I quick word about attic insulation in SW Colorado

Though it didn’t really feel like it this year La Plata, Montezuma, and Archuleta counties are all in climate zones that get cold. La Plata and Montezuma are in climate zone 5 and Archuleta in Zone 6. The International Energy Conservation Code states that climate zone 5 should have an attic insulates to R-38 and zone 6 to R-49 but this is considered minimal by today’s standards. Energy Star recommendations say that any home in climate zones 5-8 should have an attic insulation with an R value of R-49 to R-60. So what exactly does that mean? It means every attic around here should have some serious insulation. What I find during home inspections is that around half of the homes I inspect do not have the thickness of insulation needed to meet these requirements. So how thick should your insulation be if you live around here? If your using loose fiberglass you should have a minimum of 20-30 inches of insulation. If using loose cellulose or fiberglass batts you need a minimum thickness of 17-20 inches. Fiberglass batts should be installed with the paper facing down in an attic. That paper is there to provide a moisture barrier and should always be facing the homes living space.