We used several products to insulate our home, Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs), sheets of polystyrene, spray foam, granular foam beads made from recycled ICF blocks and insulated blinds.
ICFs were used to construct the main walls of the house. You can read more about ICFs by selecting Materials on the main menu and then selecting ICFs.
4 foot X 8 foot sheets of polystyrene were used below the concrete floor and on the ceiling. The sheets of styrene were laid over the entire footprint of the house prior to the concrete floor being poured into place. The Styrene sheets serve to insulate the concrete slab from the cool ground below it and prevent the cold from being transferred into the living space. The styrene also deflects the heat produced by the in-floor radiant heating system, back into the living space.
2″ Polystyrene sheets were also attached to the bottom of the steel trusses to prevent the steel from transferring cold into the living envelop. Icynene was then sprayed between the bottom cords of the trusses in the attic. Icynene requires sophisticated equipment and expertise to install, therefore it must be installed by qualified professionals. Next, two feet of recycled Styrofoam beads were place over the entire attic floor, completely covering the bottom cord of the trusses. The styrene sheets applied to the bottom of the trusses, the spray-foam and the Styrofoam beads all act to insulate the living space from the cold, but just importantly, it also insulates it from the heat produced and captured by the roof.
We used Hunter Douglas’s Duette triple honeycomb shades to insulate our windows. In addition to privacy, the shade provide an insulated barrier between the windows and the living envelop. The shades help prevent cold as well as heat from being transmitted into the home.