Radiant barrier with R38 attic insulation?? Worth it?

cgpspNovember 18, 2010

Hi All,

I'm building a home in the central California valley, where temperatures get as high as 105 in a summer day, and as low as 55 on a winter day. The house is going to have R38 insulation in the attic, but I keep going back to wondering if I should do radiant barrier in addition? The quotes I'm getting right now are about $2500, which is about $1/sq foot of attic space.

My question is... is it worth it to do radiant barrier? Our electricity is relatively cheap, about 11c / kWh. IF, and it's hard to know at all since I don't live there yet, it saves me $50 / month average during 6 summer months, that will only return $300/year, making my break even point about 8 years. I do plan to stay in the house for as much as 20. But, the $50 / month is just a wild guess.

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I can't speak to the efficacy of the barrier itself - Solargary may know more about that. But I'd point out that electricity is almost certain to increase in cost as other fuels also increase. Your payback rate is likely to accelerate in the coming years. And if you have any "green" inclinations at all, for you it may just be the "right thing to do."

Hope this helps!

    Bookmark   November 28, 2010 at 7:13PM
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