It’s great news that the Chancellor has announced grant funding for homeowners to insulate their homes. Insulation is one of the most important actions you can take to reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions. If you’re thinking of upgrading the insulation in your home, here are my top tips for success.
- In most homes, the greatest heat loss is through the walls, followed by the roof. This means that insulating the walls is the top priority, followed by the roof.
- There are now many innovative insulation products available that can prevent heat loss from areas of your home such as solid walls, loft conversions, narrow roof and cellar spaces. You can even get insulation that is made from natural materials such as cork and hemp.
- When adding insulation to a home, extra ventilation is usually a good idea, to improve air quality. This might be ventilation grilles, low-energy extractor fans, mechanical ventilation with heat recovery, as well as making sure the insulation materials used are breathable.
- Choose an insulation contractor carefully. Look for companies that are members of schemes such as the Cavity Wall Insulation Guarantee Agency, or the Solid Wall Insulation Guarantee Agency, or who have accreditations such as PAS2030 or Green Deal Approved.
- Insulation is best as part of a whole-house approach to energy saving. My FREE workbook will help you to come up with a simple energy saving action plan for your home.
- Get independent advice on what are the most cost-effective energy saving measures for your home. Sign up to one of my energy saving advice packages for impartial advice that is personalised for your home and your family.
Top questions to ask an installer of insulation:
- Make sure they are going to insulate around the eaves of your loft. A reputable contractor will do this. A cowboy won’t bother. Check that they have done it.
- Ask them about insulating the loft hatch, with a loft pillow. Again, a reputable contractor will do this. A cowboy won’t bother, and leave your home with heat escaping through the loft hatch.
- Ask them about ventilation. A reputable contractor will understand that upgrading insulation involves upgrading ventilation too. A cowboy won’t be interested in the air quality in your home.
- Ask them what accreditations they have.
Don’t forget that most heat is lost through the walls, then the roof. If you have a cellar, then underfloor insulation is also a good idea. Double glazing is an important measure for sound insulation as well as giving some energy saving, but it is less cost-effective as an energy saving measure than wall or roof insulation.
Read a case study of Nigel and Marta, who have added insulation and ventilation, as well as other energy saving measures, to their typical post-war Birmingham home. They have achieved substantial and cost-effective fuel bill savings, as well as reducing their greenhouse gas emissions.
Download my FREE energy and water saving workbook for your home and start your action plan straight away.
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