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Air Sealing Tips

You can reduce your home’s costs through proper insulation and air sealing techniques. Air leakage occurs when outside air enters and conditioned air leaves your house uncontrollably through cracks and openings. Checkout these air sealing tips and learn more at Energy.gov.

Air Sealing Tips

Image Credit: Energy.gov

Air Sealing Tips:

  • Test your home for air tightness.
  • Caulk and weatherstrip doors and windows that leak air.
  • Caulk and seal air leaks where plumbing, ducting, or electrical wiring comes through walls, floors, ceilings, and soffits over cabinets.
  • Install foam gaskets behind outlet and switch plates on walls.
  • Inspect dirty spots in your insulation for air leaks and mold. Seal leaks with low-expansion spray foam made for this purpose and install house flashing if needed.
  • Look for dirty spots on your ceiling paint and carpet, which may indicate air leaks at interior wall/ceiling joints and wall/floor joists, and caulk them.
  • Cover single-pane windows with storm windows or replace them with more efficient double-pane low- emissivity windows. See theWindows section for more information.
  • Use foam sealant on larger gaps around windows, baseboards, and other places where air may leak out.
  • Cover your kitchen exhaust fan to stop air leaks when not in use.
  • Check your dryer vent to be sure it is not blocked. This will save energy and may prevent a fire.
  • Replace door bottoms and thresholds with ones that have pliable sealing gaskets.
  • Keep the fireplace flue damper tightly closed when not in use.
  • Seal air leaks around fireplace chimneys, furnaces, and gas-fired water heater vents with fire-resistant materials such as sheet metal or sheetrock and furnace cement caulk.

Insulation for your home is a major decision, whether you are building a new home or doing structural remodeling. Your decision should be based on your needs, desires and budget. At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, our certified professionals undergo extensive training followed by continuing education and re-certifications throughout their careers.  When choosing insulation for your home, our experts will provide you with options and help you select the best insulation products available.

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Adding Insulation

Adding insulation to an existing home can increase energy efficiency and reduce utility bills. First, you need to find out how much insulation you already have in your home and where.  A qualified home energy auditor, like Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, can check your insulation.

Adding insulation

In newer houses, you may be able to find out what insulation was installed from the builder. In older houses, you’ll need to request an energy audit or if you prefer to do it yourself, follow these helpful tips from the U.S. Department of Energy:

  • Inspect the attic, walls and floors adjacent to an unheated space, like a garage or basement.  See what type of insulation you have and measure its thickness.
  • Check the exterior walls using an electrical outlet:
    • Turn off the power to the outlet.
    • Remove the outlet cover and inspect the cracks to see if there is insulation.
    • Remove some of the insulation to help determine the type.
  • Tip – Just because you find insulation in one wall doesn’t mean that it’s everywhere in the house.
  • Check and measure the thickness of any insulation in unfinished basement ceilings and walls, or above crawl spaces.
  • Once you’ve determined the type of insulation you have in these areas and its thickness, check out the U.S. Department of Energy to determine the R-values of insulation previously installed in your home.

Henges Insulation & Fireplaces in Olathe, Kansas, is a leading contractor in the insulation and fireplace industries in the Kansas City area. We have provided high-quality products and services to builders, remodelers, designers, architects and homeowners since 1932.

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Benefits Of Insulation

Do you know the benefits of insulation? A properly designed and installed insulation system can provide short and long term benefits.  Insulation can help protect your property and save you money.  Read more from the National Insulation Association.

Benefits Of Insulation

Benefits Of Insulation:

  1.  Reduces energy costs
  2.  Prevents moisture condensation
  3.  Reduces capacity and size of new mechanical equipment
  4.  Enhances process performance
  5.  Reduces emissions of pollutants
  6.  Safety and protection of personnel
  7.  Acoustical performance: reduces noise levels
  8.  Maximizes return on investment (ROI)
  9.  Improves Appearance
  10.  Fire Protection
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Top 5 Reasons To Be Energy Efficient

High performance insulation uses less energy! Learn the top 5 reasons to become more energy efficient. These reasons are in no particular order because each person’s priorities are unique. Read more to see which reasons to be Energy Efficient are most important to you.

  1. Energy efficiency saves you money.
  2. Energy efficiency improves the economy.
  3. Energy efficiency is good for the environment.
  4. Energy efficiency improves national security.
  5. Energy efficiency enhances quality of life.

We welcome all insulation jobs, big or small, residential or commercial. We will evaluate your project, consult with you on your goals, help you choose  appropriate insulation, air seal your structure and install insulation with the precision and thoroughness that guarantees a job done right. We choose our products from proven manufacturers. With our extensive knowledge and experienced professionals, you will get optimum performance out of insulation installed by Henges Insulation & Fireplaces.

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How To Tell If Your Home Is Under Insulated

As an extension of Jay Henges Enterprises Inc., we began installing insulation in the Kansas City area in the early 1940s. We have continued to expand and perfect our services since then. At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, we know that your home is an important investment. We also recognize your desire to decrease your overall home-ownership costs. We will work with you to find the best insulation for your home. 

How To Tell If Your Home Is Under Insulated

How To Tell If Your Home Is Under Insulated

High Energy Bills:

If you have an efficient heating & cooling system and your windows are in good shape, your insulation is probably the reason for your high energy bills. If your home is poorly insulated, your HVAC system has to work harder to keep your home at a desired temperature. This is because a home that isn’t properly insulated allows heat to seep into your home in the summer and cold air in the winter.

Animals In Your Home:

Insulation helps protect against bugs and insects getting in your home. If mice and bugs can get in, so can the cold or hot air! By adding insulation you can help save money on your utility bill and protect yourself from these unwanted guests.

Inconsistent Temperatures:

Another telltale sign your home needs more insulation is if the upper levels of your home experience more heat and humidity in the summer months. Temperature differences that are 10-15 degrees or more between your lower and upper floors are a sign of poor insulation. Inconsistent temperatures is another issue that can affect how hard your heating and cooling system has to work, which will cost you more money on your energy bills.

Freezing Pipes In The Winter Months:

Frozen pipes in the winter shouldn’t be an issue if you have a properly insulated home. If you experience this problem you are probably lacking insulation in the walls of your home and maybe your attic. Don’t wait too long to fix the issue, or you could have a real mess on your hands that will cost you a lot more money than having insulation installed. 

We will be happy to talk to you further to help you decide which type of insulation is best for your Kansas City home. Our technicians are thoroughly trained, obtain regular re-certifications throughout their careers, and understand the complexity and importance of insulation. 

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Proper Installation: Why It’s Important

A proper insulation installation is important and will make a difference! A poor insulation installation can lead to hidden costs for builders and poor energy performance with the homes they build. 

Proper Installation

Download this guide from NAIMA to learn why builders should care, the costs of different insulation installation approaches and get a “quality management” checklist to help builders, raters and insulation contractors collaborate to deliver proper, Grade I installations.

The effectiveness of insulation depends more on the quality of installation than the material used. Tests show that a mere four percent gap from poorly installed insulation can cut your insulation’s performance in half! At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, we understand this. Our field technicians are thoroughly trained, obtain regular re-certifications throughout their careers, and understand the complexity and importance of insulation.

 

 

 

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4 Reasons to Add Insulation to Your Home

One of the smartest things you can do as a homeowner is to add more insulation to your home. There are a lot of compelling reasons to do this. It will make you more comfortable in your home, and it will save you money.

Add Insulation to Your Home

The insulation pros at Henges Insulation have compiled a list of four smart reasons you should add insulation to your St. Joseph area home:

1. Lower Your Heating and Cooling Costs

Many homeowners are unaware that heating and cooling costs account for up to 50 percent of their energy bills. Think about what you spend every year on heating and cooling your home. You can save a lot of money if you reduce your heating and cooling costs by adding attic and wall insulation to your house.

2. Most Homes Do Not Have Enough Insulation

You may have looked in your attic and figured you already have plenty of insulation. Actually, even if you have insulation, the chances are that you don’t have nearly enough. Plus, insulation will settle over time making it less energy efficient and less effective. Most people don’t realize that they could add extra insulation to keep their climate-controlled air inside their houses where it belongs.

3. Insulation Will Pay for Itself over Time with Energy Efficiency

A common excuse people make to avoid adding insulation to their homes is that it is too expensive. In fact, if you want to save money, you should add insulation. When you add insulation to the walls and attic in your house, the expense will pay for itself many times over in reduced heating and cooling costs in subsequent years.

4. You Will Feel More Comfortable and Save Money at the Same Time

There aren’t a lot of things that will both make you more comfortable and save you money, and you need to take advantage of them when you find them. By installing extra insulation in your home, you will get to enjoy being more comfortable inside your home while saving a lot of money on your energy bills. There are few things you do to improve your home that offer a better return on your investment than adding insulation to your house.

If you want to take advantage of the benefits of adding insulation in your home, we are here to help. We have been St. Joseph’s trusted insulation company since the 1940s and we’ll be here tomorrow.

To learn more about adding insulation in St. Joseph, call Henges Insulation at 913-764-4600.

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The ABCs of Insulation

insulation differences explainedAt Henges Insulation and Fireplaces, we offer many different kinds of home insulation. It may be a bit confusing for homeowners to decide which kind is best for their home. So we wanted to break it down for you and explain the differences between each type of home insulation. Here we go:

Cellulose Insulation – Cellulose insulation is plant based. It is usually made from recycled paper that has been treated to be fire resistant. Is it sometimes favored over fiberglass insulation because it is environmentally friendly. Cellulose insulation is treated with fire retardants to meet all federal, state, and local fire safety requirements.

Fiberglass – Fiberglass insulation is a man-made mineral fiber con¬structed from a variety of materials, such as sand and recycled glass. It is the most popular type of insulation used in the U.S.

Batt (Roll or Rolled) Insulation – Batt insulation is simply fiberglass insulation that is attached to craft paper on one side. This facilitates the installation process by making it easier to handle. It is typically rolled which is why some refer to it as roll or rolled insulation.

BIBS (Blow in Blanket) Insulation – BIBS® is a patented insulation system that blows fiberglass insulation into walls, floors, attics and ceilings. The BIBS® system is very effective because the insulation is free of voids and does not deteriorate over time. It is guaranteed against settling. Contractors must undergo intense training and be licensed to install the BIBS® insulation system. At Henges, we will install your blow in blanket insulation according to the manufacturer’s specifications to ensure that you get the most money for your insulation dollar.

Spray Foam Insulation – Spray foam is made from polyurethane – a closed-cell foam that contains low-conductivity gas in its cells. It is excellent at temperature control and also reduces noise. Spray foam insulation comes in two different types:
Open Cell-With open cell, the tiny cells are not completely closed. It is a very good air barrier but does not provide any type of water vapor barrier. Open cell is less expensive than closed cell. It is usually used for interior walls because it provides sound reduction as well. It is not recommended for outdoor applications.
Closed Cell-Closed cell spray foam insulation is much denser. It has a smaller, more compact cell structure. It is a very good air barrier as well as a water vapor barrier. It can be used anywhere in the home

Hire the Insulation Professionals in Kansas City
We hope that helps clarify some questions you may have had about insulation. We will be happy to talk to you further to help you decide which type of insulation is best for your Kansas City home. The important thing to remember is that the effectiveness of insulation depends more on the quality of installation than the material used. Tests show that a mere four percent gap from poorly installed insulation can cut your insulation’s performance in half! At Henges Insulation & Fireplaces, we understand this. Our technicians are thoroughly trained, obtain regular re-certifications throughout their careers, and understand the complexity and importance of insulation. Call us for professional insulation for your Kansas City home – 913-764-4600.

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Why Insulation Is as Important in the Summer as it Is in the Winter

Did you know that about half of the energy we use to heat or cool our homes would leak out without insulation? When we think of insulation, we usually associate it with keeping our home warm in the winter season, but insulation helps just as much in the summer months.
insulation installation in Kansas City

Attics can reach sweltering temperatures of up to 150 degrees in the summertime. Having a hot attic and little insulation between it and the rest of your home means that, on a hot day this extreme heat can “leak” into your home through your ceilings.

Hot Attics Mean Hot Houses

Even a little bit of hot air of that temperature making its way into your house can drastically increase the cost of cooling your home. Unfortunately, building materials like wood and drywall soak up heat easily and radiate it back. With no insulation to keep your ceiling from soaking up the heat from the sun, that heat will, in turn, radiate down into your home causing the temperature to rise and more money to be wasted trying to cool it. For homes that have their ductwork run through their attic, this problem is exaggerated because the heat in the attic can suck all of the coolness from the air and result in your ducts blowing warm air. Proper attic insulation and ventilation will help to greatly reduce rising temperatures in your attic.

Older Homes May Have No or Less Effective Attic Insulation

If your home is older, it may not have any insulation in the attic. Or if you haven’t added to your insulation in years, it may be compressed and therefore less effective. Either way, you could be losing heating and cooling dollars every single day. Insulation works by trapping little pockets of air that then form an air barrier between the inside and outside temperatures. Because these pockets of air can’t move, they can’t travel through the insulation to transfer their heat. Over time, insulation settles, is introduced to moisture which weighs it down, and may even get walked on occasionally all of which presses these pockets of air out of the insulation making it less effective. If you own an older home, it’s important to make sure you have adequate insulation. In moderate climates, the minimum recommended R-value is R-30 for an attic, R-11 for walls, R-19 for raised floors, and R-4.2 for ductwork.

A Small Investment in Attic Insulation Can Make a Big Difference

Considering that about half of a household’s entire energy bill goes to heating and cooling, and attic insulation is relatively inexpensive, there’s little money to be lost and lots to be gained from insulating your attic. You’ll reduce heating and cooling bills, give your furnace and air conditioner a break, and improve the comfort in your home. For a free home insulation evaluation, call Henges Insulation today.

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Insulation Basics

Ever wondered how insulation works? Understanding how insulation works can help us find the right material for a particular project.
how insulation works

We found a great article on buildinggreen.com that explains the basics:

Choosing the right insulation can be confounding. No other building material comes in so many forms—from ground-up newspapers to foam boards to translucent gel. Understanding how insulation works can help us find the right material for a particular project.

The word insulation comes from the Latin insula—an island. Insulation attempts to create a climate-controlled enclosure by slowing heat flow—quite a trick, since thermal energy will always keep moving until equilibrium is reached, and your “island” of conditioned air is tiny compared with the outdoors. It gets even trickier when you consider that heat moves in three different ways: through conduction, convection, and radiation.

How Insulation Works:

Thermal conduction is the movement of heat through direct contact: one molecule, literally vibrating with thermal energy, bounces into an adjacent molecule, transferring some of that energy. If you touch a hot wood stove, your hand will rapidly gain heat through conduction. Convection, by contrast, is the movement of molecules through a fluid or gas. It transfers heat because differences in temperature tend to cause air to move, carrying its heat energy. Air is warmed by a wood stove, becomes buoyant, and moves upward through a room, spreading its energy. Radiant heat flows by way of infrared waves. You can stand several feet from a fire and feel its glow. We are heated by the sun’s radiation, 93 million miles away.

R-value measures resistance to thermal conduction; a material with a higher R-value per inch is a better insulator. Most types of insulation work because they have millions of pockets of gas trapped within their structure. These pockets slow heat transfer from high-energy, warm air molecules to low-energy air molecules on the other side of the wall. Fiber insulation, such as fiberglass and cellulose, relies on trapped air. The R-value of some foam insulation is enhanced by trapped gases: low-conductivity blowing agents. The insulation materials themselves—plastics in foams or wood fiber in cellulose—are also inherently resistant to conduction.

Insulation materials stop convection in two ways. The material itself interrupts the air movement, and the individual pockets of trapped air are small enough that air currents don’t form within them. Some insulation materials also form an effective air barrier, stopping air from flowing through the building enclosure and carrying heat (and moisture) with it.

Materials differ in their emissivity—their ability to radiate heat. Low-emissivity (low-e) coatings such as foil facings, when adjacent to an air space, help slow heat radiation from a warm object to cooler objects. Radiant barriers have a place in specialized applications, as the low-e coatings in windows and the underside of roof sheathing, but paint and insulation manufacturers are notorious for exaggerating their benefits.Choosing the right insulation can be confounding. No other building material comes in so many forms—from ground-up newspapers to foam boards to translucent gel. Understanding how insulation works can help us find the right material for a particular project.

Original article can be found here.

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