It doesn’t have to flood to cause a lot of damage to your home or property. Even an inch of water can lead to severe damage that may end up to thousands of dollars for repairs. What could even more troublesome, is when water gets into the walls of the structure of your home, it can lead to different sets of problems like problems with air conditioning, electrical, heating systems and even with your home’s insulation.
Insulation in your home functions to provide proper heat resistance flow and helps lower your cooling and heating cost. However, home insulation can also be vulnerable to water damage and may or may not need replacement. To know more if you can dry or replace wet insulation and its ill -effects, you may continue reading.
How Does Insulation Work
In winter, heat travels directly from warm spaces like your home to unheated spaces and outdoor areas. In summer, heat moves from the outdoor to cool spaces like inside your home. Insulation works to slow down heat transfer from a hot area to a cool area. Moreover, it also helps lessen your home’s energy efficiency by containing the heat in your home during winter and keeping it cool during summer months.
Can Water Damaged Insulation Be Saved
There are different types of insulation. The most common ones are cellulose insulation and fiberglass batt insulation. Inspecting the type of insulation present is vital to evaluate if it can be salvaged or not. Yet, there is no guarantee that any type of insulation can be salvaged. Oftentimes, water-damage insulation must be removed and replaced because restoring it is mostly impossible most especially if category 2 or 3 water damage is involved.
Moreover, leaving wet insulation in your home can lead to further damage like mold infestation and structural damage.
Wet cellulose insulation has the ability to absorb water for a long time and shows no ill effects. However, when this type of insulation has become completely saturated, it will resist drying and there are no other visible options but only replacement. Water damaged cellulose insulation can degrade the wooden structure of the affected area and may cause mold growth.
Fiberglass Batts Insulation
Depending on the severity of the damage, affected materials and the length of time water has set in, oftentimes, fiberglass batts insulation can be saved. However, if mold has started to grow in this type of insulation, it has to be removed. Furthermore, the process of drying wet fiberglass batts insulation is labor-intensive, yet this type of insulation is relatively cheap. That is why instead of salvaging wet and probably contaminated insulation, it is better to have them removed and replaced with new materials.
The Effects Of Wet Insulation
The first victim of a damaged roof or a leaking pipe in your attic is your insulation. Any type of insulation can be vulnerable to water damage. While it is possible to dry out and re-use water-damaged insulation, retaining it can lead to several issues;
- Reduced or Loss Efficiency Value – Once the insulation is saturated with water, it loses its main function; inhibiting heat transfer. Wet insulation can usually lose up to 40% of its R-value which can lead to a significant increase in your energy bill.
Fiberglass insulation is waterproof, however, it loses its thermal resistance properties when it stays wet or moisture retains in the thick batts. On the other hand, cellulose insulation can absorb a big volume of water. Eventually, cellulose insulation compacts and loses its insulation value.
- Mold Growth – Mold growth can always be the aftermath of water damage. It also occurs when your insulation has experienced water damage.
Mold will not form on cellulose insulation because of borate chemicals treatment. However, its capacity to absorb water can still lead to a major mold growth problem. Once the cellulose insulation becomes wet, it acts as a sponge and affects the adjacent wooden structure from the attic to the drywall ceiling underneath. This can lead to mold growth and cause severe damage to the building materials. Differently, fiberglass insulation can trap dust that contains airborne mold spores. When these spores are exposed to moisture, they will eventually grow and thrive and affect the backing of fiberglass batts.
Contact Superior Flood and Fire Restoration For Insulation Removal and Replacement
Water can lead to costly repairs of your home’s insulation. In some cases, the damage can hide there for a long time and eventually affect the surrounding infrastructure. Not to mention the possibility of mold growth that can pose harm to you and your property. Different kinds of insulation may require different treatments. Otherwise, any newly discovered water damage insulation needs immediate attention.
Let Superior Flood and Fire Restoration handle your water damaged insulation. Before we replace your insulation, we will address the root cause of water damage and ensure that the surrounding areas are free from any contaminants, like dust, rodents or mold growth. Our service guarantees that your home will have a healthy-quality air and your insulation will function appropriately. To know more about our service, please contact us today.