Hot Summer Days are Here..Think: American Dream Attic Guard!

This innovative product will block radiant heat from entering or exiting a home making it cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Feeling more comfortable while saving energy and money is our goal for your family. Combine American Dream Attic Guard and insulation and save up to 30% on energy bills!Radiant barriers are installed in homes—usually in attics—primarily to reduce summer heat gain, which helps lower cooling costs.

The barriers consist of a highly reflective material that reflects (or more specifically, re-emits) radiant heat rather than absorbing it. They don’t, however, reduce heat conduction like thermal insulation materials.

It is a Double-Sided, Tear-Resistant, Class A/Class 1 Fire-Rated, Clean and Non-Toxic Foil Radiant Barrier.  American Dream Attic Guard™ is made only from top-of-the-line materials, and with a reflectivity of 97%, American Dream Attic Guard™ reflects virtually all of the radiant heat from the sun away from your residential home or commercial building, saving you money on your utility bills.

American Dream Attic Guard™ is starting to become common place in building construction.  Whether you are building a new home or live in an older home, it is never too late to add this energy efficient heat reflecting foil.  The attic is generally the easiest and most common place to install radiant barrier.  In this location, our highly reflective foils are very effective at reducing both the heat gained in the summer and lost in the winter to make your home more comfortable and save money on utility bills.

How They Work

Heat travels from a warm area to a cool area by a combination of conduction, convection, and radiation. Heat flows by conduction from a hotter location within a material or assembly to a colder location. Heat transfer by convection occurs when a liquid or gas is heated by a surface, becomes less dense, and rises (natural convection), or when a moving stream of air absorbs heat from a warmer surface (forced convection). Radiant heat travels in a straight line away from any surface and heats anything solid that absorbs the incident energy. Radiant heat transfer occurs because warmer surfaces emit more radiation than cooler surfaces.

When the sun heats a roof, it’s primarily the sun’s radiant energy that makes the roof hot. A large portion of this heat travels by conduction through the roofing materials to the attic side of the roof. The hot roof material then radiates its gained heat energy onto the cooler attic surfaces, including the air ducts and the attic floor. A radiant barrier reduces the radiant heat transfer from the underside of the roof to the other surfaces in the attic.

A radiant barrier’s performance is determined by three factors:

  • Emissivity (or emittance) – the ratio of the radiant energy (heat) leaving (being emitted by) a surface to that of a black body at the same temperature and with the same area. It’s expressed as a number a between 0 and 1. The higher the number, the greater the emitted radiation.
  • Reflectivity (or reflectance) – a measure of how much radiant heat is reflected by a material. It’s also expressed as a number between 0 and 1 (sometimes, it is given as a percentage between 0 and 100%). The higher the number, the greater the reflectivity.
  • The angle the incident radiation strikes the surface—a right angle (perpendicular) usually works best.

Radiant barriers are more effective in hot climates than in cool climates, especially when cooling air ducts are located in the attic. Some studies show that radiant barriers can lower cooling costs between 5%–10% when used in a warm, sunny climate. The reduced heat gain may even allow for a smaller air conditioning system. But in cool climates, it’s usually more cost effective to install more than the minimum recommended level of insulation rather than a radiant barrier.

Installation

A radiant barrier’s effectiveness depends on proper installation. Therefore, it is wise to have a certified installer do it. BUT, this task is certainly not out of your reach!

If you want to install a radiant barrier yourself, obtain instructions and safety precautions first. Carefully study and follow these directions. You should also check your local building and fire codes.

Radiant barriers can be installed between the roof sheathing and attic floor insulation, in cavity walls, and around door openings, water heaters, and pipes. It’s easier to incorporate radiant barriers into a new home, but you can install them in an existing home too.

An installer typically drapes a rolled-foil radiant barrier foil-face down between the roof rafters to minimize dust accumulation on the reflective faces (double-faced radiant barriers are available). This is generally done just before the roof sheathing goes on if it’s not too windy, but it can also be done afterwards from inside the attic by stapling it to the bottom of the rafters.

When installing a foil-type barrier, it’s important to allow the material to “droop” between the attachment points to make at least a 1.0 inch (2.5 cm) air space between it and the bottom of the roof. This air space has mainly two functions: it creates an air channel for the soffit and ridge ventilation system to work more effectively, and it acts as a second reflector since there are two shiny sides (one facing up/ one facing down.)

Some builders also try to attach the radiant barrier directly onto the roof sheathing prior to their installation on the roof rafters. However, a more effective method is to simply buy foil-faced plywood or oriented strand board sheathing instead. There are also metal roof shingles that have a reflective underside. If you need roof shingles, these are a practical option, but the cost of this type of radiant barrier is considerably higher than other types.

A radiant barrier installed on top of attic floor insulation is more susceptible to dust accumulation. This undesirable installation method may also trap moisture in fiber insulation during cold weather. A radiant barrier installed on the cold side of the insulation acts as a vapor barrier in the wrong location. When warm moisture carrying house air leaks into the attic in the winter, it may condense on the underside of the barrier. Even a perforated radiant barrier can trap moisture in cold climates since the water can freeze in the small holes and seal them. Because of these hazards, it’s strongly recommended that you NOT apply radiant barriers directly on top of the attic floor insulation. Of course, installing them at all in a cold climate is not generally cost effective anyway

American Dream Attic Guard™ can help cut air conditioning costs by as much as 20%!!

Click here to find out more about American Dream Attic Guard


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