Insulation: Batts, Blankets and Rolls

Insulation | Rolls, Blankets and Batts Insulation Batts, blankets and rolls are made of mineral fibers, such as fiberglass and rock wool. This is the most familiar form of insulation, that is traditionally added when homes are constructed. Since fiber glass does not absorb moisture, the insulation will not hold water, preventing permanent loss of R-value. When properly installed, the batts, blankets and rolls types of insulation will not settle or deteriorate, meaning they will retain their insulating value.

They are available in widths suited to standard spacings of wall studs and attic or floor joists: 2x4 walls can hold R-13 or R-15 batts; 2x6 walls can have R-19 or R-21 products.

These batts, rolls and blankets of insulation are:

  • Thermally efficient to help fight rising utility bills
  • Lightweight and flexible for easy installation
  • Good sound absorption; reducing noise level wherever applied
  • Inorganic glass fiber is non corrosive; it will not rot or mildew or otherwise deteriorate
  • Do not absorb moisture
  • Noncombustible per ASTM E 136 (unfaced only)

Batts are precut, whereas blankets are available in continuous rolls. Compressing the material reduces its effectiveness. Cutting it to accommodate electrical boxes and other obstructions allows air a free path to cross through the wall cavity.

Types of Batts, Blankets and Rolls Insulation

Rock and slag wool

Usually made from rock (basalt, diabase) or iron ore blast furnace slag. Some rock wool contains recycled glass. Nonflammable.


Fiberglass

Made from molten glass, usually with 20% to 30% recycled industrial waste and post-consumer content. Nonflammable, except for the facing (if present). Sometimes, the manufacturer modifies the facing so that it is fire-resistant. Some fiberglass is unfaced, some is paper-faced with a thin layer of asphalt, and some is foil-faced. Paper-faced batts are vapor retarders, not vapor barriers. Foil-faced batts are vapor barriers. The vapor barrier must face the proper direction.


High-density fiberglass

Sources: http://insulation.owenscorning.com/professionals/insulation-products/r-19-fiberglass-insulation.aspx,
http://www.energysavers.gov/tips/insulation.cfm,
http://www.certainteed.com/products/insulation/fiber-glass-insulation/batts---rolls/317351,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Building_insulation_materials
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