Radiant Barrier Failing?

I inspected a home yesterday that I am actually considering purchasing for myself. In the attic, I can see a silver radiant barrier on an exterior wall, that is clearing failing. See the pictures, but it almost looks as if it has bubbled or melted. This exterior wall is stucco, and it appears the radiant barrier was installed first during original construction as it is on the outside of the framing. I haven’t seen a radiant barrier visible in any attic around this area before. House in Northern California. Outdoor air temps can get up to 100 in the summer. The roof has some leaks which has caused mold in one of the bedrooms, but no smell of such in the attic.

Any guesses as to why this is failing? Could this indicate water intrusion through the stucco?

Would you think that the radiant barrier is used throughout the home, or would it have only been used within the attic areas? Is this something that needs to be corrected, or just live with it?

Due to a lot of blown in insulation above the framing, I elected not to try and navigate my way to the wall, but may need to.

Any guesses or suggestions will be helpful!


One of the benefits of hiring a professional inspector is that you can get a professional opinion from someone who has observed the anomaly first hand and can investigate what was observed and correlate it with other observations in order to give you that opinion, rather than looking at pictures of the far end of the attic and guessing.

You would be wise to hire the professional inspector of your choice to perform a professional inspection on your major purchase while you still have time.