They are Definitely Not the Same: The Different Types of Insulation and Their Pros and Cons:

According to studies and the Department of Energy, homeowners can save money on their energy consumption and maintain their homes’ comfort with properly installed home insulation. However, it is important to note that different thermal insulation materials have different elemental advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Different Types of Insulation:

At Synergy, we want homeowners to find the best type of insulation that suits their needs. Below is a chart that breaks down the pros and cons of each type of insulation.

Types of InsulationInsulation Sub-TypesR-ValueInsulation Types and CostAdvantagesDisadvantages
Batting Insulation/ Blanket InsulationFiberglass Batting Insulation3 – 4 per inch30 cents/ sq.ft.– readily available

– easy to transport and install

– inexpensive

– itchy to install insulation

– must be cut to fit crevices

Rockwool Batting Insulation4 – 5 per inch60 cents/ sq. ft.– easy to transport and install

-not itchy to install insulation

-fire resistant

– may retain moisture

– mold growth- prone

– not always available

– cut-to-fit

Cotton Batting Insulation3.5 – 4 per inch90 cents/ sq.ft.– no-itch installation

– easy to handle, transport, and cut

– has fire retardant properties

– deters insect burying

– pricier

– not always available

Loose Fill Insulation/ Blow in InsulationFiberglass Loose Fill Insulation2.2 – 2.7 per inch30 cents/cu.ft.– light weight

– prevents cold spots

– fits crevices well

– may lose effectiveness in colder temperatures

– needs blanket insulation on top

-installation requires special equipment

Cellulose Loose Fill Insulation3.2 – 3.8 per inch31 cents/ cu.ft.– effective regardless of temperature

– performs better in cold temperatures

– too heavy as attic insulation

– may not be applicable for dry walls and framing less than 5/8” and 16”

– can lose effectiveness overtime

Structural Insulated Panels/ Rigid Insulation/ Foam Board InsulationPolystyrene Foam Board Insulation3.8 – 5 per inch$6/ 1” 4 x 8 ft. board to $15/ 1” 4 x 8 ft. board– light

– easy to install

– inexpensive

– sturdy

– effectively blocks moisture

– has to be installed in new walls, ceilings, and attics

– must be cut to fit

-low r value

– insect-prone

– insecticide treatment needed

Polyisocyanurate Foam Board Insulation5.6 – 7.7 per inch$22/ 1” 4 x 8 ft. board– light

– easy to install

– very high r value

– has moisture barrier

– pricey

– cut-to-fit

Spray Foam InsulationOpen Cell Spray Foam Insulation3.5 – 3.6 per inch$1 to $1.20/ sq. ft.– high r value

– prevents weatherizing

– prevents air leaks

-fits crevices well

– stops air movement

– does not block moisture

– moisture barrier needed

– heavy

– installation requires specialequipment

Closed Cell Spray Foam insulation6 – 6.5 per inch$1.75 to $3/ sq.ft.– high r value

– prevents weatherizing

– prevents air leaks

-fits crevices well

– stops air and moisture

– pricier

– heavier

– installation requires specialequipment for installation


Installing Home Insulation

Homeowners can always choose to install insulation themselves. However, improperly installed insulation materials may cost them more than they can save. When it comes to installing insulation, it is better to rely on the help of an experienced and trustworthy insulation contractor or insulation company.