棉绝缘材料最初是在 1990 年代由德克萨斯州 Post 的 Cotton Unlimited 公司从低档原生棉中开发出来的。回收的纺织废料被发现是一种更具成本效益的生产材料，因为牛仔裤制造过程中有大量的边角料。事实证明，高回收含量和安全处理是增加消费者吸引力的品质。
Post-industrial recycled cotton textiles can be made into cotton insulation. Cotton mill waste and low-grade recycled cotton are formed into batts or packaged as loose fill. Leftover pieces of cotton clothing, including denim jeans, are shredded, treated with boric acid, and formed into batts, like traditional fiberglass batts that are common in U.S. homes. Cotton batts are bound with melted synthetic, noncellulosic polyolefin fibers that make up about 5% of the finished product (See table below). According to the EPA, VOC emissions are significantly lower in fibers made with a melt spinning process as polyolefin because the process does not use solvents.硼酸是一种低毒、可生物降解的阻燃剂和驱虫剂。它非常安全，可用于处理婴儿衣物。
图 2：棉质保温家居安装中。来自 flickr.com 
Cotton insulation uses resources that are both recyclable and renewable. Cotton that is formed into insulation is produced mainly from recycled pre-consumer clothing scraps with some agricultural cotton. The production of cotton insulation uses less energy than fiberglass insulation production. With cotton insulation there is less concern about disposal after its usefulness because it can be recycled or composted. From an economic standpoint cotton insulation costs twice as much to purchase than traditional fiber glass insulation.
Product and DIY instructions
Traditional fiberglass insulation can be dangerous to install. Exposed skin can be irritated and the fibers are hazardous to lungs. Formaldehyde is commonly found in common fiberglass insulation and can leach into the home. Cotton insulation is soft and easy to work with. Cotton is considered a safer alternative, as it releases no fibers and is treated with boric acid for fire and pest protection.
According to Bonded Logic, the manufacturers of a leading cotton insulation brand, UltraTouch, there are particular methods for installation. For ceiling applications, layering batts in alternate directions both makes the cotton fit best and achieves a higher R-value. To hold the insulation in place, batts should be secured to joists with wire or mesh until the drywall is installed. UltraTouch is "friction fit" product, meaning they are slightly oversized. Batts should be inserted and tucked between the studding in the wall cavity to ensure a tight fit. According to the manufacturer, approximately 30% of the UltraTouch batts in each bag are perforated to fit into "off-size" cavities. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, consumers should always consult the manufacturer's published instructions when installing any insulation, to ensure accordance with fire and safety regulations and any applicable building.
|Cotton insulation||Traditional insulation|
|Manufacturers||Bonded Logic, Inno-Therm, Eco-Blue||Guardian Fiberglass, Inc., Johns Mansville, CertainTeed|
|Description||Made of post-industrial recycled cotton||Made of fiberglass|
- Harley, Bruce. Insulate and Weatherize. Connecticut: The Taunton Press, 2002.
- Milton, Donald K, Walters, Michael D, Hammond, Katharine, Evans, John S. American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal. Akron: Oct 1996. Vol. 57, Iss. 10; pg. 889
- Consumer Guide and Directory of Certified Insulation Material: Sorted by type and manufacturer. State of California, Department of Consumer Affairs, Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation.
- O'Connor, Nancy. "Living Green: The Missing Manual." Sebastopol: O'Reilly Media, Inc., August 2009.