Where can it be used?
Glass and rock mineral wool are extremely versatile insulation materials which can be used in a wide range of buildings – including commercial buildings such as shops and offices; public sector buildings such as schools and hospitals; and residential houses and flats.
In residential buildings, there are three main areas where insulation would usually be found, which represent the three components of a building’s outer shell:
- The roof
- The floors
1. Wall Insulation
The walls of a home represent the largest surface through which heat can escape, and are consequently responsible for around 60 per cent of the heat lost from a typical un-insulated house. This is due to 35 per cent escaping through the walls, 15 per cent through the door and 10 per cent via the windows1.
Modern homes, particularly those built after 1920, are built with a space (called a cavity) between the internal and external walls, so heat loss can be minimised by filling this gap – where insulation material is blown into the cavity through a hole drilled in the outer wall. This must be done by a professional installer, but is a very simple procedure which results in excellent energy savings. The government’s Building Regulations now state that the walls of new homes must have a minimum standard of insulation.
Click here to find out more about cavity wall insulation.
Homes built before 1920, are often constructed with solid walls, which lose even more heat than cavity walls! This can be reduced by installing insulation on either the inside or outside surface and is one of the most impactful changes that can be made to a home.
Click here to request a free wall insulation survey.
2. Roof Insulation
Heat rises, causing a further 25 per cent1 of heat energy to escape through an un-insulated roof. Installing loft insulation is one of the most cost effective ways of improving the energy efficiency of a home – and it can be done without professional help in around 2-3 hours. There are a wide range of insulation products available at DIY stores. Look out for glasswool products made using recycled glass bottles and ECOSE® Technology for the most environmentally friendly solution.
The government’s recommended minimum depth of insulation is 270mm (27cm), however many homes have considerably less than this. Homeowners can check their existing levels of insulation by pushing a ruler down the side of one of the roof joists, additional layers of insulation can be added (if necessary) for maximum energy saving benefits.
Click here to find out more about loft insulation.
Insulation is used in ground floors for thermal insulation, and in intermediate floors for thermal and acoustic insulation.
You can find out more about floor insulation at www.knaufinsulation.co.uk.
1 Heat loss figures quoted are approximate, are provided for illustrative purposes only and are based on a semi-detached house with 3 bedrooms with no existing insulation.