If you’re interested in learning about different methods of insulating homes or other structures, then siding insulation is a phrase you definitely need to be familiar with. It can completely change the way you look at insulation; not only does it provide energy efficiency, but it can even improve the performance of the siding and the whole wall system!
Let’s start by identifying the basic problem that siding insulation solves. When most people think of home insulation, they picture pink, fluffy fiberglass insulation that goes in between the wall studs and other framing members. This type of insulation is great for adding R-value to the wall and making your home more energy-efficient, but there is one big flaw with this method of insulating a home; by putting batt insulation between the studs, you do not insulate over top of the studs themselves. This leaves a major “thermal bridge” for energy to leak across. In the winter, heat from the warm inside of the home escapes to the cooler outdoors; in the summer, warm air from the outside comes across the studs, warming the cooler interior of your home.
So how do you break this thermal bridge and stop the energy loss? You guessed it… siding insulation. Siding insulation is rigid foam insulation that is contoured to fit the shape of the siding panel it is paired with. It can be installed behind the siding on the job site or laminated to some siding panels during the manufacturing process. Because the siding insulation is installed on the outside of the home, it completely covers up the wall studs and other framing members, breaking the thermal bridge. Click here to watch a short video clip about how siding insulation breaks the thermal bridge.
Now that you know what siding insulation is, you may have asked yourself one of the following questions. Although the answer to both could be “yes”, here’s why siding insulation is the better choice:
1.) Can I insulate over the studs from the inside out instead?
2.) If I decide to insulate from the outside in, can I use something other than siding insulation?
If you decide to insulate on the exterior, there are other flat foam product options to insulate under new siding. However, by using contoured siding insulation you reap extra benefits. Depending on the type of siding that siding insulation is paired with, benefits can include:
- Increased impact resistance (more)
- Enhanced moisture management, protecting your home from mold (more)
- Protects against pests, such as termites (more)
- Perfectly installed panels every time for an enhanced appearance, and more!