|Environmentally Friendly Insulation
|Insulating your house to reduce the amount
of energy it takes to heat it in cold weather
and cool it in hot weather is an environmentally
sound decision. Insulation should be place
in all external walls and ceilings as a thermal
barrier. Some people, however, are looking
for insulations made from “green” materials
that do not contain the chemicals found in
the most popular insulating products, such
as fiberglass batts or polystyrene polyurethane
and polyisocyanurate foam panels. |
If you are looking for environmentally
insulation, consider the following:
- Mineral wool is made from recycled slag and
mined basalt rock. It is fire resistant,
pest proof, and very sound absorbent. Purchased
as blanket rolls or batting, it does have
the same potential risk for airborne fiber
as fiberglass, but this can be avoided by
obtaining it in a rigid board form.
- Sheep’s wool is sheered from the live animals.
It is cleaned and treated for
moth and mildew
problems, then formed into
either batts or
loose fill. Those who wish
to avoid problems
with allergies or chemical
consider this choice.
- Cotton is also a low chemical choice. All
sorts of cotton clothing, including
jeans, can be shredded to form
batts. These are treated with
safe borates to make them fire
and pest resistant.
- Cellulose insulation is made from shredded
newspapers that have been mixed
This insulation is blown into
walls as either
a dry or damp fluffed up product.
a higher R rating than fiberglass.
- Some types of polyurethane insulation have
recently been manufactured using agricultural
products to replace some of their petroleum
ingredients. Soybeans, sugar cane, and corn
have all been incorporated into these panels.
Not all of these “green” insulation products
are widely available. Some are made by manufacturers
who specialize in environmentally friendly
building materials and may need to be ordered