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Is Your Overhang Insulated?

by Harry Martin

If your home has a cantilevered overhang, this is an area you should focus on specifically when evaluating your insulation and energy efficiency. Insulation should be included in the floor of the overhang, but if the builders did a speedy or shoddy job, this step may have been skipped. This guide will explain how to evaluate whether or not your overhang is properly insulated and offer some tips for insulating it post-build if you find that it is not insulated.

Signs that Your Overhang is Not Well Insulated

Wait until a day that is particularly cold or hot to do this evaluation. Take the temperature in a main room of your home, and then take the temperature in your cantilevered overhang. If the temperature is more than a degree or two different, this is a sign that your overhang is either not insulated well, or not insulated at all. If the temperature is about the same, you can rest assured that your cantilevered overhang is well-insulated and is not letting in drafty air.

Your next step, if the temperature is different, should be to feel the floor over the overhang. Is it cold (on winter days) or overly hot (on summer days)? Do you feel a draft when your stand in the overhang area? These are all signs of poor or inadequate insulation.

How to Insulate an Existing Overhang

Insulating an already-built overhang is a challenge. If you want to install fiberglass or cotton insulation, this will require tearing up the floor boards. If you're remodeling anyways, perhaps this is not such a terrible endeavor. However, if you don't want to rip up the floor, there is another option: spray foam insulation.

You'll need to have spray foam insulation installed by a qualified applicator, since it requires special equipment and precise chemical mixtures. Spray foam starts as a liquid and then expands to fill the space it is sprayed into. With any luck, your applicator can insert it through small holes in the floor. These holes can then be plugged, or the floor can simply be carpeted, and you can enjoy your better insulated home.

When your cantilevered overhang is fully insulated, your home will feel less drafty. Your energy bills will likely go down, too. If you are worried about energy efficiency and you have an overhang, it's worth your while to evaluate whether or not it is properly insulated. Even if you cannot afford to have it insulated right now, knowing that this is a task to complete in the future will give you some direction when it comes to improving your home's energy efficiency. For more information, contact a company like Durham Insulation.