Radiant Barriers

Home Inspector with Coastal Home Inspections

It has recently been brought to my attention that alot of people are not familiar with radiant barrier paints.  This is a paint that is applied on the underside of the roof decking in the attic. Radiant barriers work by reducing heat transfer by thermal radiation. These materials when applied to buildings reduce summer heat gain and winter heat loss. This similar ceramic technology was used to dissipate heat from the Space Shuttle upon atmospheric re-entry, preventing the shuttle from burning.  The thermostat can be set down 5 to 8 degrees Fahrenheit in winter and up the same amount on the air conditioner in summer and yet the comfort level of the human body can remain the same.  I have found that on average, summer electricity bills are typically lowered by 20% - 25% and in the winter, gas bills are reduced by about the same percentage.  These products will typically pay for itself in one year or less. 

Comments (2)

Bob Murphy
Keller Williams Realty Consultants - New Albany, IN

Cody.  You got me on this one.  I've never heard of Radiant Barriers.  I will ask my roofer who is going to be putting a new roof on my house soon.  Sounds like a good idea as long as the initial cost and maintenance of the Radiant Barrier makes the ROI to far out in the future.

Aug 23, 2009 04:38 AM
Cody Briggs
Coastal Home Inspections - Katy, TX

Hey Bob, if you are putting a new roof on, there are also barriers that go under the shingles that deflect the ultra violet rays.  These barriers, paint included, reduce the attic temperature significantly, as well.

Aug 23, 2009 06:14 AM