In modern homes, cellulose makes one the most widely-used insulation materials apart from mineral wool and fiberglass. Whether you are planning to install insulation in a new home or update an old insulation system, it is certainly one option worth to consider. However, if you aren’t familiar with this material, you may wonder what are the cellulose insulation pros and cons. Discover the benefits and drawbacks of this material in the following.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Cellulose Insulation
Cellulose insulation is primarily made of recycled contents, around 75% to 85% of the material is composed of paper fibers that typically acquired from waste newspaper. The rest of its contents are made of flame-retardant substances such as ammonium sulphate and boric acid.
This insulation material is exclusively available in loose-fill form that applied only by blown method. Compared to other popular materials such as fiberglass, it offers more advantages such as better soundproofing qualities and a guarantee for the entire lifespan.
Here are more detailed benefits of cellulose insulation:
- An eco-friendlier material: As it’s been mentioned, cellulose material is mainly made of recycled paper that helps to turn tons of waste contents for better use. It is comparable to other materials when it comes to this aspect. For example, fiberglass material only contains 50% of recycled content. Not to mention, cellulose insulation doesn’t require ink removal or bleaching process that makes it need very low manufacturing energy.
- Outstanding performance: Compared to fiberglass insulation, cellulose material offers a far better performance value, especially regarding utility costs. It increases air tightness level up to 30% compared to other materials and it doesn’t need density to operate.
- Flame retardant: Cellulose contains boric acid that makes it resistant to fire. In addition, it also helps to prevent mold and insect damage.
- Moist-absorbing quality: In case you encounter water leak problem through a burst pipe or a roof, cellulose insulation can help to absorb the wetness instead of only hold moisture on the surface such as other insulation materials.
Despite the advantages that it brings, of course there are some drawbacks as well of using this material. Here are some disadvantages of cellulose insulation:
- Low amount of resources: One of cellulose substances, boric acid, is made of chemical boron that’s short in supply currently. There are only 3 mines around the world known so far that produces boron that’s certainly not enough to keep up with the current demand.
- A rather messy installation: Cellulose, unlike batt insulation, is not available in the form of neat small packages. It involves fiber pieces that can loosen up and hard to control and clean up during the installation process. A high amount of competency and skill is needed to install this insulation material without getting into havoc.
By now, you have learned about the cellulose insulation pros and cons. There are some alternatives available if you have determined if the drawbacks aren’t worth the benefits. However, keep in mind that every single insulation material has their own advantages and disadvantages that you need to observe before deciding which material would be right for you and your space.