Home Insulation: Are There Any 'Green' Options?

If you're thinking about insulating your home, you might wonder if any 'green' options are available. When it comes to insulation, there are a few different materials that are considered to be eco-friendly. Here's what you need to know.

What Are Some 'Green' Home Insulation Options?

There are many types of 'green' insulation options, each with a different purpose.

Batt Insulation

When people picture home insulation, they most likely picture batt insulation, which are the rolls of pink or yellow fiberglass insulation you see in many homes. Unfortunately, while this type of insulation is affordable and effective, it can also be harmful to the environment. There are, however, batt insulation options that are eco-friendly, including:

  • Denim. Denim insulation is made from recycled blue jeans and other denim fabric scraps. It's a great choice for eco-conscious homeowners because it uses recycled materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill. Levi-Strauss led the way with this technology, including using denim insulation equal to 25,500 pairs of jeans for their headquarters. 
  • Mineral wool. This insulation is another great eco-friendly choice available in batts. Contrary to its name, it is not created from sheep's wool but rather from spun rock, iron, and mineral particles. Mineral wool is a natural material that is both renewable, biodegradable, non-toxic, and fire-resistant. There are two types of mineral wool: rock wool and slag wool. Rock wool is made from basalt or other volcanic materials, while slag wool is made from iron and steel manufacturing by-products.


Another popular form of insulation is loose-fill, which is the insulation that is sprayed into a home post-construction to boost R-value in a home's walls or attic space. It is, as the name implies, a loose product. Most loose-fill is cellulose, which is made from recycled newspaper and other paper products. It's non-toxic, affordable, and 'green.'


While batt and loose-fill home insulation go inside your walls, rigid insulation goes outside. Rigid insulation is typically made from polystyrene, polyurethane, or polyisocyanurate boards. There is, however, an eco-friendly option made from cork. Cork is the bark of an evergreen oak tree that is both recyclable and renewable. The Cork Institute states that "a cork tree regenerates its outer layer 12 or 13 times during its 150-year lifetime," about once every ten years. 

Many different types of eco-friendly home insulation are available on the market today, and more options are frequently added to the list. Denim, newspaper, and wool are all great choices for those who want to insulate their homes in a way that is good for the environment. Each type of insulation has its own unique benefits, so be sure to do some research to find the best option for your needs.

For more information about home insulation, contact a local company.