Signs It’s Time to Remove Your Old Insulation

Going about your average day, you may not take note of the status of your home insulation. But over time, as your insulation ages, it can deteriorate to a point of losing its effectiveness as an insulating material. So how can you know when to replace insulation in crawl spaces, basements, and attics? Do you even need to replace insulation or can you just put new insulation on top of the old? 

Insulation installation is an integral part of how Total Home Performance improves the efficiency, comfort, and health of homes on and around the Eastern Shore and in Anne Arundel County. Here are the things to look out for when trying to determine if it is time for insulation removal and replacement. 

Your Home Is Uncomfortable & Drafty

The primary role of insulation is to prevent the temperatures in your home from exiting your indoor living space through the walls and roof. Without insulation, the heat inside your home would force its way outside in the winter, and the summer heat would force its way into your home. If your insulation is not keeping your home comfortable and efficient, it’s worth removing and replacing. 

Symptoms of poor insulation include:

  • Indoor drafts

  • Rooms that are stubbornly cold, hot, or hard to condition

  • Ice dams

  • High heating and cooling bills

In addition to feeling the effects of insulation that no longer works, you can also visually identify insulation that has deteriorated. 

Your Insulation Is or Has Been Wet

Once insulation has taken on enough moisture, it no longer holds the insulation characteristics required to be effective. Wet insulation should be replaced immediately, as it can increase the risk of mold growth both in the insulation and throughout the air in your home. This can also attract pests, which brings us to the next sign you should remove your insulation. 

Pest Infestations

Many pests see insulation and think it could make a nice and cozy place to raise a family. Common pests for insulation include:

  • Mice

  • Rats

  • Cockroaches and other insects

  • Birds

  • Squirrels 

If a pest makes your insulation its home, its droppings and bacteria can pollute your air and signal to other pests that your home is a comfortable place to stay!

Your Insulation Has Been Stepped on or Compacted

The air inside common insulation types is part of what gives it a high R-value, which measures how resistant to heat transfer insulation is. Stepping on or compacting insulation deconstructs the insulating properties of insulation materials like fiberglass. If you have been storing your Christmas decoration boxes on top of the insulation in your attic, or if a large portion of your insulation has been stepped on, removing and replacing it with new insulation will offer an upgrade in your home comfort, and overall efficiency. 

Remove Old Insulation Before You Replace It!

It is not recommended to simply install more insulation over your old insulation, as the risk for mold growth and pest infestations remain, while they become harder to detect. When the insulation experts at Total Home Performance arrive to improve the indoor air quality, overall comfort, and energy efficiency of a home using the best insulation materials and installation techniques, they start from scratch. This ensures proper installation, leading to more effective insulation and a longer material lifespan. 


If you suspect your insulation could be causing your poor indoor air quality and home comfort issues, call the experts in healthy home upgrades at Total Home Performance. We can help you save up to $7,500 in Home Performance with ENERGY STAR rebates!

Removal of old insulation is essential to the installation of newer, better insulation! Call Total Home Performance at 410-822-1390 to learn how your insulation can improve the health of your home and more.

Not sure what to do about your deteriorating insulation?

We can remove it and replace it!