Batt & Blanket Fiberglass Insulation
Fiberglass batts and blankets are the most common type of insulation in U.S. homes, but not necessarily the best. Batts are pre-cut, whereas blankets come in a big roll. Cotton batts or “denim insulation” – non-toxic alternatives to fiberglass – are also available. The advantages and disadvantages below refer specifically to fiberglass batts and blankets.
Fire resistant, and won’t settle over time. Good for retrofitting an attic if there isn’t a lot of obstructions; just lay it on top of the existing insulation, and take care not to leave gaps or skimp out around the eaves. Fiberglass is inexpensive (compared to cotton batts, spray-foam or rigid insulation), and is comparable to cellulose in terms of R-value.
Can leave holes and gaps where air can circulate or condensation can occur, reducing R-value. A 3/4 air gap in batt insulation will result in a 80% reduction in the R-value of the insulation. Fiberglass particles pose a health threat during installation. It takes nearly 10 times as much energy to produce fiberglass insulation as it does to produce cellulose. You wouldn’t be able to retrofit existing walls by installing batts without first removing the drywall.
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