The Foratech Isolation team answers your questions!

How do we establish the efficiency of insulant materials?

The R coefficient and its metric equivalent, the RSI coefficient, are used to mark the efficiency of the insulating materials. The higher the R or RSI coefficient, the more resistant to the movement of heat they are. All insulation products sold in Canada wear a R and RSI mark. The provincial construction codes requires a certain minimum R and RSI coefficients for any new constructions, the values varying depending of the applications.It is important to know the requirements of the construction code of your area when planning a construction project.

NOTE: A proper installation of the insulating materials is important to ensure its efficiency. By compacting the insulating, leaving gaps around it or allowing the air flow in the insulating reduces the real insulating value of the insulating materials.

What are the signs of a bad insulation?

-The walls are cold to the touch;
-The floors are cold;
-The heating costs are higher than they should be;
-The heat isn’t distributed equally in all the rooms;
-Molds proliferate on the walls.

-The air inside the house is too hot;
-High air conditioning costs;
-Inefficient air conditioning;
-Molds appear in the basement.

Is it profitable to insulate?

A good insulating system can make you save money, lower your energy consumption and make your house more comfortable. Keep in mind that the installation (including the modifications to the frame, the facing and the finishing coating) is usually the most expensive cost when doing insulation jobs. The local weather conditions also influence the profitability of the operation.

You’ll need to estimate the costs and the possible heat losses and gains in all the possible options. Then, analyze all the details in a way to master all the movements of the humidity. You can then choose the appropriate insulating strategy. In doubt, consult a specialist.

During the last analysis, it is usually profitable to improve the insulation of a poor insulated house. In a new construction, it is simply logical to insulate the building properly so you do’t have to start over later.

What is an efficient insulating system?

Efficient insulating systems slow the movement of heat and restrain the movement of humidity at a reasonable cost.

  • An air barrier to keep inside or outside air from penetrating the system;
  • Well-filled cavities that don’t let any empty space in the insulating or around it, and don’t compact it;
  • Minimal thermal points. In other words, Parts of wall possessing a low R coefficient and extend from the hot side to the cold side of the insulating, allowing the heat to escape easily.  The walls’ structural elements frequently create thermal bridges;
  • A vapor barrier, like a polyethylen membrane, that keep the moisture from going from the warm areas to the colder building envelope, where it could condensate;
  • A drying potential, or the capability of the insulating system to let go of any kind of moisture who enters.

What are the noises and the clues of sound transmission?

To get a better understanding of our needs in soundproofing, we need to establish the noise level in our residence. The noise is measured in decibels. As reference, a jet plane produces somewhere between 120-140dB. A normal conversation produces about 60dB, whereas a fridge produces around 40dB

The goal of soundproofing is to minimize as much as possible the noises who are likely to disturb your acoustic environment. First of all, it is important to identify the source of the noise : is it an impact noise, like footsteps or a voice sound? Sounds are like water. If there is a weakness somewhere, the air or the vibration is going to sneak out.

The sound transmission class (STC) is the ability of a partition to block the passage of aerial noises. The construction code, dating back to 2005, requires an STC of 50 for the walls of a semi-detached residence, which is not always enough.

What materials allow a better soundproofing?

To adequately insulate a room or an apartment, there is a few foundamental principles to consider before starting the job. Namely, the mass, the uncoupling and the drum effect. The materials need a certain mass, because the heavier it is, the more it insulates.

Second, the uncoupling allows us to avoid rigid contacts, thus stopping the vibrations from passing from one place to another.

Finally, we have to avoid the drum effect coming from the conception of the soundproofing of the walls or the floorings.

There is a lot of ways to soundproof a room and dozens of materials exist on the market.