The Great Debate of Fiberglass or Cellulose Insulation

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by Kierra Barraza

Have you found yourself asking what the difference is between Fiberglass and Cellulose Insulation? These 2 insulation types take two routes to achieve similar goals. If you’re looking for loose fill or blown in insulation that is good for the environment and is made of recycled goods then look no further. Let’s dive into the differences between these two materials that help comfort your home and lower those energy bills. 

Fiberglass Insulation 

Fiberglass is an insulation that is made up of 40% – 60% of recycled glass. The remaining material consists of Silica Sand. Due to this insulation being made up of glass and sand, no additional chemicals are needed to treat the material. Fiberglass is naturally noncombustible thanks to the silica sand and also doesn’t hold or absorb water. Fiberglass is bought in pre-made R – Values. Since Fiberglass does not settle, it’s able to maintain it’s R- Value longer than the average insulation. In the first inch of fiberglass insulation that is laid, the acoustical value is increased by 3-4 points! This insulation is primarily for thermal and acoustical purposes. Fiberglass is offered in both batt and blankets. Since Fiberglass insulation was introduced in 1933, over 8 billion pounds of glass has been recycled.

Cellulose Insulation 

Cellulose is offered in three applications; dense packed, wet spray and loose blown. Cellulose is used to retro-fit insulation and is most commonly used in newer homes. Wet-spray cellulose has water added in during the application process and is typically used before the drywall is installed. This particular insulation is known for consisting of 75%-85% of recycled newspaper. Cellulose is treated with chemicals known to reduce pests and help aid in the insulation be a fire retardant. If the insulation absorbs water, the fire treatment is destroyed. Cellulose can also settle up to 20% after it is applied. This means you may see a rise in energy bills. 

Now that the differences between fiberglass insulation and cellulose insulation has been outlined, a decision needs to be made. Before making that decision on which insulation best suits your homes comfort, speak with an expert. If you live in the Denver metro or surrounding areas, give Ideal Home Energy a call at (303)305-3808 and/or fill out a form at and get a free estimate. Let the insulation experts help you and your home!

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