Besides being extra storage for your home, the attic is responsible for providing a protective barrier against heat, cold, and humidity. However, other factors may hinder your attic from doing its job. If you do not properly insulate your attic for a long time, it may affect your home’s comfort, safety, and efficiency.
You may also experience some cases where your heater is not properly heating your house even if it functions well. This is because the heat usually climbs up your roof, penetrating your attic ceilings and window. In these cases, you may want to check your attic insulation right away.
3 Main Benefits of Attic Door Insulation
If you want to be cozy in your house, it is essential to insulate your home. Even if it is simple, insulation could benefit you in a lot of ways. It may include lowering your utility bill, providing better indoor quality, safer home structure, and less HVAC maintenance. Here is how attic door insulation could benefit you:
1. Lower utility bills
On average, an American home uses 50-70 percent of energy for cooling and heating. If your house is not insulated adequately, you will have to spend more to maintain a desirable temperature. On the other hand, insulating your attic could help you save up to 15% of your heating or cooling costs.
2. Better indoor quality
As the air leaks into your home due to a poor or no insulation, your house could experience contamination from pollutants such as dust, dirt, and mildews. These could cause airborne toxins that are very harmful to health. However, sound insulation could save you from this scenario.
3. Safer home structure
You may already know that heat and moisture can cause gradual damage to your home structure. By insulating your attic door, you can prevent the water vapor from seeping through your walls and eroding it. This practice can also save your roof from shingles and cracks due to the built-up heat inside the attic.
A step-by-step Installation Guide on Insulating Attic Doors
Now that you know why you need to insulate your attic door, here is a step-by-step guide to help you do it. However, make sure to inspect your attic door and seal first to know how much effort you need to make proper insulation.
1. Check for any air leaks and wood stops.
There are two ways to check the air leaks on your attic. The first one is by lighting an incense stick, or you can use any paper. If you notice an erratic air movement from your attic door or hatch, you need to replace your weatherstripping.
Moreover, you can also check your weatherstripping and molding manually and see if there are any damages. Make sure to add 2 ½ inch stops over the entire opening if your attic hatch rests on the molding. These wood stops will serve as a larger area for weatherstripping.
2. Remove the gaskets/weatherstripping around the attic hatch opening.
After inspecting your gaskets or weatherstripping, make sure to remove any dried out or damaged part. If it is unfastened, you can pull them away easily from the door frame. However, you will need more time to remove all the fasteners if the weatherstripping has nails and screws.
3. Install a new weatherstripping
After the previous process, it is now the right time to install new weatherstripping. Measure the bottom edge of the trim and cut it around the other edges. Do this until they fit all four sides. You can purchase self-adhesive weatherstripping to make it easier.
4. Add rigid foam fiberglass board to the back of the hatch.
In this next step, you have to cut a piece of rigid foam board or fiberglass to glue or nail it on the back of the attic hatch or attic access door. If you are not confident about this, you can purchase a pre-cut attic door insulation material from your trusted home improvement store. If you want, you can also order online but make sure to only buy from a trusted online store.
5. Attach hook-and-eye-fasteners
After you put new weatherstripping and cut a piece of insulation, you can now attach hook-and-eye fasteners. This will help your door compress when you latch the hook. You may also double-check if there are still some remaining faults in your insulation. To do this, just light an incense stick or any paper and hole it around the perimeter just like what you did on the first step.
If these steps are not enough to build proper insulation to your attic, you might want to consider getting a flush attic and ceiling access panel.