Just as there is a wide assortment of material available for roofing, there is an equally wide assortment of roofing insulation. Although it may seem as if any type will do, this is not correct. Insulation must be chosen according to function as well as in conjunction with the type of roof and material used. Asking an expert roofer to come and inspect the existing insulation is a good idea to be sure that the entire roofing system is performing to its fullest with the correct thermal protection. If it is not, suggestions can be given as to which type to use in order to get the best results.
The most common types of rigid insulation used for a roof include the following:
- Wood Fiber – Made of organic material, wood fiber board is created using wood and plant fibers made into boards by using various binders and fillers. This material has a higher strength/durability rating, so it is sometimes coated with asphalt to make it more moisture-proof with a low to medium R-value. Best of all, it is a natural product.
- Perlite – This type of thermal protection is created with perlite (inorganic volcanic glass) mixed with organic fibers and binders, making it another more natural option. It has a similar R-value as wood fiber, although its strength/durability rating is about half. Perlite is also frequently coated with asphalt to act as a moisture retardant.
- Polystyrene – A chemically-created compound, polystyrene insulation is available in two types, extruded and expanded. Extruded polystyrene is a compound that is put through a heating and extruding process that expands to create molded polystyrene. It has a medium R-value and a varied strength, from extremely low to fairly high. Expanded polystyrene is a compound that is impregnated with an expander which creates the molded polystyrene. Its R-value is about twenty-five percent less than extruded and its strength is very low. Both are low in price and very cost-effective.
- Polyisocyanurate – This is a layered insulator that is comprised of a foam plastic material which is affixed between layers of felt, fiber or fiberglass/foil for strength and added performance. The R-value for polyisocyanurate is fairly high, though its strength/durability is low to medium.
- Cellular Glass – This is insulation made from crushed glass and foam which is heated to create a substance of molded closed-cell glass. During the heating process, the foam material is destroyed, leaving thermal cells behind. Cellular glass has a medium R-value and a high strength/durability rating.
- Gypsum Board – This is a widely-used material which is non-combustible and water-resistant, frequently used as a top layer over other types of rigid insulation or over a vapor barrier. Gypsum board itself has a low R-value, though it works well in boosting other methods. Its is extremely high strength.
- Composite – This is a layered type of rigid board which combines multiple types of insulation into one board, such as polystyrene and wood fiber composite. Its R-value and strength will depend on the combination of materials.
With different strengths and weaknesses, each of these popular types of rigid deck insulation are appropriate for roofing applications based on variables such as climate, home construction and many other factors. Using more than one of these options together can be a good option as well, combining the best properties of each. Some type of roof deck insulation is always necessary in order to have the most energy-efficient home. Combined with appropriate methods of attic insulation and ventilation, utility bills can be kept to a minimum. Contacting a reputable contractor to discuss needs and the endless roofing insulation options is the first step that should be taken to determine the best of all available choices!
Call Schulte Roofing When In Need of College Station Roof Repair!
Do you need to find a College Station roof repair company to help with insulation? Schulte Roofing at 800-367-7663 can help all College Station area customers with insulation and other roofing needs!