Figuring out your home insulation options can be confusing. There are a lot of variables to consider. In this post, we’ll explain the basics of a common type of insulation – batt insulation.
What is Batt Insulation?
Batts are a form of insulation that are pre-cut in flat pieces. They resemble a small blanket. Most common forms of insulation come in batts – fiberglass, mineral wool, sheep’s wool. Typically batts come in bags and they’re sized to fit into standard cavities. Batt widths vary from 3.5 inches (for a 2×4 cavity) to 5.5 inches (for a 2×6 cavity), though they can be thicker. The batt length is normally 48 inches though sometimes you’ll see 96 inches. Manufacturers will note how many square feet each bag of batts covers.
How Do You Install Batt Insulation?
The pre-cut sizes of batts make them relatively easy to install. Simply remove the batt and stick it into your wall (or ceiling or attic), secure it and you’re basically done. You will need to cut around things like electrical boxes and for that a good insulation cutter is useful. Now depending on the insulation material, you may also need to wear protective clothing while you do the installation. Fiberglass is a major irritant to the eyes, skin and respiratory system, which is why you need to be very careful. Same goes for mineral wool. Conversely, natural fibers that do not irritate don’t require a mask, etc. which makes installation easier and less dangerous. See this short video here for Batt Installation.
What is the R-Value of Batt Insulation?
R-Value refers to the thermal conductivity of insulation. The higher the R-Value, the better it insulates. The R-Values of batts depends on the material used and thickness of the product so you will see a wide range. When looking at R-Value, we like to assess on R-Value per inch so you can compare on thermal conductivity, not the amount of insulation used. A higher R-Value per inch requires less insulation to achieve the same overall R-Value. The R-Value per inch for batt insulation ranges from 2.1 to 3.6. Note this is generally less than what you’ll see with various forms of loose-fill insulation.
The Benefits of Batt Insulation
The main benefit of batt insulation is ease of install. You can specify batt dimensions for your project making the installation process easy, whether you are a professional or DIY’er. Batts also insulate well, as measured by R-Value.