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History of Insulation

The history of insulation goes back almost as far as recorded events do. Humans have dealt with differing seasons as long as they’ve been around. With these changing seasons and the changing temperatures that come with them, humans have felt the need to control the temperatures in their living spaces. Hence, insulation came along.

Ancient Greeks and Romans used cavity walls for insulation using air. Two walls were built with a space between them. The air in those spaces served as an insulator, regulating the temperature within the buildings. Interestingly, in the history of insulation, this type of building is being used again in both home and commercial buildings.

Egyptians used asbestos for insulating their houses and may have been the first to do so. But it was the ancient Greeks who named asbestos. Greeks used it not only as insulation, but also as clothing for slaves, wicks for eternal temple flames, napkins, and to dress kings for their funerals. They gave asbestos a more common name, also. Crysotile, meaning ‘gold cloth’. Likewise, the Greeks first saw the ‘lung sickness’ this cloth could give the slaves who wore it. Thus, they were the first to discover the danger of using asbestos we know about so well today.

Romans used cork for insulation in their homes. Early Hawaiian natives used mineral fiber from volcanic deposits to insulate their homes.

Coming back to the United States, the history of insulation saw residents of the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression using strips of cloth coated in a paste made from flour. They would use these strips over the cracks around windows and doors to keep out the dust. Those in the city used newspapers in much the same way to keep out drafts.

The history of insulation shows the development of many better forms of insulation for homes and other uses since the Dust Bowl days. Some of the “green” techniques used today, such as fabrics, were used in ancient times. Others, like asbestos, have been scrapped because of danger to health.

One newer insulation type, spray foam, has been found to be an excellent way to insulate just about any structure. This chemical compound forms foam when its components mix together. The foam spreads and fills all of the area sprayed, hardening into a dense and durable insulating seal for homes and businesses.

To assure you gain the most from the benefits of spray foam insulation, contact a professional applicator to apply it. Weathertight Spray Foam in Gilford, NH, is one of the best in the area. Contact them at 603-343-3266 to schedule an appointment to discuss their services.