What Causes Cold Floors in My Home?
“How to insulate a cold floor” is a common question homeowners have in winter and early spring. There’s nothing worse than crawling off the couch or getting out of bed, planting your feet on the floor, and instantly recoiling at the sudden sting of cold. Although you can always put on slippers or shoes, you should be able to walk around comfortably in your home.
So why are your floors so cold, and what can you do about it? Proper home insulation is key, and REenergizeCO can help you optimize the spaces in your home for efficient heating.
Keep reading for more information on what might be making your floors cold and how to insulate a cold floor:
Why Is My Floor So Cold?
Cold floors are usually caused by a combination of different factors. If you have issues with cold flooring in your house, they are likely the result of the following:
As we all know from science class, warm air rises and cool air sinks to the ground. The floor is the lowest point in a room. So, the floor will remain colder while heated air moves up toward the ceiling.
Homes with multiple stories may have a significant temperature difference between floors. The floors at ground level are probably much colder than the rooms on the upper floors. The floor of the basement and crawl space, meanwhile, can become almost unbearable in the winter months.
However, any area in the house can have cold floors. This is especially true of rooms along exterior walls (where cold air is most likely to infiltrate), as well as parts of the house with (a) inadequate insulation and/or (b) flooring material that isn’t conducive to warmth.
Insulation regulates the temperature inside your home. Homes that are not well-insulated are more likely to have cold floors, uneven heating, and other issues with comfort—not to mention higher heating and cooling bills.
Unfinished basements and crawl spaces may not have been insulated at all when your home was originally constructed. Existing insulation may also become damaged or degraded, resulting in less efficiency. Both of these issues can make floors colder.
What lies below a room with cold floors is another important consideration. If a high volume of cold air is entering the house through the crawl space, the basement, poorly sealed walls, or an untreated garage, this can make the floor of the room above cold.
Choice of Flooring
The type of flooring material can also contribute to cold floors. For example, carpet acts as an excellent insulator, making the floor of a carpeted room nice and toasty. Tile, hardwood, and linoleum floors, meanwhile, will inevitably be colder. As a result, you might be perfectly comfortable walking barefoot in your bedroom or living room before running for the thick socks when you reach the kitchen or bathroom.
Installing carpet throughout the house can go a long way toward warming up your floors, but many people find this impractical, unaffordable, and potentially unsuitable for their style of home decor. Adding large area rugs can help, but you’re ultimately better off addressing the root problem: insulation that is not up to snuff.
How to Insulate a Cold Floor
Diagnosing the problem is the first step in insulating a cold floor. We recommend getting a home energy audit to assess the condition of your insulation and identify any other efficiency issues.
The next step is strategically upgrading the insulation in areas where your floors are cold. Insulation contractors may recommend improvements to the following:
- Crawl Space Insulation
- Basement Insulation
- Insulation in Exterior Walls
- Floor Joist Insulation
- Garage Insulation
What insulation you should use depends on your goals and budget, as well as where the insulation needs to be installed. Spray foam insulation is the best option for the crawl space and the basement. Maximum thermal resistance in these areas is crucial, as multiple areas of the home may be affected if the air seal is not strong enough. Furthermore, the insulation material needs to be resistant to water damage; basements and crawl spaces are often damp, and these conditions can damage most other types of insulation.
Spray foam insulation could also be an option for the garage and upgrading your walls and floors, but it may be prohibitively expensive. Instead, fiberglass insulation can be added to areas that were previously insulated (known as retrofitting) or installed where there was previously no insulation. Fiberglass batts and rolls are less expensive than spray foam while still providing an effective thermal barrier.
Say Goodbye to Cold Floors!
A comfortable home is one of the best gifts you can give yourself. That goal is achieved from the ground up. If you want to know how to insulate a cold floor, REenergizeCO can help!
Our expert energy auditors can inspect your home insulation and make recommendations for improving your energy efficiency. If you decide to go ahead with insulation upgrades, our professional crew provides the highest standard of service.
We specialize in upgrading the existing housing stock throughout the Colorado Front Range. This means we work on homes of all ages, finding creative and customized solutions for cold floors and other issues commonly faced by homeowners.
Find out what our home insulation company can do about your cold floors. Contact REenergizeCO today for service in Denver, Fort Collins, or elsewhere in the Front Range!