Radiant barriers are used in the reduction of heat gains in attics during the summer. The sun’s energy reaches the shingles through radiation. The shingles heat up and in turn, heats up the attics. The heat is then transferred to the interior attic space via the roofing materials through conduction. When the temperature of the attic space increases, the heat is transferred to the rest of the home below. This significantly reduces summer cooling costs and energy consumption. A radiant barrier can lower heat transfer and keep the attic space cooler in the summer. Then can reduce cooling costs up to 17% in warm climates.
Radiant Barrier Myths Homeowners Should Know AboutThere are myths surrounding radiant barriers in homes. Some of these myths include:
- Radiant barriers were invented by NASA. This is far from the truth. They were invented by some less exciting German businessmen, Schmidt and Dyckerhoff, in 1925. NASA has only employed this invention since the Apollo program for astronaut suits and spacecraft for protection and insulation against thermal radiation and in fluctuating space temperatures.
- Color and reflectance of a substance adds to its efficiency as a radiant barrier. This also is not true. Reflectance of a substance and color DO NOT add to a radiant barrier’s efficiency.
- Radiant barriers are the all-time solution to home energy efficiency. Actually, they are simply part of a cohesive building envelope. They are not the ultimate remedy for energy efficiency.
7 Benefits of Installing Radiant Barriers in Your HomeThese are just seven of many awesome, money-saving benefits of installing radiant barriers to keep your home energy costs down:
- Work best when it is very hot. The hotter the sun, the higher their efficiency.
- Can reflect up to 97% of solar radiation. That translates to about 30oF heat reduction.
- Reduce A/C requirements up to about ½ ton in warm climates.
- During summer when it is hot, radiant barriers brings about a cooling effect and at the same time reduce energy costs.
- During the winter when it is cold, the barrier’s roof sheath prevents heat transfer from the warm interior.
- The radiant barriers prolong the life of your heating and cooling systems. The reduced attic temperature simply increases the attic ductwork efficiency. This implies that there are fewer cycle times hence prolonging the life of your systems.
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