Why you should be checking your loft insulation
Posted on 18th June 2019 at 16:22
Keeping your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer is important, and one of the best ways you can protect your home is thermal loft insulation as the insulation essentially acts as a formal barrier between your home and the elements. Properly laid and effective loft insulation can save you hundreds of pounds on your energy bills every year, but unfortunately, many homes in the UK have poorly installed or under-regulation amounts in their lofts.
Check out some of our most frequently asked questions about why you should regularly be checking your loft insulation and other interesting facts!
Q. How thick should my insulation be?
A. Loft insulation should be, as best practise, at least 270mm thick. In previous years, the regulatory amount was only 100mm. If you haven't topped up your loft insulation within the last 5 years, it is worth checking what you have in place.
Q. Are there any indicators to watch out for that may mean my insulation isn't working properly?
A. Cold spots through-out the home or particularly high heating bills are both indicators of a poorly insulated loft. You can check how thick your insulation is by simply measuring the how deep it lays against the timbers.
Q. How many different type of insulation are there?
A. There are a number of different types of loft insulation that vary in terms of material, quality and installation process. They can however, be summarised into four sections; blanket insulation, loose-fill insulation, sheet insulation and blown-fibre. Our preferred insulation type that we use on a regular basis is a odourless, rat-proof brand of blanket loft insulation that benefits from a no added formaldehyde binder (70% less energy intensive).
Q. Can I also get my roof insulated?
A. Absolutely. Whilst the material you use will depend on what type of roof you have - pitched or flat - there are still a number of options available.
Q. My roof space isn't big enough for someone to stand up in, can I still get it insulated?
A. Many lofts do not have substantial headheight, though this isn't a problem when installing loft insulation. A loft conversion on the other hand, may not be possible...
Q. Can I lay the insulation myself?
A. Yes, and many homeowners would prefer to lay insulation themselves. However, if you have no experience with this type of project, it is generally best left to the professionals! Electrical wiring, ventilation, water tanks and existing rafters are all elements that need to be carefully accounted for. Protective gear must also be worn when installing most brands of insulation.
Q. Best installation practise?
A. Cut the insulation to manageable strips before starting - this will help carrying it up into the loft. Start in the furthest corner from the hatch under the eaves, and then work backwards. For lofts that already have insulation, simply lay the new insulation on top (insulation doesn't 'weaken' over time, the key is in the quantity). Place the first roll under the eave, remembering to leave a 25mm for ventilation, and continue across the loft. Press the insulation lightly against the joists so there are no visible gaps.
Q. Can I still use my loft space for storage?
A. Absolutely! The thickness regulations mean that insulation can comfortably fit beneath the loft boarding, therefore allowing you to effectively use every nook and cranny of your loft.
Check out our Dust Lining & Insulation page for more information.
The Loft Access Company have over 14 years experience in all things loft related - including installing loft insulation. If have any other questions or would like to book in a no-obligation survey, please get in touch. Thank you for reading!
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