Your walls: that’s what’s in it that’s important!

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One of the best ways to increase the value of a home is to add a room to it. It is also a good way to adapt the residence to the realities of a growing family that needs more space. To do this, several possibilities exist: digging the foundations, adding a new structure, or winterizing a large veranda so that it can be used year round.
Remember that what goes into the walls matters as much as the walls themselves. Good insulation is essential to ensure comfort and energy efficiency. Hydro-Québec estimates that an average home can lose up to 40% of its heat due to poor insulation of the walls, empty spaces between the roof and the ceiling and foundations. An important part of the thermal envelope of a house, insulation constitutes the barrier between the raw air from the outside and the air treated from the inside. It is therefore important throughout the year. If it is very expensive to heat a house in winter, it should be remembered that insulation helps keep the house cool during the summer. This is all the more important as a 10,000 BTU air conditioner uses approximately 502 kilowatt hours of electricity during the warm season!
Insulators come in several forms: semi-rigid insulation panels that are installed between wall studs, insulating mattresses, rigid panels for walls, particulate stuffing materials for small irregular spaces, insulating foam.
The insulation must be chosen according to the needs and taking into account the thermal resistance value of the product. The value “R” (or RSI value) is the thermal resistance to heat loss by conduction and per inch of thickness. The higher this “R” value, the more efficient the insulation. To save energy, it is important that the insulation level of the areas of the house complies with minimum R-values. It is usually recommended:
• Basement Floor: R5
• Basement Walls: R17
• Walls above the ground: R20
• Attic and roof: R40
For example, if a person wants to insulate walls above grade using R7 rigid panels, they will need to install 3-inch panels to provide adequate insulation. Rigid panels are probably the easiest to handle for handymen. They can be covered with drywall or paneling. However, it is sometimes preferable to use a combination of rigid and semi-rigid insulation boards.
Although there is no need to skimp on insulation, it is possible to save by choosing the right products and the right retailer. Employees at the Low-Cost Materials store in your area can help you choose high-quality insulation, and advise you on how to make your work easier.

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