Mar 03, 2018

Spotting Winter Home Insulation Problems With Performance Testing

Can a home performance test really help you spot problems with your home’s insulation? Here’s must-know information from Barry Stranz (professional & educator) who has 30+ years in the home improvement industry.

Listen To The Entire Home Improvement Show Here:

Minnesota Home with Ice Dams Forming


Where Ice Dams Form

One of the biggest frustrations of homeowners in the Twin Cities this winter has been the extreme temperature changes.  One of the most problematic home issues that arises are ice dams.

It’s important for homeowners to understand the architecture of historic homes to understand that their architecture dictates what’s possible in terms of insulation and ventilation, making it imperative that a knowledgeable contractor addresses the issue.

 Regardless of the age of a home, the key to ice dam prevention is to keep the surface temperature of a roof at the same temperature as the outside air.  However, once sunlight hits the roof, the temperature on the surface begins to rise and snow on the roof will begin to melt, which can create icicles.  This phenomenon can occur even within properly insulated and ventilated homes.

Valleys are a spot on a roof where two plains intersect, doubling the amount of water they come in contact with as snow on a roof begins to thaw and subsequently refreezes, creating alarming ice dams.  Roof raking can provide temporary relief.  However, when ice dams are occurring because of heat loss from a home, you should schedule an estimate with a reputable contractor that can conduct a home performance test to see what can be done.

See How a Home Performance Test is Conducted Here:

 Common Problems with Energy-Efficient Homes

The science of a building plays a significant role in the energy efficiency of a home.  In the attic, the goal is to get air to blow across the top of the insulation without displacing it.

Blown-in fiberglass or cellulose are exposed to air coming in through soffit vents and if they aren’t protected properly, they can begin to blow out of the space, creating insulation loss.  This, in turn, creates a high heat transmission location which is evident by spots of snow melting on the outside wall line of the building.

This issue is problematic in many 1950’s era homes.  Oftentimes, within 24 hours of a snowfall, there will be a melt pattern that runs parallel to the eave, about 2 feet up the roof edge, identifying a heat loss location right up the exterior wall.

This is indicative of a lack of insulation.  In addition, ice melting around skylights or bath fans highlight the fact that there may not be enough insulation around them.

A home performance test can help identify these areas where insulation or other updates are needed.

Contact us today to schedule your home performance test with Lindus Construction.

Our team answers homeowner questions every weekend on WCCO 830 AM from 9:00 am-10:00 am.  Have your most pressing home improvement questions answered by calling or texting 651.461.9226.

Our Recent Insulation Projects:

Our Recent Insulation Projects:

"Lindus Construction did a great job of removing old insulation in our attic and then sprayed foam insulation to seal the air leaks in both our attic and basement. They then installed new insulation to meet current building codes and corrected venting issues. Randall kept me updated me updated at each step of project which I appreciated. The Lindus team was very courteous and did great job of keeping our house clean during this time."

Ken M.
Cottage Grove, MN
November 22, 2023

"Randall Bowman and an attic insulation crew attended to my Somerset, WI condo in Oct. 2023.  They were ahead of schedule, very conscientious about not causing any damage or mess in the house. Very conscientious about not blocking traffic for my condo development neighbors. And, they were very efficient-- finishing earlier than they estimated. I would highly recommend Lindus Construction and the two insulation company they contract with."

Deb M.
Somerset, WI
October 12, 2023

"Jake was very helpful and responsive in getting through this catastrophic event when a huge chunk of ice crashed through our family room ceiling. He was helpful in discussions with insurance company, especially as when they sent out an evaluator he spent less then 20 minutes on the job, then disappeared."

Gary I.
Stillwater, MN
September 10, 2023

"I thought it went very well!  No issues."

Brian B.
Ramsey, MN
August 24, 2023

"Fourth project with Lindus. Brandon Larson analyzed issues that occurred last winter.  He came up with a plan to prevent them from happening again."

Jane S.
Solon Springs, WI
August 7, 2023

"Great job! Kept us informed! Also, was very considerate. Made sure everything was cleaned up at the end of the day and took care to always wear masks around us, since my wife is immune compromised."

Dave G.
Maplewood, MN
June 26, 2023
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