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Radiant Barrier Films as Insulation

There are countless opinions about the efficacy of radiant barriers as an insulating material.  Having installed quite a few radiant barriers in attics in Asheville, NC, we can attest to their value.  There’s just nothing like expecting to enter a blazing hot attic on a summer day, only to find that the temperatures up there are quite tolerable, due to the radiant barrier installed on the underside of the roofdeck.

Heck, if they didn’t work, why would NASA install them on satellites?

Don’t take our word for it, however.  Here’s a report of the results of an extensive study conducted by the Florida Solar Energy Center, on radiant barriers.  In it, they demonstrate a 20% reduction in cooling costs in post-retrofit homes.

The science can get a bit overwhelming, and that’s what starts to muddy the waters of understanding.  Here’s the all-time best description of how radiant barriers work;

You’re standing in the sun on a July day.  It’s hot.  Next to you is a 100-year-old oak tree and, man, does that shade look nice.  So you move into the shade of the tree and instantly feel cooler.

While the temperature of the air around you hasn’t changed one bit, the tree is blocking the radiant energy of the sun, and it makes you cooler.

Unfortunately, it’s too late to go back 100 years and plant an oak where your home will be today…[/jbox]

Fortunately, we now have radiant barrier films to achieve those same results.  Namely, stopping the heat from getting into your attic, keeping you comfortable and reducing your cooling costs.

A Note About Radiant Barrier Installations in Asheville, NC

Much of the testing of Radiant Barrier Insulation has been done in one climate extreme or the other, hot or cold.  Here in Western North Carolina, we live in what’s called a “mixed-humid” climate.  That means we have challenges in both the summer and winter, each of which require different strategic solutions.

In Phoenix, it belongs on the roof rafters, in Montreal, it needs to lay on top of the insulation.  We’ve tried it both ways and have discovered that, if you don’t have exposed ductwork in your attic, laying it on top of the insulation will give you a gain in both summer and winter.

Contact Conservation Pros today to reduce your cooling bills and increase your comfort with a radiant barrier