Does Attic Insulation Affect Home Air Quality?

If you're sneezing or suffering from allergies, the cause might come as a surprise. We look at how your attic insulation can affect the air quality of your home.

You probably don't give much thought to the relationship between quality air & insulation. In the end, the only reason to insulate your home is so that your heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC system) don’t have to work as hard during the summer, right?

However, there's more to indoor insulation than common knowledge tells us. First, it's not only a summer or winter essential; insulation plays a pivotal role throughout the year in maintaining consistent temperatures in your house by preventing conditioned air from escaping during the winter and heat from entering during the summer. It also prevents outside allergens and dust from entering the home and excess moisture from introducing mold and other pathogens.

Despite its many benefits, one fear amongst consumers is whether or not insulation can hurt you. The truth is that while some insulation is better than no insulation, inadequate or poorly-installed insulation in the house may have a detrimental impact on your indoor air quality and potentially increase the number of health risks you may experience.

If your old batt fiberglass insulation or blown-in insulation has declined to the point that it is negatively affecting your indoor air quality, then it is likely harming the general comfort of your house as well. These are but some of the reasons why you should consider inspecting your current insulation quality and upgrading to higher-quality insulation.

Temperatures inside your home will be more stable if you have new, properly installed insulation as well as supportive ventilation systems in place. You will also spend less money throughout the year on your air conditioning and protect your HVAC unit, pipes, and ductwork from wear and tear. Lastly, you will noticeably improve the indoor air quality in your home. 

Why Is Air Quality Important?

Both no insulation and bad insulation affect the overall air quality of your home. Therefore, properly insulating your home can prevent air pollution. No one should have to live in a polluted environment.

Asbestos-contaminated vermiculite insulation may be well-known, but it isn't the primary source of poor indoor air pollution in older residential and commercial buildings.

Any and all deteriorating types of insulation lead to an unwanted increase in airborne dust and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). In older houses, outdated insulation can also exacerbate allergy symptoms and reactions.

Can insulation cause breathing problems? Not only breathing issues, but damp insulation with mold growth can cause dry skin and irritation, watery, itchy, and dry eyes, nose and throat irritation, and coughing, wheezing, and sneezing.

Unsealed air leaks are entryways for pathogens, mold, and allergens to enter your home as well. Sealing and ventilating your attic can improve the health and well-being of those living inside your home.

Poor Insulation Vs. Good Insulation

What does bad insulation look like? How about good insulation? Let's find out their differences and effects on the air quality of your home. 

When the insulation in your house is adequate and your home is energy-efficient, you will have reduced monthly energy costs, and the temperature in your home will also be much more stable. You also won't have to worry about waking up with a stuffy nose or coughing throughout the night.

You will lessen the likelihood of water leaks in the attic and the ensuing water damage. Additionally, you won't have to deal with the hassle of frozen and broken pipes. The formation of ice dams will no longer be an issue.

If you wake up in the winter having to tiptoe over your ice-cold kitchen floor or if you find yourself turning up the air conditioning on a summer day that isn't very warm, it may be time to improve your insulation. There is a widespread misunderstanding that only homeowners of older houses in cooler areas have to deal with insulation problems.

Insulation upgrades are beneficial for homes of all ages and cities, especially in Dallas. These improvements protect a home from the scorching sun, chilly winds, increased energy bills, and even the growth of mold and mildew within the walls.

As for the relationship between insulation, air quality, and air pollution, it's a well-known fact that too hot or too cold homes are not healthy. When a house is cold for a long time, condensation, dampness, and mold may grow. These can cause more colds, flu, other respiratory infections, allergies, and skin problems, requiring sick days from work or school and more doctor visits. Some of these conditions can lead to asthma and pneumonia, which are much worse.

In short, bad insulation can make your health care costs more than they should be and hurt your health unnecessarily. And when it gets hotter and colder, you have to pay more for energy to cool and heat your home than you should.  

Signs Of Good Air Quality In Home

Clean, fresh air flow has far-reaching health advantages beyond preserving your lungs and preventing allergic responses. You may be surprised to learn how important clean air is to your daily health. Clean, pure airflow in your house has some little-known advantages: increased happiness, better sleep, improved cognitive health, easier breathing, lower risk of diabetes, better home workouts, anti-aging benefits, and lower risk of heart disease. 


You might have heard that expanding foam is toxic or that any insulation is harmful, regardless if it's considered "good" or "bad." Spray foam insulation and fiberglass insulation are not dangerous in and of themselves, but if homeowners or contractors install them incorrectly, they can add to breathing difficulties. 

Is spray insulation safe? Absolutely. In fact, it has countless benefits, including muffling noise when applied to building materials. The key is to trust your certified attic specialist to diagnose any problems with your current insulation, recommend the kind of insulation that will best meet your specific requirements, and for them to correctly and properly install it.

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