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Monday, November 12, 2018
Looking to save money on energy bills? Check your basement

Looking to save money on energy bills? Check your basement

When thinking about insulation, the attic is the first area of a home that comes to mind. Many homeowners never think of the energy lost through their basement box sills and rim joists.

Basement box sills and rim joists are a major source of energy loss. These areas are located around the perimeter of the basement ceiling where the walls of the home meet the foundation. They are some of the thinnest points in a home’s exterior and allow outside air to easily leak into the basement.

Not only can unconditioned outside air enter the home through these areas, they are also convenient entrance points for pests. Spiders, bugs and other creatures can find their way into your home through residual penetration points around HVAC, electrical and plumbing access points next to the basement ceiling.

Spray foam is an ideal two-in-one product choice that both insulates and air seals rim joists and box sills. Be sure to hire a qualified, insured and experienced spray foam contractor to ensure your basement box sills and rim joists are properly insulated and air sealed.

Insulating and air sealing your rim joists and box sills will make your basement (and entire home) more comfortable, reduce pest infestation and help lower your energy bills. Contact us to schedule your free estimate!



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Monday, November 5, 2018
The Good, Better and Best of Attic Insulation

The Good, Better and Best of Attic Insulation

When it comes to home insulation, the first area that comes to mind is the attic. Airflow within a building moves from ground to sky, naturally pulling conditioned indoor air up and out of a structure. Proper attic insulation helps keep conditioned air inside your home and helps keeps your home comfortable. Keeping conditioned air inside your home can also reduce wear and tear on your heating system and help keep energy bills in line.

There are three common methods used to insulate attics – blown-in fiberglass, blown-in fiberglass with air sealing and spray foam insulation. Here’s what you need to know about each.

Blown-in Fiberglass

Insulating attics with blown-in fiberglass insulation is a quick and easy way to add R-value. This is a basic method of attic insulation and a cost effective option to upgrade attics of existing homes or insulate attics in new homes.

Blown-in Fiberglass with Air Sealing

Combining blown-in fiberglass insulation with air sealing dramatically increases a home’s energy efficiency. This method helps keep conditioned air inside the home and adds R-value. In an existing home, attic insulation is removed and penetration points around the attic floor are sealed. After air sealing is complete, a fresh blanket of blown-in fiberglass insulation is installed. In a new home, penetration points around the attic floor are sealed before blown-in insulation is installed.

Spray Foam Insulation

Installing spray foam insulation in the attic of a new or existing home provides optimal energy protection. In an existing home, insulation is removed from the attic and spray foam is installed along the roofline. In a new home, spray foam insulation is installed along the roofline as part of the construction process.


Proper attic insulation combined with air sealing is one of the most cost effective ways to save money on monthly energy bills. Wondering if your home could benefit from additional attic insulation? Ready to discuss insulation for your new home project? Contact our office today!  




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Wednesday, October 10, 2018
Four Fall Projects that Save Money and Energy

Four Fall Projects that Save Money and Energy

Homeowners seem to have a never-ending list of projects. Landscaping, painting and other cosmetic projects are often a high priority. Before investing more time and additional resources this fall into these types of projects, consider some energy saving improvements. Here are four projects that can help save money on energy bills and increase your home’s comfort this fall – and all year!

Add a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat can help decrease overall home energy use, including heating and cooling costs. Smart thermostats adjust the temperature of your home based on your family’s schedule and your lifestyle. According to Nest, a smart thermostat brand, the investment can pay for itself over time based on an average 30% reduction in energy bills.

Air Seal
A home loses most of its energy (including heated air) through the attic. A home has a natural updraft that draws inside air up and out of the home through small penetration points in the attic floor. Sealing air leaks around the building envelope – including in the attic – helps keep conditioned air in the home and energy bills low.

Upgrade Attic Insulation
Once attic air leaks are sealed, adding a blanket of insulation will provide additional energy savings. Think of air sealing as tucking the blanket around you and insulation as the blanket. Insulation provides a thermal layer to helps keep R-value (energy) in a home.

Tune Up Your Furnace
A furnace works more efficiently and will have a longer life when it’s regularly serviced. Having your furnace serviced before heating season is in full swing can help prevent system problems during the peak heating season.

Have questions on the air sealing or attic insulation recommendations above? Contact us for a free estimate.

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Windows or Insulation? Read This First!

Windows or Insulation? Read This First!

When thinking about home upgrades, many homeowners consider two projects: insulation or windows. There are many conflicting messages about which is the best investment. Before you get out your wallet, read the following so you can make the best choice for your home.

One factor in saving energy is sealing the building shell – the outermost part of your home including walls, roofline and attic. Sealing the building shell will keep conditioned air inside your home. It will keep energy costs in line and make your home more comfortable. Windows comprise a small portion of the shell of your home and won’t provide the same energy benefits as air sealing and insulating.

Another factor in saving energy and considering insulation versus windows is your home’s natural airflow. Air inside a home naturally flows from ground to sky. Your home loses 70% of its energy through the attic and roof which is far more than is lost through windows or doors.

A final factor in saving energy is R-value. R-value is a measure of the amount of heat flow a product resists. The higher the R-value, the better it reduces heat transfer. The R-value of windows can vary from about 1.5 to 2 based on the number of panes, air space between panes, etc. Upgrading attic insulation to current code results in an R-38. Add this R-value with the prior data about heat flow in a home and it’s easy to see why a fresh blanket of insulation is a great investment.

When looking at the bottom line, the choice is clear. According to Home Advisor, the average cost to upgrade windows in our area is $5,372. The same report shows the average cost to upgrade fiberglass insulation in our area (before air sealing) is $1,511.

Ready to add insulation to your attic? Contact us to schedule your free estimate.





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Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Three Ways to Make Your Home More Efficient

Three Ways to Make Your Home More Efficient

Would you like to make your home more comfortable and efficient? Advancements in building science make it easier than ever to improve the efficiency of your home. A home energy audit can uncover specific upgrades that may benefit you.

Some upgrades that could benefit most homes in the Mid Atlantic:

Air Sealing

Air leaks in your home’s envelope can affect heating and cooling efficiency, energy bills and comfort.  Sealing air leaks is a first step to improve your home’s energy efficiency. Air sealing involves sealing any penetration points where air can escape from your home. Air leaks can exist around recessed lighting, chimneys, ductwork and windows. Sealing these air leaks helps keep conditioned air inside your home, reduces wear and tear on your HVAC system, and maintains your home’s internal temperature.

Insulation

Many homes – even newer homes – aren’t adequately insulated. Older homes may have no insulation at all. Properly installed insulation in attics, walls and floors creates a thermal blanket that prevents heat transfer. This helps sustain even temperatures throughout the house. The result is a quieter, more comfortable living environment that is less costly to heat and cool.

Home Technology Upgrades

Many homeowners aren’t aware of how home technology can help maintain comfort and manage energy bills. There are many options for decreasing energy use including controlling lights at home through a mobile app and investing in smart appliances that cut down on energy use and costs.

Improving your home’s efficiency will pay off in lower energy bills and a more comfortable home all year. Have questions? Contact our office.







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Tuesday, May 22, 2018
Southland Insulators: America's Green Insulator

Southland Insulators: America's Green Insulator

America's Green Insulator - Southland Insulators
When you think of the construction industry, what is one thing that comes to mind? If it's garbage and construction scrap, you are not alone. According to the EPA, renovation of existing structures and keeping them up to date generates over 40 percent of total construction and demolition debris. 

The amount of plastic in use is staggering. Since the 1950s over 9 billion tons of plastic have been made. In fact, one estimate indicates the amount of plastic currently in use is 30 percent of all plastic ever produced. If you think all this plastic is being recycled, think again. Only 9 percent of all plastic waste is recycled.

In 1998 our leaders instituted a recycling program - far before  "going green" was popular. The goal of the program was to dramatically reduce the waste generated through insulation projects - and we've done just that! To date, our program has sent over 1 million pounds of plastic for recycling - that's 1 million pounds of plastic kept out of landfills!

America's Green Insulator - Southland Insulators
Our extensive recycling program includes:
  • Our team bringing back all trash and scraps from jobs they install, rather than filling a dumpster at the project location. 
  • Fiberglass insulation pieces are separated from other scrap. These pieces are ground up to make blowing wool for installation in attics.
  • Cardboard is separated and compacted for recycling.
  • Through our partnership with Rewall, the plastic bags from our batt and blown-in fiberglass insulation is recycled into interior wallboard.
  • The 50-gallon steel drums from their foam division is dripped dry and crushed to six inches high and recycled as scrap steel.
  • All wood pallets received from various manufacturers are returned to Greenfiber, a cellulose insulation manufacturer, to reload their product on for future deliveries.
  • We regularly deliver loads of 5,000 to 8,000 pounds of plastic from insulation packaging to recycling centers rather than to landfills.

America's Green Insulator - Southland Insulators
Interested in seeing this first hand? We welcome the public to visit our location to learn more about our recycling program. To schedule a tour, please call during normal business hours.











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Monday, April 16, 2018
Why Spray Foam?

Why Spray Foam?

If you are not familiar with the benefits of spray foam insulation, we are here to help! Like other insulation products such as fiberglass insulation and cellulose insulation, spray foam insulation reduces heat transfer between spaces in a home. Spray foam insulation goes one step further by sealing air leaks to prevent conditioned air from escaping.

Why does this matter?

Air leaks exist around the building envelope – the outermost layer of the home (exterior walls, rooflines, etc.). Air leaks through penetration points that are found around recessed lights, plumbing stacks, electrical wires, attic hatches/doors, chimneys and more. Sealing air leaks keeps conditioned air inside your home. When these air leaks are sealed, conditioned air you’ve already paid for stays in your home. This results in your HVAC system working less, which keeps money in your pocket.

When installing spray foam insulation, the building cavity is insulated and air sealed in one pass. This means one installation provides a thermal barrier and seals penetration points. Air sealing can be performed in combination with other types of insulation, requiring additional labor on the project. If not applied precisely, air sealing won’t have the desired effect. With one spray foam application, you are assured air leaks are completely sealed.

Have other questions about spray foam? Contact our office today!









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Wednesday, March 28, 2018
Camden Washingtonian Chooses Southland Insulators

Camden Washingtonian Chooses Southland Insulators

As the Mid-Atlantic’s largest independent insulation contractor, Southland Insulators has had the pleasure of working on some of the largest construction projects in the region. We were recently honored with being contracted for the insulation work on the Camden Washingtonian condominium community. Located in Gaithersburg, Maryland, Camden Washingtonian is a project being constructed by Camden Development. Camden prides itself on developing properties that exceed market expectations – their selected insulation package is no exception.

Camden Washingtonian contains 365 condo units. Southland Insulators air sealed each unit to increase energy efficiency. After air sealing each unit, our team installed fiberglass batts in all exterior, demising and corridor walls. Our team filled the interstitial space between the floors and the ceiling with fiberglass batts to help reduce noise transfer. As a final step, spray foam insulation was applied to the loading dock and trash room ceilings.

We are proud to partner with another company that believes in going above and beyond for its customers. Visit this link to learn more about Camden Washingtonian. If you would like to work with the area’s premier insulation contractor, click here to connect with our team.





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Monday, February 19, 2018
Don’t DIY Your Insulation – Why to Hire an Insulation Contractor!

Don’t DIY Your Insulation – Why to Hire an Insulation Contractor!

Many homeowners tackle their own home improvement projects. With many resources available including retail stores and online videos, homeowners may feel confident enough to take on almost any project. When it comes to installing or upgrading home insulation, it’s best to hire a professional insulation contractor.

Here are three reasons why you should hire a professional insulation contractor:

  1. Proper Installation. Without proper installation techniques, insulation will not perform efficiently. A professional insulation contractor has the experience and training to competently install insulation to maximize performance, attic venting to optimize airflow and air sealing to reduce outside air infiltration.
  2. Building Code and Building Science Knowledge. Hiring a professional insulation contractor gives you access to a wide array of knowledge and training. Professional insulation contractors stay current on local building codes, new insulation technologies and installation methods to be sure your home is correctly insulated and as energy efficient as possible.
  3. Safety. A professional insulation contractor conducts safety training for its installer team. Effective safety training reduces the risk of a workplace injury. A professional insulation contractor is trained to spot other hazards such as wiring issues, including knob and tube, installing around combustible materials and more.

Don’t let the perceived cost savings of DIY insulation cost more in the long run. Hire a professional insulation contractor and have the job done right the first time! Our office provides free estimates. Call today to schedule yours!





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Monday, January 15, 2018
Considering Home Improvements? Insulation Rates Highest in ROI

Considering Home Improvements? Insulation Rates Highest in ROI

Remodeling Magazine ranked “adding attic insulation” as the top “bang for the buck” home improvement project in 2017. The report included the 29 top remodeling projects done in a home, ranking average cost against return on investment during resale.

The 2017 Cost vs. Value Report shows adding attic insulation delivers over a 100% return on investment – the only home project that returns more than the project cost. The second place return-on-investment project, replacing a front entry door, came in at just over 90% return on investment.

Visit Remodeling Magazine’s report for more information and to see how other projects rank.


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Monday, January 8, 2018
Three Questions to Ask Your Commercial Insulation Contractor

Three Questions to Ask Your Commercial Insulation Contractor

Commercial Building Construction
With the scale of a commercial project, each decision becomes even more important – including choosing the right insulation contractor. Making a poor choice can affect construction schedules, energy bills, and the comfort of occupants. Selecting the best commercial insulation contractor can make the construction process easier and save headaches down the road.

To help ensure you’re hiring the right commercial insulation company for your next project, ask these questions:
  • What is your commercial insulation experience? Commercial insulation is a specialty. It’s important to know when you hire a commercial insulator that the company has experience in commercial insulation. The right commercial insulation contractor should confidently answer questions about fire ratings, codes, etc.
  • What product and technology training do you receive? A savvy commercial insulation contractor will recommend new technologies for your project that can help improve performance, acoustics, aesthetics and more. A professional commercial insulation contractor will be up to date on product and installation trends and be able to recommend solutions to make your project even better.
  • How large is your installer base? Don’t wait until scheduling day to find out if your commercial insulation contractor has the installer base to complete your job on schedule. Ask your contractor about the size of their installer base. You might also consider asking about their track record of completing commercial insulation projects on time.

Southland Insulators provides a wide range of commercial insulation products and installation techniques to fit any commercial insulation project. Our commercial insulation services and products include sound control, stick pin application, commercial spray foam insulation, fiberglass insulation, TBB for use with Icynene closed-cell spray foam and more. We insulate parking garage ceilings, multifamily buildings, schools, municipal buildings and many other commercial applications. Our large installer base and commercial insulation experience make us the right choice to be your commercial insulation contractor. Contact our office to discuss your next commercial construction project.





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