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Our Guide to Winter Insulation & Roofing Projects

30 November 2019

Our team answers homeowner questions every weekend on WCCO 830 AM from 9:00 am-10:00 am.  Have your most pressing home improvement questions addressed by calling or texting 651-989-9226.  Here’s the must-know information our COO, Andy Lindus, shared on 11.30.19.

Homeowners concerned about ice dams are wise to seek the services of a reputable contractor that can perform diagnostic testing to identify deficiencies within a home’s insulation, ventilation, and attic air sealing.  While raking a roof a foot above a home’s interior walls can provide relief, it is not a permanent solution.  The tools quality insulation professionals utilize often vary by the time of the year.  In the summer months, the use of a blower door is beneficial.  A blower door looks like a screen door with a built-in fan.  This tool allows a contractor to change the pressure within a house and magnify home energy efficiency issues. Blower door testing works well during seasons where there is minimal difference between the home’s interior temperature and the outdoor one.  However, in the winter months, a blower door test often isn’t needed because of the dramatic temperature difference between indoors and outdoors. In the winter months, infrared imaging can easily identify the notable temperature differences throughout a home.  Smoke sticks to highlight drafty areas of the home work particularly well in the winter because air pressure differences between indoors and outdoors are more prevalent.

Learn More About Blower Door Testing: 

Many homeowners are surprised to learn that even homes less than 20 years old can benefit from attic air sealing and additional insulation.  This is due to the fact that insulation can shift and building codes meet the bare minimum requirements and is often not best practice.  Fortunately, insulation professionals can work year-round to create more comfortable homes.  Although spray foam insulation has temperature stipulations, contractors can bring in space heaters to bring the attic to the necessary temperature.  Without this, the foam may not correctly adhere to the wood.  Homeowners having spray foam insulation installed must evacuate their homes for 24 hours.  This is because there is a curing process associated with spray foam insulation and during that time, spray foam insulates potent odors that are harmful if inhaled.

spray foam insulation

Unlike insulation, asphalt roof installation should take into consideration exterior air temperatures.  It’s best practice to wait until spring.  However, in emergency situations, new asphalt roofing can be installed in the winter with the proper precautionary measures taken.  One example is the hand sealing of shingles so that they adhere to the roof and lie flat.  Shingles must also be warmed to the temperature stipulated by the manufacturer for the warranty to remain intact.  This can be done by stacking shingles in an ice shack with air space in between them with a contractor grade heater running in the ice shack.  Without this, shingles may not lay as flat as they should, and nail gun blow-outs increase.  Experienced roofing contractors also understand that nail guns must be set properly for winter roof installation.


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