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Winter is Coming: Property Insulation

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Insulating your property can be one of the most effective ways to reduce heat loss and cut energy bills.

If your house isn’t fully insulated, having insulation installed will not only help keep your home warmer, but it could also help you save you money on your energy bills.

Wall and loft insulation are amongst the most effective ways to reduce heat loss from your home and can really help to reduce your energy bills. Think of cavity wall insulation as a big coat for your house; the cavity between the two external walls is filled, preventing heat from escaping outside. Loft insulation acts in a similar way, preventing heat from escaping through the roof.

Loft insulation

Heat rises, and in an uninsulated home, a quarter of heat is lost through the roof. Insulating your loft, attic or flat roof is a simple and effective way to reduce heat loss and reduce your heating bills.

Loft insulation usually takes a couple of hours to install. It is simply rolled out and laid flat across the loft floor, between and over the joists if they are visible.  Loft insulation is effective for at least 42 years and it should pay for itself many times over.

Numbers from the Energy Saving Trust indicate that you could save, depending on the size of your home, up to £250 a year simply by adding roof insulation.

Cavity wall

About a third of all the heat lost in an uninsulated home escapes through the walls. Heat will always flow from a warm area to a cold one. In winter, the colder it is outside, the faster heat from your home will escape into the surrounding air.

Cavity wall insulation acts in the same way as your big coat you wear on a cold day. Filling the gap between the two external walls helps prevent warmth from escaping from your home in the same way your coat prevents heat escaping from your body.

It is generally suitable for properties built after the 1930s, where the external walls are made up of two layers with a small 'cavity' between them. The insulation is installed by drilling small holes in the mortar between the bricks and then pumping in the insulation material. This will take a couple of hours. The holes are then filled back in.

Solid wall

Insulating your solid walls could cut your heating costs considerably, because solid walls let through twice as much heat as cavity walls do. If your home was built before 1919, its external walls are probably solid rather than cavity walls. Cavity walls are made of two layers with a small gap or ‘cavity’ between them. Solid walls have no gap, so they let more heat through.

If your home has solid walls, you could save between £145 and £455 a year by installing solid wall insulation.