Alana Settle

Mar 30, 2017

3 min read

Why We Chose Oregon Shepherd’s Wool Insulation

We bought our wool insulation from Oregon Shepherd. This is an excerpt from their website about the advantages of wool insulation over other forms of insulation:

Why Use Wool?

There are many natural insulation products available today, so why would you choose wool, or more specifically, Oregon Shepherd’s wool insulation products.

Since 8,000 BC, sheep have been able to adapt to even the harshest of environments; their wool protects them through hot, cold, damp and dry seasons. Because of their crimped nature, when wool fiber is packed together, it forms millions of tiny air pockets which trap air, and in turn serves to keep warmth in during winter and out in the summer.

The crimp in the wool fiber forces each strand to bump up against each other, as opposed to lining up side by side or laying down flat together. This keeps the tiny air pockets intact, acting as little insulators — the key to being able to keep you both warm and cool. The unique advantage of wool as an insulator is the NATURE of the fiber.

It absorbs and desorbs moisture. It heats and cools as this process takes place. Wool therefore can abosrbe moisture in your house, preventing condensation.

It has plastic memory, not that there is any plastic in wool, but rather that technical description is used to explain the “crimp”; the ability to retain the shape it was in before it left the sheep.

The energy required to produce our insulation is less than 10% of that required to produce traditional insulation materials.

Wool can absorb and breakdown indoor air pollutants such as formaldehyde, nitrogen dioxide, and sulfur dioxide.

Wool is a sustainable and renewable resource; every year our sheep grow a new crop.

Wool is completely recyclable; at the end of its life as insulation it can be remanufacture, reused, or biodegraded.

Wool is an excellent absorption medium of sound waves; its inherent qualities provide much more acoustic insulation than traditional insulation in similar applications.

While wool is generally fire resistant, our wool is treated with a 100% natural solution of organic materials that provide unequaled fire and vermin resistance. These materials are bonded chemically to the wool fiber, not merely “glued on” as in most other insulation products.

Then, we used two layers of R-Max foam boards for the bottom portion of our wall. We did this instead of the wool because we felt the foam would be easier to work with on the lower portion of the wall where we attached 1×10 pine boards to studs we installed along the metal frame of the bus. On the upper portion of the wall, we reused the metal panels that came in the bus. When everything is done, we will paint the bottom portion of the wall white.

Thanks for reading and watching.

Originally published at thejamisons.blog on March 30, 2017.

The Jamisons are a family of four converting a Chevy Blue Bird school bus into their tiny home. Follow them on Instagram and Twitter @_thejamisons or on YouTube. Also, if you want to support this publication or their YouTube channel consider becoming a Patron.

Writer, English teacher, MFA holder

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