When it comes to our home, we want to make sure that we are doing everything possible to keep it running efficiently and keeping us comfortable. One way to do this is by installing a radiant barrier. What is a radiant barrier, you ask? In short, it is a material that helps prevent heat transfer – making your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.
What is a Radiant Barrier?
A radiant barrier is a thin metalized film. The coating for this film comes in aluminum and aluminum alloy, sometimes with the addition of other materials and pigments that change the color and reflectivity. This coat acts as an insulator, reflecting or absorbing thermal radiation to reduce heat transfer through conduction.
When operating behind a steady-state condition (meaning there is no movement), radiant barriers can play a huge role in reducing your cooling costs by up to 50%! If you add insulation, which helps resist conductive heat flow, together with a radiant barrier you can see up to 30% yearly energy savings! A radiant barrier is not intended to replace insulation; rather, it supplements the insulation currently in place, creating a more energy-efficient home.
What are the benefits of a Radiant Barrier?
Not only does this barrier help keep you comfortable during the hot and cold seasons, here are a few other benefits that these barriers contribute to your home.
Reduces Heating and Cooling Costs
Radiant barriers will reduce heat flow to and from your attic. This means your home will need less energy to maintain a comfortable temperature in both the summer and winter months.
Reduces UV Exposure
While most people don’t associate UV exposure with their attic, it happens every day from the sun beating through unprotected skylights or vents. A radiant barrier’s coating helps reflect these harmful UV rays before they reach any other materials in the attic where they could be harmful.
Pays for Itself
In a few years, the cost savings on energy from installing one radiant barrier usually pays for itself.
Protects Against Moisture
A radiant barrier helps protect your roof and attic from moisture and humidity. This is especially important if you live in a warm, humid climate. It can prevent insulation materials from becoming wet and losing their effectiveness.
Can I add Radiant Barriers to existing insulation?
Yes! Adding radiant barriers to existing insulation may result in a more energy-efficient house. They can be combined with other insulation types, such as spray foam and even fiberglass.
Keep in mind that adding a radiant barrier does not mean you need to remove your current insulation; it simply supplements it — creating maximum comfort and efficiency for your home.
How much does a Radiant Barrier Cost?
The cost of radiant barriers varies depending on what you plan to do with them and the size and shape of the area you need to cover. The average homeowner can expect to spend around $3 per square foot for a roll product, while commercial projects tend to run upwards of $5-$7 per square foot.
There are also prefabricated shapes available such as flat panels (for attic floors) and 4’x8′ sections (for walls). These can also be custom-designed to fit your specific needs.
How and where to install Radiant Barriers
Radiant barriers are installed in much the same way as traditional insulation. You can choose to install a radiant barrier behind your drywall, over the roof, or beneath the flooring.
Adding a radiant barrier into your attic can provide yearly energy savings and reduce air conditioning costs during hot summer months. A radiant barrier will compress the area and reduce excessive airflow if you already have insulation in your attic.
When installed behind your drywall, you can achieve as much as an 80% reduction in radiant heat transfer. This is because it’s placed on the roof deck where most of the hot air collects, leading to that “stuffy” feeling we all know too well.
If your house already has insulation on the roof, covering it with a radiant barrier is an excellent method to tighten up your property and make it more energy-efficient.
A radiant barrier underneath your flooring helps insulate you from cold floors during the winter – especially helpful for those with early morning or late evening routines.
Hiring a professional Radiant Barrier Installer
Consider hiring a professional radiant barrier installer. These experts can assess where and how much material will be used in your home. They can also place it in the proper locations and ensure that the material is properly installed to maximize its potential. Most installers will provide you with a free estimate or quote that can help you decide which company to hire when doing this renovation.
You may not know it, but you are constantly fighting the battle of hot vs. cold in your home. Whether you’re trying to keep cool during a summer heatwave or warm up after an unexpected winter freeze, there is always something that needs adjusting about your indoor climate. If you need more information about Radiant installation, American Air Duct Cleaning New Braunfels will gladly help you out. Give us a call at (210)750-6810 today!