Did you know the old, traditional insulation you have in your walls could be making you sick?
Your fiberglass and cellulose insulation could be holding onto particles it comes in contact with. That could be allergens like pollen, dust, moisture causing mold, and worse yet whatever pests leave behind.
Traditional insulation is known to hold onto these kinds of pollutants, which can make your home anything but healthy.
RetroFoam of Michigan has been working to make homes not just more healthy and energy efficient, but healthier as well. We do this by creating an air seal, which blocks those allergens from getting into the home, but we're getting ahead of ourselves.
We are on a mission to educate homeowners on everything home insulation, including how it could be affecting pre-existing lung conditions. In this article we'll break down how that old insulation could be making you sick and the best way to remedy it.
Identifying and Reducing Allergens in the Home
From mold to airborne particles, there are several allergens that can be found in your fiberglass or cellulose.
So, how did it get there in the first place?
Allergens in the Home
The problem with cellulose, as well as fiberglass, is that they both allow for air movement.
That means the outside air that is leaking into the home is getting caught up in the material where it stays lodged -- but not for long. The air can actually move through it, so air leakage comes in, and it is moving the allergens throughout the home with it.
That pollen and dust coming in from the outside are now floating around your home, kicking up problems with allergies and even asthma on one end of the spectrum and more severe lung conditions on the other.
Health Issues Caused by Pests
Traditional insulation can be easily converted into critter condos by mice, rats, bats, squirrels, and several other pests.
That's gross enough on its own, but it's what those pests leave behind that can cause serious health issues.
The accumulation of rodent feces can spread bacteria and trigger allergic reactions in humans. Worse yet, those feces can also spread diseases and viruses.
Mold in the Home
Fiberglass insulation has a serious problem – it’s susceptible to moisture.
And that moisture? Leads to mold and mildew growth.
“Airborne mold spores that settle in the fibers of fiberglass insulation thrive when exposed to moisture from water vapor in the air or condensation,” according to the San Francisco Gate. “Mold can be a source of unhealthy indoor air quality and produce allergic symptoms in susceptible individuals.”
If these issues with mold aren’t addressed, the mold growth can cause wood in the home to rot, according to the American Chemistry Council.
Now you’re probably trying to figure out how all this moisture ends up in your home.
There are gaps and cracks in your home that fiberglass insulation simply fails to fill or prevent. Condensation on your windows can also increase the humidity in your home.
How to Get Rid of Allergens in Your Home
You can combat these allergens and mold growth with foam insulation throughout your home.
Foam insulation is designed to fill all of the nooks and crannies, which in turn seals all the gaps and air leaks in your home. This effectively eliminates that nasty moisture and humidity wreaking havoc on your quality of life. It also gets rid of the possibility of allergens, pollutants, and dust getting into your home.
“Spray foam insulation can be the perfect solution for reducing airborne allergens and pollutants from entering your home,” according to spray foam manufacturer Icynene. “By insulating with spray foam, an air-tight barrier is created in the home’s structure, preventing unwanted irritants from passing into the house through tiny gaps or porous building materials.”
Just think about it – no more pollen or dust.
Allergy sufferers rejoice!
It’s the age of choices. Don’t choose to live with moisture, mold, and pollen by keeping that dirty fiberglass or cellulose in your home.
If you want to learn more about foam insulation, as well all of the benefits it has to offer, check out the Learning Center on our website.