What is The State of the Insulation Industry?

November 20, 2015

It was different in 1955. A postage stamp costs 3 cents. The Brooklyn Dodgers win the World Series. President Eisenhower suffers a coronary thrombosis and Rosa Parks refuses to sit at the back of bus in Montgomery, Alabama, which leads to the 381-day boycott led by Martin Luther King Jr. of the city’s bus system. Albert Einstein dies.

Fast forward six decades. The population doubles and the federal debt increases from $274.4 billion to more than $18 trillion. The face of these United States has indeed changed, but what about the insulation installation industry?

While few indicators were in place to measure expansion in the industry as a whole some 60 years ago, some observers say the business of insulation installation has at least doubled, according to Insulation Outlook, the official journal of the National Insulation Association.

In fact, according to some estimates, the industry may even have tripled. We at Capitol Machine monitor news and trends in the insulation industry to better gauge our services and the needs of our clients.

Ronald L. King, the National Insulation Association’s past president and consultant, forecasts double-digit growth in the industry in the next two to three years. He said the expected growth may offset the downturn in the industry stemming from the recent recession.

King said the insulation installation mostly parallels national economic trends, which are generally positive at this time. He added that both the economy and the industry, while slowly expanding, remains on fragile ground.

What is The State of the Insulation Industry?

King said the industry has undergone major change in the last sixty years primarily in four distinct areas.

  • The first is how a insulation contractor is defined. Contractors used to work for unions and specialized in mechanical insulation. Today’s contractor is not so easily defined. Most are considered insulation installers.
  • The second group is the business owners who do most of the work themselves. These installers are more common in the maintenance part of the industry.
  • Some non-insulation installation companies do their own work, but that sometimes depends on project requirements and resources.
  • Plumbing contractors who do their own insulation work is more common in smaller markets. Their work, however, is limited to piping and duct insulation.
  • Some companies offer installation as part of a larger package of services.


King noted that the industry is undergoing a commercial transformation. While remaining mostly a diverse and fragmented industry, the business of insulation is being confronted with the market strategy of consolidation in an effort mostly by private equity firms to streamline processes and make more efficient operations. However, that commercial tide is hitting some very significant obstacles mostly due to the industry’s commercial diversity.

While the industry is in a state of flux, it is growing significantly and at this time faster than the national economy. The opportunity to grow and expand as an independent insulation installation contractor is ripe.

Did you find this information helpful? Do you have tips of your own you’d like to share? We at Capitol Machine offer a wide variety of insulation machinesinsulation blowers and insulation removal vacuumsContact us with questions or for more information. Our number is 800-421-6473.

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