heating and AC, plumbing & electric


Is your air conditioner struggling to cool your home? According to Energy Star – a U.S Environmental Protection Agency voluntary program, most modern HVAC systems or air conditioners are built to last an average of 15 years, completely dependent on make & model, as well as your climate, how often you run the system, and how often your air conditioner is maintained.

Your air conditioner is something most of us take for granted, and never really give any consideration to until it breaks down & leaves us vulnerable to the elements. When this happens, you’ll rush to find an HVAC company to come to your home, and hope they provide a quick & easy fix. However, sometimes these “quick & easy fixes” can’t actually be completed easily, quickly, or even cheaply.

When this happens, you have a pretty big decision to make: repair or replace your existing air conditioner system? How can you know what the best decision is for you, your home, & your wallet?


heating and AC, plumbing & electric 479.900.0784
March 26, 2013

Top Insulation Choices: Cellulose And Fiberglass

03.26.13Superior attic insulation literally takes top billing for providing an energy-efficient, comfortable and healthy home. Loose-fill cellulose and fiberglass are top insulation choices in our region, so it’s important to understand the benefits and deficiencies of each, as pertaining to your situation and home.

Cellulose loose-fill insulation

Cellulose insulation is manufactured from pulverized newsprint. Cellulose insulation is commonly installed in attics and wall cavities of homes using a pneumatic blowing machine.

  • Benefits: Cellulose insulation has good heat-resistance and sound-absorption properties. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency labels it as being effective against termites, cockroaches and earwigs. It does not contain harmful compounds, such as ammonium sulfate, asbestos, fiberglass and formaldehyde, found in other types of insulation.
  • Deficiencies:  Cellulose insulation is flammable, so it’s treated with fire-retardant borates. The borates tend to corrode wiring and pipes. They may also contribute to respiratory issues for infants, elderly and allergy sufferers. Cellulose insulation installed higher than R-30 may cause sagging in drywall ceilings. Recommended R-value in northwest Arkansas is R-30 to R-60, making cellulose insulation an unattractive choice for new installs.

Fiberglass loose-fill insulation

Like cellulose insulation, fiberglass loose-fill insulation is blown in using a blowing machine, and easily conforms to different shapes and sizes of home structures.

  • Benefits: Fiberglass loose-fill insulation does not settle over time, which means it retains its full R-value for the life of the home. It is lighter than cellulose insulation, and may be installed to the recommended R-60 value (for new construction) without damaging drywall ceilings. Fiberglass loose fill is fire-resistant.
  • Deficiencies: Airborne fiberglass “dust” easily enters the respiratory system, causes itchy eyes and irritates exposed skin. A respirator, goggles, gloves, long pants and a long-sleeve shirt should be worn during installation, or anytime household occupants venture into the attic.

Superior installation by your HVAC professional will achieve the best results for your insulation installation project. Proper distance from light fixtures and the flue or chimney is required to prevent fires, and soffit vents shouldn’t be obscured.

For more information about insulation choices for your home-efficiency upgrade or new construction, please contact us at Paschal Heat, Air & Geothermal in northwest Arkansas.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Northwest Arkansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about insulation and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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