If you have a small attic that you don't use for storage or anything else, you may rarely go in there and have no idea how the insulation is holding up. Attic insulation is very important for controlling comfort in your home and keeping energy costs low, so you should check it occasionally, especially if you have old batt insulation. If you have an older home and the insulation hasn't been updated in years, it may be time to have new insulation put in. Here are some of your choices in new attic insulation.
Spray Foam Insulation
The spray foam insulation option is popular with many homeowners. It's sometimes used during the new home construction process, but you can have it applied to your existing attic as well. The reason spray foam is so effective is that it flows around odd shapes and fills in cracks so it forms a continuous air barrier in your attic. Spray foam is also resistant to pest damage and water damage so it lasts a long time. Spray foam should be applied by a professional because it's difficult to work with. It sprays on as a liquid and then turns into a foam that expands and gets hard, so it has to be applied properly. One drawback to spray foam is that it is an expensive option.
Blown In Insulation
Another popular option in attic insulation that is also used in new home construction and old attics is the blown in variety. This type of insulation is blown into the attic so it covers the floor, and since it consists of tiny bits of fiberglass or cellulose, it is easy for it to fill up irregular shapes to provide a thick blanket of insulation. Part of the reason spray foam and blown in insulation are more effective than fiberglass batt insulation is because the batt insulation is made in standard sizes that might not get a good fit in areas of your attic that have an unusual shape or where protrusions come through the floor. When cellulose is chosen, it's treated to resist insects and fire so the insulation is safe and lasts a long time.
If you own an older home, it may have fiberglass batt insulation in the attic now. You may decide to buy the same material if you have a small budget since fiberglass batt insulation is the most affordable. However, switching to spray foam or blown in could be a better option for blocking air leaks and reducing heat transfer. Talk to your contractor about the right choice of attic insulation so your home stays comfortable during all seasons of the year.