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New Home Insulation Problems: 5 Things You Don’t Want to Happen
Amanda Ringler

By: Amanda Ringler on January 5th, 2018

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New Home Insulation Problems: 5 Things You Don’t Want to Happen

insulation  |  new build home insulation  |  new construction insulation problems

Insulating your new home is just as important as choosing the right flooring in the kitchen, but you also need to research what could possibly go wrong.

From cold and uncomfortable rooms to condensation problems, there are several things that can go wrong when insulating your new home.

RetroFoam of Michigan has more than 15 years of experience insulating new construction homes across the lower peninsula. In this time, we have been called out to newer homes that have serious insulation problems. These problems could have been avoided had the house been built with the proper insulation.

In our continued efforts to educate homeowner, we have compiled a list of 5 new home insulation problems and how to fix them.

RELATED: What are the Best Insulation Options for New Homes? (Spray Foam vs Fiberglass vs Cellulose)

New Home Insulation Problems

How to Insulate Existing Walls

  1. Closed cell spray foam can pull away from studs. A new home will shift and settle as time goes on. Closed cell spray foam is a rigid foam insulation, and because of this rigidness, it won’t move and shift with a new home. This can cause the foam to pull away from the studs where it has been applied.
    Solution: Most contractors will recommend open cell spray foam because of this. Open cell is a pliable material that will move and shift with your new home.

  2. Bonus room above garage is always uncomfortable. If the room above your garage is consistently too hot or too cold, lack of insulation is the culprit. The cold or hot air coming through the garage is going right through the ceiling and into the bonus room.
    Solution: When discussing insulation for your new construction home, make sure to discuss creating an air seal in the roof of the garage. This air seal will help greatly with keeping that bonus room cool in the summer and warm in the winter once you’re all moved in.

  3. Mechanicals throughout the home are larger than you need. There is a test called a “Manual J” which measure the amount of BTU needed to fully heat a new home. If your home has an air seal using foam insulation, it won’t need such large mechanics and will use less BTU to heat the house.
    Solution: Talk to your builder to make sure you are on the same page about what mechanics will be needed compared to the insulation you will have installed.

  4. There’s no air seal around windows or doors. When the windows and doors are installed, there is a possibility the contractor didn’t put any kind of air seal or insulation around those places. This will lead to comfort issues in your new home, as well as higher energy bills as the cold air leaks inside.
    Solution: Your spray foam insulation contractor can spray around the windows and doors to ensure you have the air seal that you want throughout your home.

  5. Condensation issues throughout the house. If your contractor decides to use “flash and batt,” but installs it incorrectly it will lead to condensation problems. Some insulation contractors will only apply 1-inch of closed cell and then add the fiberglass, which doesn’t create an air seal so condensation forms. Fiberglass retains that condensation, which can lead to mold and mildew growth.
    Solution: If your insulation contractor plans to use “flash and batt” ensure they are creating an air seal to avoid these moisture issues. It should be noted that 2-inches of closed cell creates an air seal, so the added fiberglass isn’t technically needed.

Avoiding Disaster with An Experienced Insulation Contractor

RetroFoam of Michigan is experienced, licensed, and insured. We also offer a lifetime warranty on not only our products, but also our workmanship.

If you’re interested in spray foam insulation for your new construction home and live in Michigan’s lower peninsula, give us a call at 866-900-3626 or fill out the form on our website to request a free in-home estimate.
Ultimate Foam Insulation Buying Guide for New Build Homes

About Amanda Ringler

Amanda previously has worked as a breaking news and crime reporter, TV news producer, and editor in Flint and Detroit. Throughout her career as a journalist, she has won several awards from the Detroit Chapter of Society of Professional Journalists and the Michigan Press Association. As part of the RetroFoam of Michigan family, Amanda uses her experience as a journalist to write content that will help educate homeowners on the benefits of foam insulation. When Amanda isn’t writing, she’s spending time with her husband and rescued huskies. She also loves knitting, making art, cooking, and hosting dinner and a movie night for friends and family.