R-Value Recommendations For Homes

The US Department of Energy (DOE) recently released their new R-value recommendations for new and existing homes. The insulation recommendations for attics, cathedral ceilings, walls and floors have been increased overall and generally exceed those required by most building codes.  The Department of Energy’s new range of recommendations is based on comparing future energy savings to the current cost of installing insulation.  According to the DOE, providing a range of recommendations is shown for these reasons:

  • Energy costs vary greatly over each zone
  • Installed insulation costs vary greatly over each
  • Heating and cooling equipment efficiency varies from house to house
  • The DOEs best estimate of future energy costs may not be exactly correct


This map and the table below show the DOEs R-value recommendations for existing homes.

 Add Insulation to Attic Chart

The recommendations show ranges of cost effective R-value choices. Savings vary, find out why in the seller's fact sheet on R-values. Higher R-values mean greater insulating power.

Not sure what R-value of insulation you have in your attic?