UNDERSTANDING INSULATION VALUES
The “R” value of an insulating material, by itself, is not an accurate measurement of insulating effectiveness.
Tests performed by the Oak Ridge National Laboratories (federally funded tests) prove that the “R” value of some insulating materials are reduced by standard installation techniques and age. When measured by Oak Ridge, Fiberglass Batts labeled as R19 when installed in walls, using common installation procedures, measured a R11. Also Oak Ridge measured “R” value in cold temperatures (0 degrees F) and R38 fiberglass batts measured R17.7 – a loss of 53% of the R factor.
New research from Oak Ridge National Laboratories (ORNL) confirms that fiberglass batts in 2” x 4” and 2” x 6” walls provide much less than their stated R-Value. Many builders and homeowners are considering other insulation systems that deliver substantially better performance.
EVEN PERFECT INSTALLATIONS SUFFER
The research team at ORNL’s Building Technology Center first tested “perfectly installed” batts. The batts were precisely cut and perfectly fit to create an ideal situation. Even when installed in this manner, the R-19 batts mustered only an R-13.2 insulation value!
THE REAL WORLD
When the research team installed the batts according to common building practices, the performance was even more disastrous. The tests show that in REAL homes, an R-19 batt only provides an R-Value of R-10.3.