As the country experiences record-breaking temperatures this summer, people are looking for affordable ways to keep cool. The radiant energy that the sun produces conducts heat into a house primarily through the roofing, walls, and windows. When the heat travels through the roof, it spreads to cool surfaces in the attic, which includes the air ducts and attic floor. An attic radiant barrier is a fast, inexpensive way to keep temperatures in the home lower and save on energy bills.
The team at Americover are leading experts in US manufactured plastic sheeting for construction use, with the ability to provide the best products that meet your specifications. An effective installation starts with safety, high quality materials, and the right tools. Below are our tips for buying and installing a radiant barrier in your attic.
Safety Tips for Installing Attic Radiant Barriers
Proper installation is the key to an effective radiant barrier, which is why we highly recommend choosing a certified installer, but it’s not uncommon for experienced DIYers to install it themselves. According to Daniel Mergens, Account Manager at Americover – a leading plastic sheeting supplier in the US – “When properly installed in a hot climate, radiant barriers can reduce the workload on your HVAC system, and potentially save on energy costs.”
Before diving into the installation process, it’s crucial to prioritize safety by choosing the right protective gear, properly ventilating your workspace, and avoiding hazards like electrical wires. Here are a few key safety considerations to keep in mind:
When working in the attic, wear long sleeves, gloves, safety goggles, and a dust mask to protect yourself from insulation fibers and other potential hazards.
Ensure Proper Ventilation
Attics can become extremely hot, especially during the summer months. Work during cooler hours or consider using fans or temporary ventilation to maintain a comfortable working environment.
Be Cautious with Electrical Components
If your attic has electrical wiring or fixtures, exercise caution to avoid damaging them during installation. Turn off the power supply to the attic before beginning the project and work around wiring with care.
Attics may have low-hanging beams, miscellaneous nails, and unstable flooring. Making a wrong step can result in puncturing yourself or falling through the roof. Examine the area carefully before beginning the installation process.
Radiant Barrier Installation Tips
Once you have secured a safe working environment, use these simplified tips to guide you through the installation of an attic radiant barrier:
Calculate the Required Amount of Sheeting
Determine the square footage of your attic space and add an additional 25% to account for overlaps and waste. This will ensure you have enough radiant barrier material to cover the entire area effectively.
Use the Right Tools
Consider investing in a cordless staple gun for easy installation. It will save you time and effort when securing the radiant barrier to the attic structure. Additionally, don’t forget to use proper fall protection measures, such as a harness or safety ropes, especially if you’re working on elevated areas.
Work in Sections
Start from the top of your attic and work your way down. Ensure that the reflective side faces the open attic space. Staple one side of the radiant barrier at a time, making sure to overlap the material adequately. This will prevent any gaps and ensure maximum coverage.
It’s essential to avoid blocking vents and allow proper airflow in your attic during and after the installation. Blocking vents can restrict ventilation and lead to moisture buildup, which may cause mold or other issues in the long run.
Preserve Existing Insulation
While installing the radiant barrier, take care not to compress or damage the existing insulation in your attic. Properly installed radiant barriers can work in tandem with insulation to achieve optimal energy efficiency.
Choosing the Best Radiant Barrier for Your Project
Installing an attic radiant barrier can be a worthwhile investment, providing long-term energy savings and improved home comfort because they reflect heat rather than absorb it. Below are the Americover products we suggest:
Super R Plus® Radiant Barriers with reinforced scrim reflect radiant heat for roofing systems, new or retrofit house-wraps, radiant heat flooring, and OEMs.
Super R Diamond® Radiant Barriers is a double-sided aluminized film with polyester scrim reinforcement used to reflect radiant heat for roofing systems, new or retrofit house-wraps, radiant heat flooring, and OEMs.
TempShield® Single Bubble Reflective Insulation is used to reduce radiant heat transfer when wrapped around hot water heaters, pipes, metal and commercial buildings, stud walls, roofing systems, and more.
TempShield® Double Bubble Foil Reflective Insulation is used as an insulator, reflector, and vapor retarder for water heaters, metal and commercial buildings, stud walls, roofing systems, and more.
Trusted by Builders,Growers, and Distributors
Remember, it’s always beneficial to consult professionals or refer to manufacturer guidelines for specific product recommendations and detailed installation instructions. The experts at Americover can help you find the right product for your needs. Trusted by contractors and distributors across the construction and agriculture industries, our American-made products combine reliability with quality and innovation.
As an Americover customer, you will receive the personalized support of a dedicated account manager to simplify the ordering process and ensure the best solution for every one of your projects. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff is here to answer your questions and fulfill orders Monday-Friday from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Pacific Standard Time. If you would like to speak with a representative contact us or call us at 760-388-6294.