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radiant barrier or no radiant barrier?

I live in the Bay area in California where in the winter my house is 50 deg F with no heat. I can't remember what it is in the summer inside the house but definitely in the 90s if not more. Outside, the highest is about 110 F on very rare days.I just found out that I barely have any insulation after I made an appointment with Eagle Shield. They can do R-19 blown in insulation and put in a foil-like radiant barrier over that. Home Depot can do the same but they attach their radiant barrier to the roof in the attic. I am not sure what to do. Should I just do the R-19 insulation which would be about $1700 or add the radiant barrier which would be another $3000??? If I do the radiant barrier, which should I do--over the insulation (mold worries?) or to the roof (would the roof get too hot)? THANKS in advance for any help on this!!!!

Re: radiant barrier or no radiant barrier?

Not sure if my experience will help you, but being in a hot and humid climate (New Orleans) might compare favorably with your questions. Last year we put radiant barrier against the roof joists, leaving a gap to trap air in the spaces between the joists and against the roof. Within 2 days of the install, we noticed a significant difference in the amount of air conditioning needed. We've also installed a solar-powered attic fan, which has further improved the attic temp. I would certainly recommend this to anyone wanting to keep the attic cool. This is the only insulation we have in out attic and it has made a huge difference.

Re: radiant barrier or no radiant barrier?

In Cali. i don't think you would ever recoup the extra $3000 so i would just do the insulation.

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