Better Home Insulation Tips

| by Doug McNeill
Better Home Insulation Tips

As a construction professional, insulation is your friend. It secures a home’s energy envelope which means the homeowner saves money on energy bills and it makes for a more comfortable home. Proper installation of insulation is the key to success. It doesn’t matter what kind of insulation you choose, putting it in right will be the best way to ensure a tight building envelope.


Compressed insulation loses R-value. Liaise with your client to find a minimum thickness that works for both of you and then go for consistency. Utilizing raised-heel trusses will mean your top chord is raised and insulation won’t be compressed. This allows you to use cheaper batt insulation as you’re able to extend full-depth insulation to the outside of the top plate. This enables you to meet stringent new energy codes without spending more on insulation.

If your insulation is not uniformly distributed, you will be losing heat and conditioned air in the summer and it will reduce your R-value.


There is a grading protocol for insulation which was created by RESNET in 2006. This means that a home inspector will rate each insulated assembly for R-value and give it a grade from 1-3 with Grade 1 being the best. The grade is determined by how many gaps there are in the insulation. Here’s the RESNET illustration—the dark areas represent gaps in the insulation.

Grade 1 would essentially mean there are no gaps in the insulation while grade 2 would mean up to 2% gaps and grade three can have up to 5% gaps. The grades also take into account compression and incomplete fill.

When you put insulation into a home, your installation will ensure that you’re getting all the R-value you’ve paid for. Always ensure you get a minimum thickness (rather than an average thickness) and that you get Grade 1 installation quality.

This blog was developed by Norbord. All posts, sponsored and un-sponsored have been reviewed and approved by the Sustainable Community Media Editorial Team to ensure quality, relevance/usefulness and objectivity.

Topics: Insulation, Lumber and Structured Panels

Companies: Norbord, Inc.

Doug McNeill

Doug's 40+ years in the forest products industry has provide a broad understanding of multiple aspects of the industry. He spent 7 years in national builder sales and industrial sales before joining Norbord Building Materials in 1980. His 7 years in Pro Dealers sales led to 8 years as branch manager in several distribution centers across the country, 1 year as National Account manager, and 2 years as operations manager before moving to Norbord Inc as Export OSB Sales Manager.

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