What is R-Value and How Does It Work?

best insulation r value

Insulation R-value is indicative of how well the material can prevent heat from leaving or entering your home. R-value stands for resistance to heat flow or temperature conduction. R-values vary based on the type of material and its density. The higher the R-value, the more effective and efficient the insulation for heat regulation. 

Manufacturers measure R-value per inch of thickness. The installation method of insulation can also be indicative of the R-value. Blown-in, or loose-fill insulation generally has a higher R-value. Insulation blankets such as bats or rolls typically fall in the middle for R-value. Spray foam or foam board insulation commonly have a lower R-value. 

The R-value of insulation requirement may vary based on the area of the home. For example, the typical R-value for exterior walls is R-13 to R-23. For ceilings are attics, R-30, R-38, and R-40 are commonly recommended. 

The R-value requirement is also calculated based on the geographical location of the home. The U.S. The Department of Energy specifies zones with minimum R-value requirements based on the surrounding climate. The U.S. is divided into seven different zones for minimum R-value.The southeast portion of the country, such as Florida or Alabama, have a lower R-value minimum for homes. However, areas in the northern midwest and upper Maine have the highest R-value requirements, given the surrounding frigid climates. 

When considering the blueprints for your home, you can locate your designated build site on the Department of Energy’s map for your recommended insulation R-value. 

FRANK’s unique home blueprint packages recommends dense-pack cellulose insulation with an R-value that surpasses all requirements in the United States. A FRANK expert can advise you in assuring all R-values are up to code based on the area of your build site.

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