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How Does Radiant Barrier or Reflective Insulation Help in My Crawl Space?

Are your feet cold? Are the floors in your house always cold? Heat naturally moves to cold trying to maintain equilibrium. If your crawlspace is not properly insulated, heat will escape and move to the cold ground below. With proper insulation, these heat losses can be minimized and your home’s efficiency can be greatly improved, lowering your energy bills and keeping your feet warmer.

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Are All Radiant Barriers Created Equal?

It looks shiny, does that mean it is highly reflective? No, not necessarily. Take for instance, a Mylar balloon or the inside of a potato chip bag. Both of these surfaces are often a very shiny silver, however, will only be 40 – 60% reflective. The same is true with some suppliers of Radiant Barrier. We recently tested some samples of Radiant Barrier from other manufacturers. 

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How Do I Know If I Need Radiant Barrier?

Have you ever been in your attic on a hot, sunny day? Attic temperatures can easily exceed 140 F if not equipped with Radiant Barrier. This is because the radiant heat produced from the sun heats up the roof of your house. That heat then conducts through the roofing materials until it enters your attic space and then starts to radiate through your attic. This radiant heat then contacts the insulation and ceiling of your home and holds that heat, and releases it into your home throughout the day and night, increasing the demand on your HVAC system. In addition, many homes have the HVAC ducts running through the attic space, exposed to these very high temperatures, requiring the HVAC system to run longer to cool your home.

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What is Reflective Bubble Insulation?

TempShield® insulation products consist of one or two layers of Barrier Bubble material laminated between layers of metalized film to provide excellent thermal resistance. The bubble contains an air retention layer designed to provide increased strength and puncture resistance.

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How Radiant Barrier Works: Heat Gain/ Loss in Buildings

There are three modes of heat transfer: conduction, convection, and radiation (infrared). Of the three, radiation is the primary mode; conduction and convection are secondary and come into play only as matter interrupts or interferes with radiant heat transfer. As matter absorbs radiant energy, it is heated and a gradient temperature develops, which results in molecular motion (conduction in solids) or mass motion (convection in liquids and gas).

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What is Radiant Barrier?

Radiant barrier insulation is a reflective insulation system that offers a permanent way to reduce energy costs. Radiant barrier insulation systems reflect radiant heat energy instead of trying to absorb it. A pure aluminized film radiant barrier reflective insulation is unaffected by humidity and will continue to perform at a consistent level no matter how humid it may be. A radiant barrier insulation system is a layer of metalized film facing an airspace and is installed in the envelope of a building.

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