As the cost of energy to heat and cool one's home increases, people are seeking ways to make their hoses more energy efficient. One method of doing this is installing radiant barriers. This article takes a look at the different types of radiant barriers.
What are radiant barriers?
The name does not imply that the barriers are bright, but that they have reflective surface, or surfaces, which reflect the heat or coolness back into the house, thus preventing them to penetrate to the outside. There is more than one kind of radiant barrier which work well for a variety of applications, from insulating the roof, the walls, or even the floor. The R value of the insulation varies according to the how the radiant barrier is constructed. One-sided foil The first type of radiant barriers is the one-sided foil. As the name implies, this radiant insulation has foil on one side with some other material, such as craft paper or some other material, on the other. Some of the one-sided foil barrier have a reinforcing material added to give it additional strength, which prevents it from ripping. This type of radiant barrier works well in conjunction with other insulation products. One-sided foil can also be attached to roof sheathing, which helps to make the roof all the more energy efficient. This type of roof sheathing is more expensive than basic, conventional roof sheathing.
This radiant insulation has foil on two sides with a reinforcing material in the center such as mylar, cardboard, craft paper, or even webbing made from fiber. Double-sided foil offers more insulating capacity than one-sided foil radiant insulation. This offers more insulating qualities when added to other insulating materials, such as fiberglass, as well.
Multi-layered foil is the most efficient of the radiant insulation as it not only consists of two layers of foil - one on the front and back - but includes and insulating layer in between. The interior layer consists of materials which have air bubbles, such as polyethylene or polyisocyanurate. By having this insulating barrier in the center of the foil, its overall efficiency is increased, making it all the more difficult for air to pass through the barrier. It is possible to use layers of the multi-layered foil to increase the insulation of the building.