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Identifying Potentially Toxic Old Insulation

Insulation is an essential building block of your house. It doesn’t only help make your home warmer during winter and cooler during summer, but it also helps protect your health and even save on utility bills. However, that’s if it works properly.

Insulation should be updated once in a while, or it becomes a health hazard. So, let’s see why it is such a good idea to get one of the insulation companies in NJ to inspect your home thoroughly.

Identifying Potentially Toxic Old Insulation

Which insulation types are toxic?

In general, most older insulation types (e.g., those used up to 15 years ago) contain some toxic materials, even if just traces. The older they are, the bigger the danger—for example,  insulation in homes built before the 1990s.

Here, the most commonly used insulating materials in attics were asbestos and urea-formaldehyde based, both of which are banned from use today due to their extreme toxicity. However, some older homes still sport them, even after all this time, and despite this fact.

Also, It’s essential to note insulation itself does not have to be toxic on its own to cause problems. Damaged, deteriorated, or improperly installed insulation can create many issues and potential health hazards.

How to recognize if insulation is toxic?

There are several tell-tale signs that your insulation is potentially toxic and in dire need of a re-do. The most common ones are:

  • Visible damage: Sometimes, it doesn’t take an expert to determine if your insulation is ready for a makeover. And by “makeover,” we mean “replacement.” Sometimes, you must take the trip to the attic and check for signs of wear and tear. If there is visible damage, patches of materials missing (or even full sheets), there’s a good chance the decay process is well underway, thus, releasing toxins all over your air supply.
  • Water damage: Decayed insulation leads to leaks which, in turn, speed up the decay. It is a vicious circle – and one that can deteriorate your health, too, and in several ways. First, the degradation of insulation fibers makes it easier for toxic particles to get into the air naturally or, primarily, via your HVAC system. 

Second, mold. It looks horrendous, and mold can be a health hazard. It can cause or exacerbate allergies and cause respiratory infections leading to permanent damage and chronic health issues.

  • Pest infestation: One of the biggest reasons to replace old insulation is its innate potential for pest infestation. Decaying insulation attracts various insects, birds, and rodents. The latter two can be especially dangerous, as they are known carriers of over 200 diseases and parasites, some of which can be lethal to humans.

Of course, as we mentioned, if your home is pre-90s, there is a good chance it’s still boasting older, dangerous insulation types. To ensure your safety, it is best to hire a licensed insulation contractor to do a thorough inspection, as your health can depend on it. Also, they will give you the best advice on preparing your attic for insulation and when is the best time to insulate your home, which will save you a lot of time, energy, and money.

Which insulation types are toxic

Which of the insulation companies in NJ should I hire to make my home safe?

Allied Experts are your top choice if you’re looking for reliable, high-quality insulation work for your home. For years we’ve been Cherry Hill and 130+ NJ municipalities’ go-to option for everything relating to home energy efficiency.

Give us a call today and have our NATE-certified technicians assess your home’s insulation quality and energy efficiency to ensure your well-being and that of your household members.

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