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What to do when your cavity wall insulation fails

Cavity wall insulation should mean you home is kept warmer, reducing your energy bills and carbon footprint in the process. But if your installation has failed it can lead to damp in your home and the benefits not being felt. Knowing where to turn if your installation has failed can be difficult but following our steps can help you get the issues resolved quickly and effectively.

It’s thought that thousands of homes across the UK have been affected by poorly installed insulation but the figure could be even higher as some of the defects remain hidden or are wrongly attributed to other factors. According to a survey conducted by thermal-imaging company IRT Surveys, as many as half of cavity wall insulation could be affected. The signs of cavity wall insulation failure could be as simple as noticing patches of damp on external walls or could be recognising that the installation isn’t delivering the energy saving benefits it should.

If you believe your cavity wall insulation installation has failed, either due to shoddy workmanship, the property being unsuitable or poor materials being used, these steps could help you:

  1. Minimise the damage – If you notice damp, condensation or another effect of poorly installed cavity wall insulation you should seek to minimise the damage as soon as possible. This could involve ensuring the rooms are properly ventilated to reduce the risk of mould and using a dehumidifier to draw out moisture.
  2. Contact CIGA – If you’re covered by the Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency’s (CIGA) guarantee, you will be covered for 25 years after the insulation has been installed both for the materials and workmanship. The guarantee covers registered installers in the UK and Channel Islands and contacting the independent agency could give you access to expertise and allow you to rectify the problem.
  3. Extract the insulation – The insulation that has been installed within your walls can be removed, eliminating the root cause of the problem. Independent extractors are often experienced at dealing with the problems poor quality or unsuitable cavity wall insulation has caused. They will be able to offer you advice and will understand the consequences it can have on you home.
  4. Reach out to an alliance – The Cavity Wall Insulation Victims Alliance was formed by people that had suffered due to poor cavity wall insulation themselves. The alliance has been lobbying trading standards departments and MPs to support those affected by cavity wall insulations that have failed and the organisation can be contacted if you’re experiencing problems.
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