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The attic is a part of the home that is often considered “out of sight, out of mind” by homeowners in Chicagoland and Central Illinois. It’s often considered an adjunct part of the home, useful for storage and seldom visited. The fact is, however, your attic can play a huge role in home efficiency and improving indoor comfort this winter. It’s time for you to take a closer look.
Ready to rule your attic before the snow starts falling? Here are a few things you can do to help gain a sense of how well this commonly forgotten part of the home is performing.
Start with a Visual Check
Before you start crawling around your attic, start by doing a visual check of how well it’s insulated. Climb through your access point and look across the attic. Is your insulation level with or below the floor joists? If it’s either, you probably are in need of a boost in insulation. Can’t see the floor joists at all? This is generally a good sign and means you probably don’t need any more attic insulation.
Measure Insulation Levels
While a visual check can be helpful, it’s not an end-all, be-all way to tell whether or not the attic is properly insulated. The next step is to measure insulation levels, which can be performed in two ways. The easiest is to simply look for an “R-Value” printed on the insulation, which may or may not be present. In the case that it is not, you can use a measuring tape to measure the depth of the insulation in inches. Ideally, it should be at least 12”, otherwise, you’re likely wasting money on your home heating and cooling bills.
Hire a Home Performance Contractor
At the end of the day, there’s no better way to determine whether or not your attic is properly insulated than to hire a home performance contractor. The right contractor will be able to determine the exact R-Value of your attic’s insulation, which is necessary for coming up with a succinct action plan for moving forward. If it’s found that your attic lacks insulation, performing the recommended home performance upgrades can lead to a marked decrease in energy bills as well as a healthier, more comfortable home environment for you and your family.