Adding insulation to your existing home or choosing the right insulation for new construction will be essential to saving money on your energy bills. You want to know how much it costs to insulate a 2,000 square foot house so you can budget your project. We will answer that question in this post and provide more information about choosing the best insulation for your home. There are several different kinds of insulation. Some of these can be installed by yourself if you have the time and knowledge to complete the project.
The average cost to insulate a 2,000 square foot home nationally is $2,700-$3,300 for the total project, including labor, materials, and installation. For a Do-It-Yourself project, the average cost is $700-$1300 for the total project. These figures are an average between the different types of insulation that can be installed in your home. These insulation types are:
- Open Cell Spray Foam
- Closed Cell Spray Foam
- Blown-In Insulation
- Fiberglass Batts
- Radiant Barrier
Please keep reading as we discuss the cost differences between these types of insulation and how to choose. You may also wonder if you can save more money by doing it yourself. This depends on your personal experience and ability to prepare safely for the project installation. It also depends on which type of insulation you are installing. This post will give you all of the considerations to make an informed decision about your home project.
What Is The Price Difference Between Insulation Types?
Open Cell Spray Foam
The average cost for open-cell spray foam is $0.50 per board foot. Board feet is the number of square feet multiplied by the thickness of application. The minimum thickness is 1.5 inches; 3,000 board feet for a total cost of $1,500 for just the material. The maximum thickness of spray foam is 3.5 inches; 7,000 board feet for a total cost of $3,500 for the materials.
The installation cost is an additional $1,500-$2,000. The total project cost to install spray foam would be $3,000-$3,500 for the minimum application and $5,000-$5,500 for the maximum application.
Closed Cell Spray Foam
The average cost of closed-cell spray foam is $1.15 per board foot. The minimum application for closed-cell spray is 3.5 inches. That is 7,000 board feet for a total material cost of $8,050. If you install the maximum application of 5.5 inches, then the total cost is $12,650 for materials.
The installation cost is similar to open-cell spray foam for a labor cost between $1,500 and $2,000. This project's total average cost with professional installation is between $9,500 and $14,650, depending on the application's thickness.
The average cost for blown-in insulation is $2500-$3,000, or $750 for a DIY project. It is not recommended to install yourself unless you are just installing it in the attic.
The cost to insulate your whole house with fiberglass batts would be about $2,700 with professional installation. You can cut the cost to $1,300 if you do the project yourself.
Owens Corning R-13 Fiberglass Insulation Roll
The average cost of a radiant barrier insulation project is $3,000, including the cost of professional installation. The materials are very cheap compared to other kinds of insulation. A DIY project could cost less than $600 for the materials.
500 Sq Ft Commercial Grade Radiant Barrier
Should I Install Insulation Myself?
Fiberglass batts insulation is most suited for DIY projects, while spray foam insulation should be professionally installed. Several problems can happen if insulation is not installed correctly. Here are some considerations before getting started:
- Fiberglass insulation should be handled only while wearing goggles and a face mask. Tiny glass fibers can cause harm to your eyes and lungs.
- Fire hazards are possible if insulation is in contact with wires or lighting fixtures.
- Too much insulation can be installed and prevent air from passing through. The insulation does not work correctly when it is packed tightly.
- Too little insulation could not provide the ideal amount of thermal resistance for your home.
- Gaps in the insulation could allow moisture to enter and negate the insulative properties of the material.
- Houses built before 1980 could have asbestos that will be disturbed and become airborne. Asbestos exposure is dangerous, and regular exposure can cause mesothelioma, a type of cancer. Safety goggles and mask are vital to protecting yourself in a DIY project, or even entering the house after professionals have installed your home's insulation.
- The presence of any air leaks or moisture is important to identify before beginning the project.
- The best insulation for your walls is not necessarily the best for your attic or basement.
What Does The R-Value Mean For Insulation?
The R-value is a measurement of the thermal heat resistance of insulation material. Every kind of insulation that you can purchase will include an R-value. The higher the number, the greater the insulative property. Each geographic location will have a recommended R-value based on how cold the weather gets in the winter.
You don't need to know how to do the calculation, because it is complicated. The important thing to know is that your insulation's R-value matches or exceeds the recommendation for your area. A higher R-value will help to reduce heating and cooling costs.
How Can You Insulate Your House To Save Money?
Choose insulation with a high enough R-value for your coldest winter conditions and hottest summer conditions. This will save you the most on your monthly energy costs. The first step is to seal any air leaks; otherwise, you will not receive the insulation's full benefit.
The average energy cost for a 2,000 square foot home is $2,000 per year. Insulating your home can save you 10-20 percent of your energy costs, or $200-$400 annually. Using an average of $3,000 for a home insulation project and $300 annual savings, you would recoup the project's cost after 10-years.
If you're looking to move within 10-years, you may wonder if it is worth the hassle. Adding insulation will improve your home's air quality because the furnace doesn't have to run as often. Whenever the furnace runs, it moves around dust particles in your home and can aggravate allergies. Your furnace should also have a longer lifespan and require less maintenance over time.
Sealing areas in your home where air escapes will prevent draftiness. If you have areas in your home that feel colder than other sections of your home, then you can feel consistent comfort throughout your home.
Is Spray Foam Insulation Worth It?
Spray foam is a good choice for new construction if applied correctly by a professional. It can seal off any cracks and improve the performance of your home's heating and cooling systems. Closed-cell foam is two to three times more expensive than open-cell foam. Open-cell foam is water permeable and requires a vapor barrier to be added. If the foam is placed in a spot where leaking occurs, it will absorb and hold the water against joists and beams, preventing the insulation from working and causing mold to proliferate.
Foam insulation is not recommended for older houses because they were not designed to handle this new form of insulation. This kind of insulation is permanent, so it must be installed correctly. The high cost of closed-cell foam and the risks associated with open-cell foam are other reasons to avoid this option for an older home. Using spray foam on a newer home or new construction will seal it up and improve your energy bills.
How Often Do You Need To Replace Insulation?
Spray foam insulation can last more than 80-years, and fiberglass insulation can last up to 100-years. This does not mean that the insulation will be providing optimum performance, because it can degrade with time. If you notice your furnace running more often than normal and your heating or cooling costs increasing, then you may choose to inspect your home.
Water leaks will stop the insulation from working as it should and may cause mold spores to be spread around your home. Vermin like mice and rats may take shelter in your attic space insulation. They are known to chew insulation and wires, which will reduce or eliminate the effectiveness.
Sealing Cracks And Holes
A cost-efficient way of improving your energy bills is to use some sealant to fill in any cracks or holes. Doing so will improve your existing insulation's efficiency and wouldn't require thousands of dollars in upfront costs. It will also prevent vermin from entering your home and destroying your insulation. You can get sealant and do it yourself or hire a professional that has experience finding where the air is escaping.
Loctite Gaps and Cracks Insulative Sealant
There are many things to consider before choosing the type of insulation for your home and deciding whether you will do it yourself. You can spend less money upfront and still save money by filling in cracks. You may just want to add new insulation into your attic or basement. The cost to complete the job will be significantly less than installing insulation throughout your whole house, and you may still get noticeable cost savings in your energy bills.
Insulating your whole home can pay for itself in less than 10-years, and that's only accounting for the savings in your energy bills. Your furnace and air conditioning systems don't have to work as hard, so their lifetime is extended. You also receive the benefit of consistent comfort in every room of the house. The air quality is improved, and allergens aren't blown throughout your home as frequently. Insulating your home has many benefits and can save you money in the long run.
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