Attic Insulation in Texas

Attic Insulation with Spray Foam in Texas:

Spray Polyurethane Foam Insulation can be used in two common ways to insulate your attic space and protect your home from other weather and moisture related damages.

New Technology Building Science
Spray Foam Insulation in the Roof Deck (Non-Vented Attic Spaces)
In this application, considered the most effective, by most of the SPF industry, the foam is sprayed directly to the underside of the roof between the joists, down around the rim and into the soffit areas, on the gable wall ends, effectively sealing off and insulating the entire attic space from any air infiltration.

The non-traditional practice of insulating the underside of the roof in the attic has raised much debate in the building industry because “standard” roofing and design techniques call for the attic to be ventilated in order to reduce moisture problems and heat build-up in the hot summer months.

However, a vented attic in Texas can quickly become an oven, often reaching temperatures of 140 degrees in the summer. There’s no reason for your air-conditioning and vent-ductwork to have to work in type of severe conditions. There is also opportunity for moisture to form due to condensation on these appliances. In Texas your attic is an oven placed over your house

By applying spray foam directly to the underside of the roof deck, it now insulates the attic space from the extreme heat that once radiated thorough the hot shingles sheathing and roof. The severe temperatures no longer exist in the attic. In short, the attic now becomes a “conditioned” space of the house that is just as comfortable as any other room in the home.

A roof system insulated with spray foam reduces energy several ways. Energy loss from ducts located in the attic is essentially eliminated. The top of the building is much tighter resulting in less infiltration and exfiltration, so excess moisture pulled into the attic. Infiltration through the ceiling is also reduced. In addition, the attic temperature is much lower, which further reduces energy loads. Properly installed a Foam attic can average 80 degrees in the hot texas sun.

In a standard insulation system, ceiling insulation reduces the transfer of heat from the attic to the living space (in the summer). Attic temperatures can often approach 140F during the day. Most of this heat enters the attic space through a multi-step process. First, solar energy warms the shingles and sheathing. The hot sheathing then transfers heat to the rest of the attic through conduction, convection and radiant heat transfer. The 140F temperature of the underside roof surface drives the heat transfer process.

By insulating the roof surface with spray foam, the surface temperature exposed to the attic (the temperature driving the heat transfer) is reduced by as much as 60F. Both conduction and convection heat transfer are proportional to a temperature difference, so that heat transfer will be reduced proportional to a drop in surface temperature.

The benefits of including the attic in the insulated space are:

  • Duct leakage and heat loss/gain from ducts is much less of an issue.
  • Air sealing the roof deck is much easier than sealing the ceiling.
  • Dust and loose insulation are less likely to migrate down to the living space.
  • You do not create extreme temperatures over your ceiling, that you then have to insulate from your living area.
  • Tests show energy costs are lower when the attic is sealed.

Please see the study attached of Two houses built exactly the same. One with Foam and the other with Fiber glass. The foam house has the new improved closed attic system. Air leakage is greatly reduced and energy bills were cut tremendously.

Traditional Building Science
Spray Foam Insulation in the Attic Floor (Vented Attic Spaces)

The method of use for spray foam in the attic is often dictated by the building science and design principles your architect and/or builder subscribes to. In a traditional vented attic, insulation is used on the attic floor to insulate the ceiling from the seasonal heat and/or cold. Spray foam is used where traditional fiberglass batts, or cellulose is used; between the floor joists. The rest if the attic is left un-insulated and highly vented through gable, soffit, and ridge vents in the roof structure. This type of engineered system is the most common throughout the US, but may not be the most effective.

Click Below For a Side by Side Study

Foam vs Fiberglass

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