Salvador Herrera of Raleigh, N.C., was named the Best Insulation Installer in America in a contest Oct. 8 at the Johns Manville Technical Center near Denver, Colo. Five finalists competed in the fifth annual event, which had a grand prize of $10,000. Herrera is employed by Raleigh-based Insulating Inc., which has produced the last three winners of the five-year-old contest. At this year’s finals, each of the five competitors took a turn installing various insulation products in a wooden mock home, complete with common construction obstacles and a vaulted ceiling. They were judged using several criteria, including quality of workmanship and installation, adherence to safety rules and speed/productivity. Because insulation is only as good as its installation, contestants were critiqued on their ability to completely fill the wall cavity with insulation, without leaving gaps and voids where energy can escape. A quality insulation installation helps ensure a home is thermally efficient and helps reduce the homeowner’s heating and cooling costs. The competition was created in 2003 to highlight the importance of a quality insulation installation.