It’s typical for homeowners to forget checking the insulation, because it’s rarely seen after a construction or renovation. Checking parts of your home that lack insulation will help you determine the areas prone to leakage and where you can apply spray foam for better insulation.
As the temperature drops, uninsulated pipes are at risk of freezing. The ice that accumulates will expand and create cracks in your plumbing. Once it thaws, the water may leak through the gaps and cause damage to your home. At worst, certain areas in your home might flood once spring arrives.
Doors and Windows
The areas around your doors and windows are treated with weatherstripping to prevent cold air from entering and warm air from escaping. However, this will deteriorate over time, rendering it ineffective. Aside from the cold draft, this will create condensation, resulting in moisture damage and mold growth.
Much like your pipes, outdoor faucets are prone to frost during the winter. When the area surrounding the spout is not insulated, it’s prone to ice expansion, which creates holes in your walls come springtime. Although most choose to use specialized faucets to prevent frost, insulating the surrounding area is also essential for your home’s structural integrity.
Attics and Basements
Your attic is a good heat source during the winter, because it keeps heat from escaping. However, holes in its insulation will prevent your attic from effectively trapping heat. A poorly insulated basement, on the other hand, causes mold and mildew growth. These spaces require a balance between ventilation and insulation to ensure the right indoor temperature all year.
Most garages don’t need to be insulated. However, if you use your garage for hobbies and anything other than basic storage, it will need the same treatment as the rest of your home. Leaving this space uninsulated will create temperature problems, like cold drafts and excessive condensation, that can be felt throughout your whole property.
Vents and Ductwork
The vents and ductwork in older homes often have damaged insulation. When this is left unaddressed, you risk cold air leaking into your home. Damaged insulation will also let warm air out, causing your heating system to work harder and consume more energy.
Most homeowners tend to overlook their crawlspaces. However, these spaces are essential to maintaining your home’s temperature and air quality. Poor insulation will allow cold drafts to enter through your floors, which, in turn, will increase moisture build-up in the air.
The installation of insulation is part of the initial construction process. Unfortunately, poor building practices can lead to gaps, and sometimes inexperienced builders will forget about this crucial step. If either of these situations occur on your exterior walls, your home is at risk of several structural issues. In addition to excessive condensation from ice build-up, the absence of insulation can allow pests access to your home.
Your chimney provides you with an additional heat source, but it can also be the source of drafts during the winter. Older chimneys often have cracks and gaps in the area attached to your home. These holes allow downdraft to enter, lowering your interior temperature.
Much like new exterior walls, the ceilings of additional rooms are often left uninsulated. They become a source of cold drafts, moisture damage, and pest infestation.