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8 Clues Your Home’s Insulation Isn’t Working

By Caitlin Albright on February 21, 2023

Owning your own home can be a challenge. If you’re not careful to keep up on your home’s maintenance, it can easily drain your wallet. One of the best ways to keep your home comfortable year-round is to ensure it’s properly insulated. Not only will it increase your home’s value should you choose to sell it, but it will also increase your home’s energy efficiency which should lead to a reduction in your energy bills.


So, how do you know if your home’s insulation is doing its job? Here are 8 clues your insulation may not be working to its full potential.


Rooms are drafty or the temperature in your home is inconsistent from room to room.

Does it seem like your furnace or AC is constantly running to keep up with the temperature shifts in your home? This could be a sign heat is seeping in or out through your walls or roof.


Your heating and cooling bills are high.

One way to tell if your insulation isn’t working as well as it used to is to compare your home’s energy bills over the last two years. Is there a big increase? If so, your insulation may have settled or may be inadequate for the size or age of your home.


Your walls and floors are cold to the touch.

While it’s normal for exterior walls to feel cold during winter months, interior walls should not. If they do, this is a clear sign your home’s insulation isn’t keeping cold air from flowing through it from the outside.


Your home is noisy.

If you can easily hear your neighbors talking, dogs barking or street traffic, or if you can hear the kids playing in the basement while you’re upstairs, that’s a sign that your insulation isn’t doing its job absorbing noise and vibrations.


You have unwanted houseguests

in the form of rodents and pests who may be getting in through cracks in the walls.


You notice more moisture in your home.

Water damage leads to unsightly spots on ceilings and floors and can contribute to mold growth which can affect your home’s indoor air quality.


You suffer from asthma or allergy symptoms or notice more dust in your home.

Water damage that has seeped into fiberglass insulation can become full of mold and dust that is released into the air. If you notice your symptoms improve when you aren’t at home, you insulation could be the culprit.


Ice dams and frozen pipes.

Ice dams along your roof line are a result of heat escaping through your attic and causing the snow to melt on the roof. As the melted snow drains toward your gutters, it re-freezes and cause icicles and ice dams that block your gutters and downspouts. If your home suffers from frozen or burst water pipes that’s also a sign your pipes aren’t well insulated.


According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), sealing air leaks and adding insulation can increase your home’s comfort, energy efficiency and even provide up to a 10% savings on annual energy bills. Some DIY fixes include weather stripping on doors and caulking around windows. If you’re handy, consider sealing leaks in ceilings and joists and adding insulation in your attic (or hire someone to do if for you!)



For more energy and cost saving tips, visit NOPEC’s Energy Savings Center.

Tags: Energy Efficiency, Energy bills, Insulation, Temperature, Drafty
Categories: Energy Efficiency

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