Jan 26, 2023

Can Attic Insulation Make You Sick?

It’s not uncommon for homeowners to have never visited their unfinished attic.  This is unfortunate since home insulation can have a major impact on health.  Improving a home’s indoor air quality often starts with attic insulation.  Here are three scenarios where you can get sick from old insulation.

1. Potential Mold On Insulation In The Attic

Attic insulation mold can happen for a variety of reasons.  They can include:

  • Roof leaks
  • The wrong combination of insulation types
  • Home insulation that was installed wrong
  • Insulation that was installed over the soffit vent

Once it is evident you have mold on your insulation, it is important to remove it from your home.  An insulation contractor should assist with this process and help identify the origin of the mold.  After that, all new insulation should be installed.

attic mold

How Attic Mold Can Make You Sick At Home

In minor cases, symptoms from mold sickness only heighten allergy ailments.  If attic mold is at a dangerous level, toxic chemicals will become present in your home.  Mold sickness symptoms can include:

  • Coughing
  • Itchy skin
  • Labored breathing
  • Watery eyes
  • Irritation of internal organs

2. Animals In Your Attic Making You Sick

Squirrels, rodents, bats, and bugs in the attic can produce an array of toxins.  Bat and rodent fecal matter can spread toxic viruses to humans.  Humans can get ill from the inhalation of the spores in bat guano and develop histoplasmosis.

bat droppings in attic
This attic inspection turned up a sizable amount of bat droppings.

What Are The Symptoms Of Histoplasmosis?

Histoplasmosis first attacks a human’s lungs.  During the first few days, only minor symptoms are present.  Approximately 10 days after exposure, an array of symptoms can take place including:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing
  • Joint, chest, & muscle pains
  • Impaired vision
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite

Histoplasmosis can run its course a person can recover without medical help.  Immunocompromised populations and children can experience long-term illness or death without proper diagnosis.

Should I Remove Droppings In Attic Insulation?

Only reputable professionals should remove toxic pest waste from an attic.  They understand the decontamination and deodorization process. Next, an insulation contractor can restore your attic to the correct R-value level.

fiberglass insulation removal

3. Asbestos In Vermiculite Insulation

Many homes built before 1980 have expanded vermiculite insulation in their attic.  There are many advantages to vermiculite insulation including:

  • Easy installation
  • Significant thermal performance
  • Effective sound barrier

The primary mine where vermiculite insulation came from also contained asbestos deposits.  This means that some insulation contains asbestos, and some does not.  Professional testing can verify the presence of asbestos in the insulation.  If the vermiculite tests positive for asbestos, removal of the old insulation should be performed by an expert.  Asbestos fibers that are disturbed can become airborne.  This can lead to the risk of lung cancer and mesothelioma.

Replace Your Old  Home Insulation In The Twin Cities Or Western Wisconsin

Since 1979, we’ve helped homeowners troubleshoot their problems by evaluating preexisting old insulation.  We take an individualized approach and treat offer custom long-term insulation solutions.  Our home insulation projects come with a lifetime workmanship guarantee.

If you’re looking to enhance or replace old insulation and have questions, contact us today otherwise get an estimate to start your complimentary consultation.

Watch Our Insulation Contractors Complete A Project:

View Our Attic Insulation Installation Projects:

Reviews Of Our Home Insulation Services:

"My experience was wonderful.  The guys did a walk through before starting and helped remove stubborn ceiling tiles. They shoveled my sidewalk between the hose and garage to minimize tracking any snow in.  Very personable and dealt with some difficult access to several sill areas. I always inform my friends of my projects with Lindus and the quality of the work and the crews."

Michaeleen K.
Minneapolis, MN
March 9, 2023

“When we heard about a free heat map analysis, we decided to have one done on our attic.  Brandon came out and suggested we could improve our home’s energy efficiency by installing Thermax boxes sealed to our drywall, along with more insulation.  Randall contacted us to complete our project and it was done in a timely manner.  They did a nice job and exhibited expert workmanship.  The team was polite, and we are very pleased with the result.  In the past, Lindus has also completed a kitchen renovation and the installation of a new deck.  They are top-notch and hire qualified people.”

Tom I.
Somerset, WI
March 1, 2023

"Thanks again for the great job on the spray foam."

Todd B.
Plymouth, MN
August 26, 2022

"Thank you for going above and beyond the call of duty to help me out.  Your expertise made all the difference in helping me resolve my house projects!"

Patricia M.
Bloomington, MN
August 19, 2022

“Thank you to the entire team for the outstanding job on the insulation job of my 100-year-old home!  Eric took the time to walk me through the entire process and even came back a second time to sort out venting questions.  Project manager, Randall, made sure the insulation installed met your quality standards.  Every member of your team worked very hard and didn’t end their day until the job was done right.  I look forward to energy savings and no critters in my attic!”

Pat M.
Bloomington, MN
July 26, 2022

"Jason and the insulating crew did a great job. I told Jason it looked like nothing was done when he finished cleaning, which is a very good thing.  The insulating crew did have a difficult time working under the bay window. They usually hold their spray gun about 2 ft. away from the surface. In our location, they only had a foot at the most. So, there was a lot of blowback, clean-up, and additional layers to get the final result."

Jerry P.
Eden Prairie, MN
June 16, 2022
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