When you’re a homeowner, keeping the house insulated is crucial. Your home’s insulation keeps you and your loved ones comfortable during the harsh winters and blistering summers while maintaining the house’s energy efficiency. Without proper insulation, your HVAC system has to work much harder to cool your home in hot weather and maintain heat when it’s cold outside.
Poor insulation can cause your energy bills to skyrocket and leave your house drafty and uninviting. Correctly installed insulation batts also prevent moisture from entering your home, which can breed mold and destroy your house’s structural components.
In this blog, we’ll tell you how to install insulation batts for maximum energy efficiency and comfort.
What Is Batt Insulation?
Made of fiberglass or mineral wool, batts of insulation are one of the most popular forms of insulation on the market today. Manufacturers used to make insulation batts in large rolls, but they now precut them to fit between the wall and floor studs. Ceiling insulation batts fit perfectly between rafters, while attic insulation batts and sound insulation batts muffle outside noise.
Insulation materials each have a thermal resistance rating (or R-value) that determines their effectiveness. There are also batts of insulation with facing and without facing. The facing is a foil or paper that lays over the insulation to act as a vapor barrier.
The climate you live in will determine the R-level you need and whether or not you require faced or unfaced batting.
Required Tools for Batt Insulation Installation
Before installing insulation batts, make sure you have all the tools needed. It’s not ideal to start a project like this only to stop because you have to run to a hardware store.
To do a successful DIY insulation job, you will need the following tools:
- Work gloves
- Dust mask
- Safety glasses
- Staple gun
- Utility knife
- Caulk Gun
- Three to a four-inch putty knife
- Tape measure
Required Materials for Batt Insulation Installation
When purchasing insulation batts, choose insulation that will fit between your studs or rafters. It should also have an R-level that suits the climate where you live. For homes in warm climates, batts for attic insulation should have an R-level between R-30 and R-60.
The materials you will need for your batt insulation installation are:
- Insulation that fits the depth of the stud cavity
- 6-mil plastic breathable sheet (if using unfaced insulation batts)
- 2×4 wood plank
How to Install Insulation Batts
Fill All Stud Cavities
Position the insulation batts in each stud cavity, ensuring no gaps or spaces. Push the insulation to the back of the cavity before pulling the edges forward over the inside stud faces.
Cut the Insulation to the Proper Width
You must cut the batting to fit accordingly if you have any narrow stud bays. Lay the batt down in front of the stud cavity and line up one of the edges with the inside face of the stud. Place a 2×4 wood plank under the other side of the bat and cut away the excess using your straight edge and utility knife.
Cut the Insulation to the Proper Length
Insert the bat in the stud cavity, so it fits without cramming or forcing it since those actions will make the insulation less effective. Allow the insulation to hang past the bottom plate of the wall. Once it is in place, you can cut the bottom of the insulation batt to fit snugly in the cavity.
Getting Around Obstacles
To get around electrical outlet boxes, cut a groove in the edge of the batting. That way, it can slip behind the box without being stuffed into place.
If you encounter electrical wiring, pull the batting in half. This step will allow one side to slide behind the wiring and the other side to lay over it.
When dealing with plumbing pipes, position the full width of the insulation between the piping and the wall. Doing so will prevent the pipes from freezing during cold seasons.
Install a Vapor Barrier
If you’re using unfaced insulation batts, we recommend installing a vapor barrier over your insulation. This measure will prevent moisture from accumulating and breeding mold behind your walls.
Lay 6-mil plastic sheets over the insulation, applying a dollop of sealant on the top wall plate and the studs where the sheets are overlapping. Staple the sheets to the studs and the top and bottom plates.
Cost to Install Batt Insulation
The national average cost for batt insulation installation ranges between $780 to $3,500. Most homeowners pay roughly $1,640 for their installation.
Batt Insulation Installation Tips
- You can use a three or four-inch putty knife to work insulation into narrow spaces around doors and windows. Don’t force or jam the insulation into place, but make sure it is snug.
- Always wear long sleeves, a hat, and protective gear for your eyes, skin, and lungs when installing insulation.
- If you have a noisy household, look for sound-absorbing insulation batts to minimize airborne noises and impact clatter.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) – Batt Insulation
Which Is Better: Roll or Batt Insulation?
Each type of insulation has its benefits. Rolled insulation is ideal for floors and large spaces, while batt insulation is perfect for walls and attics. Insulation batts are also available with facing for additional moisture protection.
What Is Batt Used For?
Many professionals use batts for attic insulation for the walls and roof. Ceiling insulation batts are highly effective for maintaining energy efficiency in the winter.
Why Is Batt Insulation So Expensive?
Home improvement projects have gotten more expensive since the pandemic due to material shortages, shipping delays, and other industrial issues. At Attic Projects, we work with your budget to get the job done without creating problems for you.
The best way to ensure your insulation batts are working to full effect is to have a professional install them. At Attic Projects, we provide our clients with top-quality service and total satisfaction. Call our professional team to get your insulation project started!