Physics Van 3-site Navigational Menu

Physics Van Navigational Menu

Q & A: Does the color of insulation matter?

Learn more physics!

Most recent answer: 11/17/2011
Does the color of insulation for a home mean anything they are putting a dark gray looking color in and I always seen a pinkish color thank you
- James (age 64)
Fort Wayne in USA
Not much if at all.   The color of an object does affect the absorption and reflection of incident light but insulation does not involve reflected light but is more relevant to thermal heat conduction. The important properties here are the thickness of the insulation and the thermal conductivity of the material.  These properties are usually combined in what is called the R rating.  The higher the R, the better the insulation.
Color is important in some cases: the roof tops of houses in very sunny and hot climates are often painted white.  In this case the effect of reflection of direct sunlight is more important.


(published on 11/17/2011)

Follow-up on this answer.