Reduced humidity – Natural materials regulate humidity by absorbing and releasing moisture as needed. Therefore, they increase the overall comfort of your home while reducing the possibility of mould build-up;
  • No harmful chemicals – Green materials rarely, if at all, demand heavy chemical treatment during manufacturing. As such, they cause much less skin, eye, or respiratory tract irritation.
  • Noise reduction – If you live on a busy street or somewhere where noise is constant, green insulation will help you keep your sanity. These materials double up as means of soundproofing, thus making your home a more serene place.

Spend less – gain more.

This may come as a surprise, but eco-friendly insulation materials are, in fact, cheaper than their artificial counterparts. As we said, they are all natural. Therefore, they are accessible and recyclable. This makes them easier and cheaper to mass-produce, thus wasting fewer resources. And the price reflects this fact.

Save even more money in the long run.

As mentioned in the previous point, eco-friendly materials are sustainable to produce. However, this trait also translates to your home’s overall energy efficiency. Green materials have an excellent thermal resistance (aka R-value), making it easier to heat or cool your home. Therefore, you’ll significantly cut the cost of your utility bills – even up to 20%! So, whatever you spend installing eco-friendly insulation, you’ll get back in only a few short years! Or, in other words: green insulation pays for itself and many times over.

Eco-friendly insulation is an amazing long-term investment.

You may be reluctant to make that giant leap and upgrade to green insulation. After all, it is a grand undertaking. But, what if you knew that it’s a once-in-a-lifetime job? Because – it is! Green insulation can last you for decades before it even requires inspection. In some cases – up to a hundred years! So, it’s a superb long-term investment if you plan on staying in your home.

Grandparents and their grandchildren lying on a bed
If you never plan to sell your home, going green is a choice even your grandchildren will thank you for.

 

On the other hand, maybe you intend to sell your house and move at a certain point. In this case, you’ll undoubtedly have to fit a bit of remodelling into your moving schedule. So, if you are still planning your process, definitely consider upgrading to eco-friendly insulation. It will drastically increase the resale value of your home. You’ll make your home more desirable and, thus, attract more buyers. So, it will sell faster and for a higher price, allowing you to plan your move and future with security.

A world of choices

There is one problem you’ll encounter when you decide to upgrade to eco-friendly insulation. Fortunately, it’s also the only one. Namely, green insulation comes in many forms that you can use as a wall, floor, and roof insulation. Therefore, choosing the right one can be a bit daunting. So, here’s a bit of a breakdown to help you in that endeavour.

Cellulose

Cellulose insulation is widely accepted as one of the most eco-friendly variants. It’s made from recycled newspaper, through a process that doesn’t involve harmful chemicals. So, it doesn’t release any toxic vapours, making it one of the safest insulation materials out there.

Sheep’s wool

Wool has little to no use in the farming industry. However, what it does have are fantastic insulation properties. This material allows your house to breathe while keeping it warm during winter and cool during summer. Add to that the fact that it’s fire-resistant, and you have magnificent, all-around protection.

Cotton/Denim

Cotton is an amazing insulator made from an all-natural, renewable source. However, producing it en masse is a bit expensive. Therefore, this type of insulation costs a bit more when compared to other types of eco-friendly materials. Still, it more than makes it up with its benefits. Cotton doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals. It’s light and breathable and can’t irritate. Also, it’s a natural bug repellant, which is a superb bonus if you never want to see a mosquito in your home.

Blue jeans
Jeans – the most popular clothing piece in the world perfectly doubles up as eco-friendly insulation.

 

Icynene

Despite its industrial-sounding name, Icynene is an all-natural insulation material. And the best one at that! This spray foam made from castor oil is a magnificent heat and noise insulator. Furthermore, it excels at sealing leaks and drafts, as it can fill even the smallest cracks. However, there is one downside to it. This insane sealing power makes an excellent ventilation system a must. Therefore, the initial investment of installing it is a bit higher. Nevertheless, it pays off in the long run.

Aerolite

Aerolite is a type of fibreglass known for its excellent thermal and acoustic insulation properties. Now, the fibreglass manufacturing process does not make it an eco-friendly solution. However, mentioned properties do. Aerolite insulation has no health risks, it’s bio-degradable, and does an excellent job at keeping your home cosy.

Polystyrene

Similar to Aerolite, Polystyrene isn’t an eco-friendly material, per se. However, it’s considered green because of its energy efficiency. It helps save electricity, as well as reducing the need for non-renewable fuel sources. Plus, it can add a bit of sturdiness to your walls, which is always helpful.

How difficult is it to upgrade to eco-friendly insulation?

As a matter of fact – not at all! Although installing insulation is considered a major remodel, it rarely takes more than a few days, depending on the size of the house. Again, however, this largely depends on your approach.

 

That said, the first thing you should do when making a transition is to hire pros. Although the eco-friendly insulation options we mentioned are pretty easy to install, the process isn’t without risks. Small mistakes can render the entire work obsolete, resulting in the need for a significant re-do after a short while.

A contractor explaining eco-friendly insulation to a client
Make all the right choices, and you’ll see the quality of life improvement in no time.

And, secondly, you should aim to provide a great work environment. As with any extensive construction work, this, too, demands a lot of space for optimal efficiency. So, if you’re transitioning to eco-friendly, it is an excellent choice to place your belongings in storage. This way, you’re ensuring unobstructed workflow. But you’re also making the whole job more energy-efficient. Therefore, storing your items can further reduce the impact on the ecology.

Eco-friendly insulation is a choice you’ll never regret

With everything said, it’s not hard to see that going eco-friendly insulation has virtually no downsides. On the contrary, it can improve your health, comfort and even benefit your finances. So, don’t be afraid to make this giant leap. You’ll help yourself and the planet in the long run, thus making it a better, healthier place for all.