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Fiberlite Technologies, Inc.
Recycling Paper Into Cellulose Insulation
Fiberlite Technologies, Inc.
Recycling Paper Into Cellulose Insulation

Cellulose Insulation Frequently Asked Questions

What is cellulose insulation?

Fiberlite's Cellulose insulation is a high-performing loose-fill insulation made of 82% post-consumer recycled paper.

Is cellulose insulation flammable?

By law, all cellulose insulation products must be treated for flame resistance. Cellulose, in fact, will slow the spread of fire unlike fiberglass and foam which are not treated for fire resistance. Fiberlite also offers a product that meets the standard for a two hour fire rating for walls.

Does cellulose insulation settle?

When cellulose insulation is correctly blown into an attic, wall or other space to the recommended “installed thickness,” this accounts for the minor settling that occurs with the product. FTI also offers R-Plus STABILIZED, a product designed to not settle over time.

I have an existing home. Can cellulose insulation be added?

Yes, cellulose insulation is a perfect solution for upgrading energy efficiency. It may be installed directly on top of existing insulation in attics or added to walls without the need for a costly renovation of the interior wall finish. It is simply blown into the wall cavities through small holes, which are easily plugged or patched.

How is cellulose insulation different from fiberglass insulation?

Cellulose insulation forms a seamless blanket of thermal protection. Because of its loose-fill nature, it completely fills all cavities and voids, whereas fiberglass batts may not properly fit and must be compressed around plumbing and wiring, thus reducing R-Value. Furthermore, cellulose insulation is much denser than both fiberglass batts and fiberglass loose-fill insulation, resulting in a dramatic reduction in air infiltration.

How is cellulose insulation different from sprayed polyurethane foam insulation?

Foam insulation is most commonly applied in wall cavities, and is often applied at a thickness that does not completely fill the cavity. Insulation is most effective when it is in contact with all six sides of a wall cavity. Open-cell foam insulation and cellulose insulation share similar traits in their ability to reduce air infiltration. The R-Value of open-cell foam insulation is slightly lower than cellulose. While cellulose insulation is treated for flame resistance, polyurethane foam is extremely flammable.

What does R-Value mean?

R-Value is a measure of resistance to heat flow through a given thickness of material. The higher the R-Value, the greater the resistance will be. Resisting heat flow is the primary purpose of insulating, which in turn lowers energy costs. Learn more and find the recommended R-Values for your area.

What is air infiltration?

Air infiltration is the movement of air into your home through voids, seams, cracks, and other structural irregularities. R-Value does not measure the effects of air infiltration. The movement of air through insulation will greatly impact its performance. High-density cellulose insulation is extremely effective at minimizing air infiltration.

Which is the best insulation for the environment?

That's easy – cellulose.
Fiberlite's Cellulose insulation is made from 82% recycled paper, primarily newsprint, giving it the highest recycled content of any insulation product. Cellulose insulation also has the lowest embodied energy score of any major insulation. It takes less energy to produce and transport cellulose insulation, which means fewer emissions are released in manufacturing it. Fiberglass uses approximately 10 times more energy than cellulose insulation to produce and transport, while foam products, derived from petroleum, use even more. In addition, neither of these products is recyclable.3
Learn more about the environmental impact of your insulation choice.

Do I need a Vapor Barrier?

With cellulose insulation, a vapor barrier isn't recommended except in cases of high humidity areas, such as rooms with indoor pools and spas. Check the local building codes to determine any specific requirements for vapor barriers in your area.

What is the best insulation to use in a cold climate?

Studies by Oak Ridge National Laboratory show that the performance of fiberglass insulation degrades dramatically when the difference between the internal and external temperature exceeds 30 degrees, while the performance of cellulose remains stable. See the Key Performance Features Chart for more info.

How much money can I save installing more insulation?

Use the Insulation Savings Calculator for an idea on how much you could save in utility costs by increasing your insulation.

Are there tax credits or incentives available through federal, state, county, city or local utility companies?

The Department of Energy DSIRE website is a comprehensive source of information on state, local, utility and federal incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Where can I find information on other Energy Saving tips and opportunities?

There are several good websites from the federal government that offer information on saving energy: has detailed information on the Energy Star program offers wide ranging topics and advice on saving energy the DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory website has a wealth of technical information

3Life Cycle Analysis of a Residential Home in Michigan” S. Blanchard & P. Reppe (Sept. 1998); Canadian Architect Measures of Sustainability