There is no component of a home more important in minimizing energy costs than insulation. Insulation is the material used in walls, ceilings, roofs, and foundations that slows the flow of heat. Most insulation works by trapping air in tiny pockets, and it is the air that actually does the insulating. If you could keep air perfectly still and did not have solid materials that heat also conducts through (like fibers or cell walls), the air would insulate to about R-5.5 per inch. (R-value is a measure of resistance to heat flow; the higher the number, the lower the heat flow.) As an Asheville NC Custom Builder we know and appreciate the science behind good insulating materials such as fiberglass, cellulose, and foam.
With fiberglass insulation, the glass fibers create air pockets that impede air movement; higher-density fiberglass insulates better, because the air pockets are smaller and air molecules have more trouble moving around. Cellulose insulation works the same way, though because the air pockets are somewhat smaller, it insulates a little better. Polystyrene relies on a cellular structure, rather than fibers, to trap the air. Advantage Development Co. is a master award winning Asheville NC Custom Builder and is here to better educate clients on the best suited insulation for their new home application. We are a big fan of using polystyrene on the foundation walls, spray foam in the rim joist, blown cellulose in the walls, and spray foam in the attic at the roof line to totally insulate the house envelope. Visit us at http://www.advdevco.com/ashevillencbuilder.html to learn more about us an Asheville NC Custom Home Builder.