All homes need some sort of insulation, especially during the most extreme seasons of the year. During the winter, you want to keep the cold air outside and retain the warm air while your heating system keeps your family comfortable. Then, in the summer, you want to keep out the hot, humid air while cooling your home with your air conditioning system. Overall, there are five different types of insulation you might want to install in your home.

Saving energy is, essentially, the key to keeping your home feeling as comfortable as possible no matter what the season. In general, there are various ways you can do that. One of the most basic is to ensure that your insulation is strategically placed, such as in areas where there are cracks and crevices that might allow outside air in while the air inside your home can also seep out. If you have any air leaks around doors or windows or in the attic, basement or crawlspace, these are the areas that require attention. On average, when you tackle the problem of air leaks, you can save around 15 percent of the total costs of energy, which amounts to around $200 per year. Of course, this also means you have to choose the right type of insulation.

Blanket Batts and Rolls

If you’re interested in a DIY insulation project, you will want to use blanket batts and rolls. These are usually made from fiberglass but may also include cotton, mineral wool and plastic fibers. It’s easy to use these for insulating your walls, the rafters in your attic and more. Another benefit of this insulation is that it’s inexpensive. However, it’s important to use protective gear while — a mask and gloves — installing it as fiberglass is an irritant to the lungs and skin.

Spray Foam

One of the most popular types of residential insulation is spray foam. If you have any air leaks in your walls or windows, this is the best option. It is installed first by spraying liquid polyurethane into the area. Then, it ends up expanding and hardening into solid foam form. It’s important to know that when you choose spray foam to insulate your home, you should rely on a professional’s expertise for the job.

Blown-in Insulation

Because of the way it is installed, blown-in insulation is another type that should be installed only by a professional. It is applied while using a machine that blows material into the spaces that require insulation. Often, this type of home insulation is made of fiberglass, rock wool or reclaimed cellulose material. Blown-in is aptly named as it can be blown into any area that requires insulation, even those trickier crevices and corners that obstruct access. In some cases, if you have a simple job, you might be able to DIY if you can rent an insulation blower.

Foam Board or Rigid Foam Panels

If you are looking to add insulation to a floor or area without a vent that needs insulation on the roof, such as your crawlspace, you might want to consider using foam board or rigid foam panels. Usually, these are made of polyurethane, polystyrene or polyisocyanurate.

Reflective or Radiant Barrier

Another type of insulation for the home are reflective or radiant barriers. Reflective is exactly that as it reflects heat away from the home while radiant transfers heat away so cooler air can stay inside. It’s relatively easy to use this type of insulation as a DIY project. This reflective insulation is usually used in warmer areas and installed in the attic.

If you are environmentally-conscious, you will want to use green building materials for your insulation project. Talk with your contractor to learn about these and other materials that might be right for insulating your home.