The pros and cons of loft and cavity wall insulation

Whether you’re a homeowner or a property organisation, insulation solutions provide you with a way of improving energy efficiency of your property. It’s one of the easiest ways to cut heating bills and create comfortable homes. If you’re considering installing insulation in your buildings, we’ve identified the pros and cons you should be weighing up.

Firstly, what is loft and cavity wall insulation? Loft insulation is a simple way to reduce heating lost through your roof, through adding material that conducts heat and prevents heat circulating in the loft space. Similarly, insulation can be blown between cavity walls to provide the same benefits by acting as an insulator.

There are several different ways that the energy efficiency of your properties can be measured and numerous options when it comes to insulation material and how it’s installed. The options allow professional inspectors and installers of insulation to ensure they use the right choice for each building and it’s location to deliver maximum benefits.

Why is insulation used in the loft and cavity walls?

Did you know that as much as 40% of the heat generated in your property is lost through the roof? And that even more is lost through your walls? Insulation provides you with a way of significantly reducing this percentage, leading to comfortable homes that require less heating, even through chillier winter months.

Insulation is one of the most effective ways at improving energy efficiency of properties. It’s simple, non-intrusive, and the benefits are immediate. With a lifecycle that is decades rather than years, loft and cavity wall insulation pays for itself relatively quickly when you consider how much heating bills are reduced by.

As the government increasingly introduces more energy efficiency measures and standards, insulation is often used in new builds. House builders must now meet minimum EPC ratings across the whole of their portfolio in order to sell properties and insulation is one of the most cost effective ways to instantly boost results. Compared to other energy efficiency measures, loft and cavity wall insulation is also simple to retrofit in older buildings. So, whether you’re property is being built or has stood for decades, insulation is an option that’s worth considering.

What are the benefits of insulation?

If you’re tempted by insulation in either your loft or cavity walls, there are four key benefits that might just tempt you.

  • Reduce energy bills – Through reducing the amount of heat lost through your roof and walls, loft and cavity wall insulation has an immediate effect on energy bills. It’s estimated that the average household can save as in excess of £250 every year through these simple steps.
  • Improve carbon footprint – If you’re environmentally conscious, the smaller carbon footprint of your property will be a plus too. Insulation ensures homes are more energy efficiency, reducing the amount of greenhouse gases that are emitted in connection with the property.
  • Additional selling point for properties – Whether you’re a housing building contractor  looking to sell your properties or looking for a tenant, improved EPC ratings give your property an additional selling point. Consumers now expect to have accurate energy efficiency ratings for properties they’re considering and knowing they could save money in the long run could seal the deal.
  • Simple solution – There are other methods to cut your energy bills but insulation provides the simplest solution. It’s relatively quick to install and once in place, it’s not something you have to consider again for years down the line.

Are there any drawbacks of loft and cavity wall insulation?

Of course, there are drawbacks to having insulation installed too. However, these can be mitigated or reduced if you take the right steps.

  • It can be expensive – While insulation does eventually pay for itself, the initial cost can be high for some homeowners. But don’t let that put you off. There are government grants and subsidies grants in place, paying for either all or part of the insulation costs, to provide you with support. So, if you’ve been given a quote that’s too high for your budget, it could be possible to reduce or even eliminate this barrier.
  • Not all materials and properties are suitable –While many homes can have insulation easily installed into their home, this isn’t always the case. Some homes, depending on location or structure, could actually become damaged if the wrong type of insulation is used. This is why it’s vital to have a reputable company complete a thorough assessment  before the insulation is installed. A trustworthy company will provide you with recommendations and advice to ensure the insulation performs at its best.
  • Potential to cause damp problems – Insulation, particularly that which is installed in cavity walls, can also cause damp problems should the material become wet. These issues are most commonly caused by improper material being used. Here at Extract Insulation, we use innovative climabead technology, which doesn’t hold on to moisture, to remove this concern. Damp issues can also arise if external walls become damaged, however, there is always the option to remove the insulation should this occur.
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