Insulation is one of the most important elements of an energy-efficient home, if not the most important. Keeping warm air in and cold air out during the winter months means your heating system doesn’t have to work as hard to keep your home nice and toasty, saving valuable fuel resources and lowering your energy bills at the same time.
It used to be that traditional fiberglass insulation was the only game in town, but now there are several green insulation alternatives that are better both for you and the environment. Fiberglass insulation contains particles of actual glass that are tiny enough to be inhaled (and embed themselves in your skin, making you itch), so you can imagine the damage it can do to your lungs if it’s not handled properly. But the bigger issue is the binders hold the fiberglass particles together: The resins typically contain formaldehyde that off-gasses freely, and the dyes usually give off fumes too.
If your project requires fiberglass, a greener choice is EcoBatt Glasswool. EcoBatt boasts not only fiberglass made from recycled bottles and sand (instead of new glass), but its binders contain no formaldehyde, phenol, acrylics or artificial colors.
Then there’s the greenest option of all (and the coolest): insulation made of recycled jeans! Remember those Levi’s you wore almost every day in high school? They might be inside the walls of somebody’s house now. Bonded Logic UltraTouch Recycled Cotton Insulation is made from nothing but shredded denim treated with an EPA-registered, non-off-gassing fungus inhibitor--so it’s non-toxic, recycled, and it works like a charm.
Cellulose is another green insulation choice, and National Fiber’s Cel-Pak is proven to beat fiberglass, foam and rockwool when it comes to performance. Even better, it’s made of 100% recycled paper (so that’s where all your office memos ended up!), and requires very little energy to manufacture.
Green Depot carries a range of the best green insulation options available today. Have a look through our selection to find some that’s right for your project, or even just to learn about how your insulation choice can impact the environment.