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8 Common Types of Roof Insulation & Their Features (Updated)
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8 Common Types of Roof Insulation & Their Features (Updated)

Posted on February 22, 2024

Estimated Reading Time : 6 Min.

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Types Of Roof Insulation

Making sure your roof is adequately insulated is essential for creating a cozy and energy-efficient home. But choosing the best insulation material can be overwhelming given the variety of options available. 

In order to make things easier, in this blog post, we will take a look at eight popular types of roof insulation. We’ll explore their qualities, benefits, and crucial elements to take into account, helping you to make an informed choice that improves your home’s efficiency and comfort.

What Are Some Different Types Of Roof Insulation? 

1. Fiberglass Batt Insulation

Fiberglass batt insulation
Fiberglass Batt Insulation

Cost: $1 to $1.50 per square foot

R-Value: R-2.9 to R-3.8 per inch

Fiberglass insulation, whether in batt or roll form, is a popular choice for insulating both the residential and commercial spaces. It is made from tightly woven glass fibers and offers effective thermal and acoustic insulation. It is ideal for framed cavities and is easy to handle and install in various areas such as in between rafters, joists, and studs. It often comes in pre-cut pieces for convenience. 

Alongside being relatively inexpensive, fiberglass insulation is fire-resistant, easily recyclable, and known for its moisture resistance, making it suitable for roofs, attics, and walls. Despite its benefits, precautions are needed during installation due to potential eye or skin irritation from released fibers. 

Nevertheless, its ability to block sound, resist fire, and adapt to different needs makes it a practical as well as a cost-effective solution for improving energy efficiency and soundproofing in buildings.

2. Polyisocyanurate (Polyiso) Insulation

Cost: $0.65 to $0.85 per square foot

R-Value: R-6.5 to R-8 per inch

Polyisocyanurate insulation boards are highly efficient thermal materials used in construction. They come in different thicknesses and are designed to eliminate thermal bridges, making them adaptable for various applications. These rigid boards, often faced with foil for enhanced performance, resist air infiltration and moisture, ensuring durability and ease of handling during installation. 

This material is commonly used in attics, roofing, and flooring due to its excellent compressive strength and resistance to rot. Available in different types tailored for specific needs, polyiso insulation is valued for its slim profile and thermal properties. 

Its high R-values and moisture resistance make it ideal for use in various roofing systems, including flat roofs, and it’s particularly useful for buildings with limited insulation space.

3. Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) Insulation

Expanded polystyrene (eps) insulation
Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) Insulation

Cost: $0.40 to $1.20 per square foot

R-Value: R-3.9 to R-4.4 per inch

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) is a lightweight, rigid foam material commonly used in construction and packaging. Made from solid polystyrene beads, it’s 98% air and recyclable. With low thermal conductivity and moisture absorption, EPS offers great insulation properties. 

It can be modified with additives like flame retardants for improved fire resistance. EPS is used in construction due to its thermal insulation, compressive strength, and long lifespan. It’s budget-friendly, easy to install, and available in various forms. Compared to other insulation, EPS has slightly lower compressive strength and is more permeable to air and moisture. 

It’s commonly used in floor, wall, and roof insulation, offering durability, corrosion-resistance, and a cost-effective solution.

4. Spray Foam Insulation

Spray foam insulation
Spray Foam Insulation

Cost: $1 to $2 per square foot

R-Value: R-3.6 to R-3.9 per inch

There are two options of spray foam insulation: closed-cell and open-cell. While closed-cell foam is denser and has higher R-values, open-cell foam is more flexible and less dense. Both varieties stick to surfaces, offering superior air sealing and guarding against water infiltration. 

Spray foam insulation is usually applied as a liquid and expands into solid foam. It can be sprayed onto any surface, making it suitable for various spaces. While open-cell foam is ideal for sound insulation, closed-cell foam is better at preventing heat transfer and water damage. 

Spray foam insulation is appropriate for both home and commercial use. It can be applied in almost any area of a building, including the attic, walls, basement, and under floors, making it an excellent choice for oddly shaped spaces or hard to reach areas.

5. Reflective Foil Insulation

Reflective foil insulation
Reflective Foil Insulation

Cost: $0.25 to $2 per square foot

R-Value: R-3 to R-17 per inch

Reflective foil insulation utilizes reflective materials to create a barrier against radiant heat. It typically comprises layers of reflective aluminum foil, thermo-foam, and polypropylene, which reflect heat and trap air to prevent heat loss. 

Lightweight, thin, and easy to install, it can be found in walls, floors, and roofs. This insulation offers high thermal performance, acting as a radiant barrier to maintain comfortable temperatures year-round. 

Available in various thicknesses and sizes, it can fit between rafters and joists or be installed continuously. Reflective foil insulation is cost-effective and sustainable, meeting building regulations and standards for performance and quality.

6. Perlite Cover Boards

Cost: $1.20 to $9.60

R-Value: R-2 to R-3 per inch

Perlite cover boards are specialized insulating materials used in roofing systems. Made from expanded perlite ore, cellulose fibers, and other materials, it is an effective type of roof insulation. These boards offer fire and moisture resistance while regulating temperature and shielding buildings from extreme thermal fluctuations. 

Lightweight, durable, and environmentally friendly, this material improves energy efficiency and is ideal for low slope or flat roof constructions. Known for their non-combustible nature and ability to withstand high temperatures, perlite cover boards boast excellent thermal insulation properties due to their porous structure. 

Additionally, they can be used as a base for various roofing membranes, offering superior strength and insulation.

7. Blown-In Insulation

Blown-in insulation
Blown-In Insulation

Cost: $0.50 to $2.50 per square foot

R-Value: R-3.2 to R-4 per inch

Blown-in insulation, or loose-fill insulation, is versatile for insulating buildings. It is applied by blowing or pouring loose material into enclosed spaces like in between framing boards or attics. It is commonly used to fill existing cavities or add insulation to hard to reach areas. It’s a practical, cost-effective solution suitable for various building types, improving thermal and acoustic performance.

Whether made from fiberglass, cellulose, or recycled materials, blown-in insulation is ideal for filling large attics or crawl spaces. Fiberglass insulation is non-flammable and is less suited to cold climates, while cellulose insulation, though flammable, is better for colder regions and is more durable than fiberglass.

It can be efficiently blown into any space using a flexible tube. With control over the total amount of insulation installed, it’s adaptable to different climates. 

8. Structural Insulated Panels

Cost: $10 to $18 per square foot

R-Value: R-5 to R-7 per inch

Structural insulated panels (SIPs) are innovative building materials used in walls, roofs, and floors. They feature a piece of foam insulation between two boards, typically oriented strand board (OSB). SIPs offer exceptional thermal performance, airtightness, and strength, contributing to an energy-efficient and durable building. 

Available in various thicknesses and customizable to fit project needs, SIPs facilitate fast installation times. It is used in residential, commercial, and industrial construction, and SIPs are recognized for their sustainability and cost-effectiveness.

The foam core, often closed-cell rigid polyurethane or expanded polystyrene, provides excellent thermal resistance and structural integrity. With dimensions of up to 4-feet in width and 24-feet in length, SIPs offer versatility in design and construction.

Why Is Roof Insulation Important?

Now that you know the different types of roof insulation, it is also essential that you understand its importance. Let’s delve in to get a better understanding: 

  • Saves Energy and Money: Keeping your roof well insulated helps you save on energy bills by trapping heat in winter and blocking out excess heat in summer.
  • Prevents Damage: Proper attic insulation stops issues like uneven snow melt, ice dams, and condensation buildup, which can harm your building over time.
  • Supports Sustainability: Insulating your roof reduces your reliance on heating and cooling systems, contributing to a healthier environment and fighting air pollution.
  • Controls Temperature: It maintains a comfortable indoor temperature year-round by minimizing the loss of air through the roof.
  • Reduces Noise: Insulation acts as a sound barrier, making your indoor space quieter by blocking outside noise.


Picking and knowing which type of roof insulation is best for your roof depends on a few things that have been mentioned above in this blog post. Now that you have an understanding of the different kinds of insulation available, you can choose the best one for your needs and budget. It’s also a good idea to talk to an expert to get advice on what’s right for your building before making a final decision. 

All Around Roofing, Siding & Gutters is here to help! If you have any questions or need help choosing insulation for your home, just get in touch with us. And if you’re looking for top-notch insulation installation services, remember All Around Roofing, Sidings & Gutters is here to serve you in the Dayton area. For the best roofing services get in touch with us at (937) 902-2839.

Types Of Roof Insulation
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