Frequently Asked Questions
Don't see your question addressed? Feel free to call us at 888.349.3645, send us a chat, or contact us electronically. Our product experts can help with quantity estimating, installation tips, and other energy-saving advice on your next project.
What is radiant barrier?
EcoFoil Radiant Barrier uses reflective material to increase the energy efficiency and comfort level of your home. Our radiant barrier is made of a thin layer of woven polyethylene, sandwiched between two layers of highly reflective metalized coating. With the polyethylene core, our product is tear resistant. EcoFoil radiant barrier blocks 96% of radiant heat transfer to help keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. It will also act as a vapor barrier when the seams are taped, keeping moisture from passing through it.
Learn more about how Radiant Barrier reflects heat.
What is reflective insulation?
Reflective insulation is a type of radiant barrier that includes polyethylene bubbles, which provides a "thermal break" on either side of the material. This helps to reduce formation of condensation and frost in cases where the temperature difference are greater on either side of the material.
Bubble Foil Reflective Insulation comes in a few varieties:
- Single Bubble Insulation for moderate climates (southern states with mild winters)
- Double Bubble Insulation for colder climates (northern states with colder winters)
- HVAC Ductwork Insulation is a popular way to wrap ducts, preventing heat gain/loss and limiting the risk of condensation which can lead to various problems.
- Under Concrete Slab Insulation prevents heat gain/loss under concrete.
How can a reflective foil radiant barrier help save energy?
A radiant barrier can effectively re-direct heat back towards its source. Therefore, in the summer, you want the heat re-directed away from your home, but in the winter, you want the heat in your home to remain there. This provides more efficient temperature control year-round.
During hot summer months, EcoFoil Radiant Barriers block 96% of the sun's radiant heat from entering your structure. Radiant heat accounts for 93% of downward heat transfer into a home.
During cold winter months, EcoFoil Radiant Barriers keep heat from escaping your building by reflecting heat back inside, which reduces dependency on your heating system to maintain optimal indoor temperatures. Radiant heat accounts for 50-75% of upward heat transfer from your home to the outdoors.
An EcoFoil Radiant Barrier will work with mass insulation, such as fiberglass and cellulose to increase your building's overall resistance to heat transfer.
What is the difference between Solid and Perforated Radiant Barrier?
Both solid radiant barrier and perforated radiant barrier are constructed the same way. They are the same thickness and both have a polyethylene core making them tear resistant. The only difference between the two is that EcoFoil Perforated Radiant Barrier has tiny pin holes punched every 1/4" throughout the roll. This is done to allow moisture, at a molecular level, to pass through it. This is the only EcoFoil product to be used in attic applications.
In a summer application or warm climate area, the best method of installation is stapling the product directly to the bottom of the rafters or trusses. In a winter application or cold climate area, the best method of installation is laying it directly on top of the attic floor. For dual climates and maximum efficiency, the best method of insulation is stapling it to the rafters and laying it on the floor. With EcoFoil Perforated Radiant Barrier, it is important to not use any tape as doing so could cause the moisture to build up instead of passing through like it is intended to.
Where is EcoFoil manufactured?
Our radiant barrier and reflective bubble insulation is manufactured by Covertech in North America and depending on its destination, is shipped from our Midwest warehouse (in Urbana, Iowa) or our East Coast warehouse (in Simpsonville, South Carolina).
Which side of the radiant barrier faces up?
There is no top, bottom, front, or back. Radiant barrier can be installed any which way and you'll get the same performance. If you chose a white/foil finish on bubble foil, you may want the white side to face you as you install it, purely for aesthetics. The material works equally well on both sides.
Does EcoFoil Radiant Barrier keep areas cool?
Yes. Radiant barriers reflect radiant heat away from roofs, attics, and walls. This keeps your indoor spaces cooler and allows your HVAC system to run more efficiently.
What material are your products made from?
The materials used on each product vary. You can find more information on materials used by viewing the "Materials" tab on a product's page.
Will EcoFoil reflective bubble insulation prevent condensation?
Yes, reflective insulation is an excellent solution to condensation problems in basements or metal buildings. The thermal break provided by the air space prevents warm, moist air inside a building from interacting with cold air on the same surface. When installed properly, with taped seams, condensation will not occur on the surface of the reflective insulation.
I already have fiberglass or blown-in insulation in my attic. Do I need EcoFoil Perforated Radiant Barrier?
Combining EcoFoil Perforated Radiant Barrier with traditional insulation is a great way to combat heat loss/gains. By combining these insulation types, you're:
- Absorbing conductive heat (traditional insulation)
- Reflecting radiant heat (radiant barrer)
Tradition insulations (fiberglass, spray foam, and cellulose) work by slowing down heat transfer from one source to another, whereas radiant barrier reflects it away.
Perforated radiant barrier can be installed on top of existing insulation in your attic to form a reflective cover, which will enhance the performance of the insulation you may already have in place.
How can using EcoFoil help improve the energy efficiency of my HVAC system?
Installing EcoFoil in your home's attic is the best way to reduce the workload of your HVAC system by nearly eliminating the radiant heat transfer in your attic space. You can also use reflective insulation to wrap duct work and reduce energy loss as heated and cooled air is moved from your HVAC unit to your home's vents. We recommend our easy to install R-8 HVAC Duct Wrap Insulation to insulate exposed HVAC duct work.
How does EcoFoil insulate well if it is so thin?
It is a common misconception that all insulation must be thick to perform well. A mass insulation will always have a higher R-Value than a thinner insulation due to density, but R-Value does not measure all types of heat transfer. Mass has little effect on radiant heat transfer, it is only efficiently blocked through reflection. For this type of heat transfer, a thinner reflective material can easily provide better thermal performance than a thicker non-reflective product with a higher R-Value. Be sure to check out our How Does A Radiant Barrier Work page for more information.
What is the benefit to adding EcoFoil reflective insulation to a metal building?
Reflective insulation provides increased comfort, energy savings, condensation control, and light reflectivity in metal buildings. In a building or warehouse that is not heated or air-conditioned, it is necessary to insulate in order to avoid heat gain in the summer as well as prevent condensation problems.
Will EcoFoil Radiant Barrier increase the amount of heat to my metal roof or shingles?
The heat energy that the metal receives comes directly from the sun. No new energy is being created. Only existing energy which has already been absorbed by the metal and is reflected back toward the source.
The same is true for under rafter applications. The radiant barrier will not make your shingles hotter nor will it damage your shingles. A study performed by RIMA shows that only nominal appreciative heat gain was measured on a rooftop over the radiant barrier.
Are EcoFoil Radiant Barriers the same as standard household aluminum foil?
Standard aluminum foil (i.e. Reynolds Wrap) is not the same as a reflective foil radiant barrier. Standard household aluminum foil is a very thin sheet of aluminum mixed with other alloys that will oxidize over time and has virtually no tear-resistance. EcoFoil radiant barrier foil has a multi-layer structure and is reinforced with a woven scrim that provides outstanding tear and tensile strength. EcoFoil radiant barrier foil also contains a much higher aluminum content for greater reflectivity and is coated for durability and corrosion resistance.
Will dust affect the performance of the EcoFoil Radiant Barrier?
Layers of dust do have an effect on the material’s ability to reflect radiant energy. Testing has determined that the actual reduction in reflectivity ranges from 7% to 18% reductions in reflectivity over 10 to 25 years. If possible, ensure your radiant barrier is free of excessive dust and debris—this will ensure optimal heat shielding properties over the long term.
Single Bubble & Double Bubble Reflective Insulation FAQ
What do the bubbles do?
The layer of bubbles provides a thermal break between hot and cold air, and helps eliminate condensation from forming in your structure.
Does White/Foil Bubble Insulation work as well as Foil/Foil?
Yes. Our White/Foil option is sometimes preferred for its clean, polished look, as it resembles unfinished drywall to the naked eye. Their reflective properties are the same.
What is Insulation tape used for?
Use Insulation Tape to seal the seams between adjoining sheets—never use tape to attach the product directly to your structure. Taping the seams creates a vapor barrier when installed properly, and helps ensure the reflective properties of the product.
Important: do not use tape to seal the seams in an attic. In general, use of tape is not recommended with perforated products, as it's important to promote air flow in order to prevent moisture forming which can lead to mold and mildew.
How much tape do I need?
As a general rule, we recommend one roll of tape for each roll of reflective insulation purchased. However, it is important to allow for tape overlap, scrap, etc.
- Foil Tape is recommended to seal the seams of foil faced insulation.
- White Poly Tape is recommended to seal the seams of white faced insulation.
- Double Sided Tape is recommended to attach the first course of insulation to the roof edge.
- Premium High Tack HVAC Tape is a reflective foil duct tape made for HVAC duct insulation.
- Conductive Aluminum SCIF Tape is designed to be used with Ultra NT Radiant Barrier for SCIFs. With this tape, it is important to tape over every seam.
Are your products easy to install?
Yes! EcoFoil products are very light and easy to work with. For most applications, the only tool requirements are a pair of scissors and a staple gun. All standard applications are easy Do-It-Yourself projects where you and one other person can complete an entire job in a short amount of time. Traditional insulation products often require the use of safety masks and gloves during installation due to the fiberglass, cellulose, or off-gassing. Reflective insulation does have a limited amount of off-gassing, but at a much lower percentage and a much safer level.
Billing & Shipping FAQ
Where does my order ship from?
EcoFoil has two warehouses: One in Urbana, Iowa and another in Simpsonville, South Carolina. Most products ship from one of these locations*. With multiple warehouses we are able to ship products across the country much faster.
When will I receive my order?
Orders placed before 4:00 PM Central Time Monday through Friday will ship out the door the same day. Most orders will arrive between 2–5 days depending on your location. After you place your order, you will receive a tracking email so you can keep an eye on your estimated delivery date.
Does EcoFoil offer free shipping?
EcoFoil offers free shipping on all products to the lower 48—or all states in the continental US. Shipping to Hawaii, Alaska, and select US territories is available for a fee. Contact our sales team for more information.
How do I become tax exempt?
Tax exempt forms can be obtained from your state's Department of Revenue office. Please upload your certificate/documentation here. Submitted tax exempt forms must be signed and dated and submitted prior to your purchase with EcoFoil. Forms will typically be validated within 24 hours from the time they were received.
Does EcoFoil ship to Alaska/Hawaii?
Yes. Call (888) 349-3645 and our service team will work with you to get the products you need, where and when you need them.
Does EcoFoil offer expedited shipping?
Yes. Expedited shipping and other special orders can be set up over the phone, over chat, or via email.
Why do I see multiple charges on my credit card?
We charge when product ships. This means if an order is split into multiple shipments, your credit card will be charged each time a shipment is sent.
Does EcoFoil offer a warranty?
Radiant Barrier, Reflective Insulation, and SCIF rolls carry a manufacturer’s 10-year limited warranty against material defects, including but not limited to de-lamination, surface imperfection, foil corrosion, and air retention. Please note:this warranty does not necessarily cover defects due to improper installation, natural disasters, normal wear and tear, or exposure to chemicals and gasses.