Month: July 2015

Adhere to building regs and keep valuable internal space

31 07/15
Adhere to building regs and keep valuable internal space with EWI

Adhere to building regs and keep valuable internal space with EWI

Any­one who has taken on a retro­fit project on a prop­erty will undoubt­edly know the dif­fi­culty in adher­ing to the cur­rent build­ing reg­u­la­tions. Get­ting the u-value of an exter­nal wall down to 0.3 W/m²k is no small feet to be hon­est and when space is a pre­mium, espe­cially here in Lon­don, there is noth­ing worse than pay­ing so much for a prop­erty only to then have to reduce the inter­nal use­able space because of the insu­la­tion require­ments.

Adhere to building regs with solid wall insulation

This is not a prob­lem if you use exter­nal solid wall insu­la­tion though – you will keep all the inter­nal space – and bet­ter still there is no upheaval of any inter­nal sur­face, so there is no need to move kitchen units or extend pipework to move radi­a­tors.

The whole exter­nal solid wall insu­la­tion job can be done from out­side the prop­erty (pro­vided water and elec­tric­ity are pro­vided to run the tools!), although you may have you win­dows cov­ered for a week or so while the job is car­ried out – this means no mess in the prop­erty!

With inter­nal space val­ued in excess of £5,000 per metre squared in Lon­don, any­thing you can do to keep this usable space in tact when you move in is obvi­ously a huge pos­i­tive.

The ben­e­fits of solid wall insu­la­tion don’t just stop there though – the insu­la­tion will reduce your energy bills and also pro­tect the under­ly­ing brick­work.

So if you are look­ing for a way to increase the ther­mal com­fort of your home, adhere to build­ing reg­u­la­tions and keep all that expen­sive usable space in your home then give us a call – we have insu­lated hun­dreds of solid wall prop­er­ties across Lon­don over the last 2 years with our solid wall insu­la­tion sys­tems.

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Bad news for those looking to get funding

27 07/15
The Green Deal and GDHIF are dead!

The Green Deal and GDHIF are dead!

It was announced last Thurs­day that the Gov­ern­ment have decided to can­cel the GDHIF scheme which had pre­vi­ously allowed house­holds in the UK to claim grants to help cover some of the cost of installing energy sav­ing mea­sures in the home, like our Exter­nal solid wall insu­la­tion.

On top of can­celling GDHIF, the Gov­ern­ment have also can­celled the Green Deal scheme – which was the finance option some peo­ple again were using to help cover the cost of installing these mea­sures.

When the Gov­ern­ment orig­i­nally launched the Green Deal scheme it was expected to be the ini­tia­tive that changed the face of the energy effi­ciency mar­ket in the UK. For the first time, peo­ple would not sim­ply get things installed for free; instead they would pay for the mea­sures through their energy bills.

It was to mark the end of the sub­sidy junkies, those who claimed new boil­ers, loft insu­la­tion and cav­ity wall insu­la­tion know­ing they wouldn’t need to pay a penny to get these mea­sures installed.

Well, after 18 months the scheme has now been killed off. Launched ini­tially in Feb­ru­ary 2013, hun­dreds of thou­sands of peo­ple in the UK have since had Green Deal assess­ments, but only a frac­tion of these peo­ple have then gone on to take up the Green Deal finance. In total it is has been esti­mated the Green Deal has cost in excess of £0.5 bil­lion to date – and the Gov­ern­ment could sim­ply not afford to keep prop­ping up the scheme finan­cially.

External solid wall insulation vs cavity wall insulation

19 07/15

External solid wall insulation vs a retro-fit cavity

Why exter­nal solid wall insu­la­tion is the answer – and a cav­ity wall insulation isn’t

Prop­er­ties built before the 1930s are almost always built with a sin­gle skin of brick, which leads to rapid heat loss, expen­sive heat­ing bills and a cold house. These prop­er­ties are now being retro-fit­ted with 100mm of exter­nal wall insu­la­tion, which brings down the U-Value, or heat trans­fer, to bet­ter than build­ing reg­u­la­tions. This means that the retro-fit­ted walls are becom­ing more energy effi­cient than new build prop­er­ties. How­ever, after the 1930s, build­ings started to be con­structed with a gap in between two skins of brick. This was designed to slow down the heat trans­fer from inside to out­side, and increase the effi­ciency of the prop­erty. The prob­lem is that these cav­ity walls were con­structed with­out any insu­la­tion, mean­ing that the heat trans­fer is still fairly rapid. There­fore mil­lions of peo­ple have now had these retro-fit­ted with insu­la­tion pumped into the cav­ity. How­ever, there is one prob­lem, it’s sim­ply not good enough.

Why do cav­ity walls have lim­i­ta­tions

A typ­i­cal cav­ity wall built prior to the 80’s has a gap of only 40mm. So you can fill this with as much insu­la­tion as you can squeeze in, but at the end of the day, when com­par­ing it to 100mm of exter­nal wall insu­la­tion you wont get any­where near the same effi­ciency. This explains why we get lots of peo­ple say­ing that their prop­erty is still cold after inject­ing their cav­i­ties with insu­la­tion. Although it’s a much cheaper method, it doesn’t get you towards cur­rent build­ing reg­u­la­tions.

External Wall Insulation – not just a winter warmer!

13 07/15
External Wall Insulation – not just a winter warmer!

External Wall Insulation – not just a winter warmer!

Every­one assumes that insu­la­tion is installed to help keep the home warm dur­ing the colder win­ter months.

The actual pur­pose of insu­la­tion is to slow the rate at which the tem­per­a­ture equi­lib­rium is met – that is to say the tem­per­a­ture inside and out­side the home are the same. While unlikely it would ever hap­pen, if you didn’t turn on any heat­ing in a house, even­tu­ally the inside tem­per­a­ture would match the exter­nal tem­per­a­ture – this is when the house would be in equi­lib­rium.

For­tu­nately for all of us it takes time for this to hap­pen, but it does hap­pen – and the big­ger the dif­fer­ence in tem­per­a­tures the quicker it hap­pens. How much quicker does your house feel cold in the win­ter months com­pared to the spring when the heat­ing goes off?

Slowing the rate at which temperature equilibrium is met!

The role of insu­la­tion is to slow the rate at which this tem­per­a­ture equi­lib­rium is met. As you might expect, a thicker layer of insu­la­tion will help slow down this move­ment of heat fur­ther. This means that even if the weather is extremely cold dur­ing the win­ter months, it will take much longer for the warm air in the home to cool down – this is the energy sav­ings we talk about.

The great news, and one that we have recently had high­lighted to us by one of our cus­tomers was the impact of the insu­la­tion dur­ing the recent heat wave we had here in the UK. Obvi­ously 35 degrees is quite nice if you are sat on the beach and have air con­di­tion­ing, but here in the UK we just aren’t ready for those types of tem­per­a­ture. We don’t have air con­di­tion­ing and so forth, so when it gets hot it nor­mally becomes uncom­fort­ably hot in the home, mean­ing dif­fi­culty in get­ting to sleep and other unfor­tu­nate side effects.

Installing Solid Wall Insulation in winter

06 07/15
Installing Solid Wall Insulation in the winter months

Installing Solid Wall Insulation in the winter months

In the UK, we nor­mally expe­ri­ence quite pro­longed peri­ods of cold weather dur­ing the win­ter months. This cou­pled with the reduced day­light really ham­per the abil­ity to install solid wall insu­la­tion dur­ing those months. The dif­fer­ent lay­ers within the solid wall insu­la­tion sys­tem take longer to dry and there­fore this can drive up the cost of instal­la­tion since the works take longer to com­plete.

The great news is that we can offer the EWI Pro fast dry­ing win­ter min­eral ren­der sys­tem dur­ing these cooler months at no extra cost to home­own­ers. The sys­tem dries that much quicker than our Sil­i­cone Sil­i­cate ren­der solid wall insu­la­tion sys­tem and there­fore it allows us to carry out the install in the same time frame despite the weather being cooler and our teams being on site for shorter peri­ods of time.

Quick Drying Adhesives & Renders!

The main com­po­nent of our win­ter solid wall sys­tem is EWI-221, a quick dry­ing adhe­sive, that offers many of the same unique qual­i­ties of our EWI-220 and EWI-225 adhe­sives (the ones we use nor­mally for EPS and min­eral wool respec­tively), except it goes off much quicker. This adhe­sive is incred­i­bly strong and so we are still able to offer our 25 year war­ranty on our win­ter solid wall insu­la­tion sys­tems.

If you have got fund­ing via a Gov­ern­ment scheme like GDHIF or a local bor­ough Green Deal Com­mu­nity Fund then it might be a pre-req­ui­site that you install the solid wall insu­la­tion and claim your grant by a cer­tain time. By offer­ing our win­ter sys­tem, Be Con­struc­tive can now install solid wall insu­la­tion all year around – help­ing peo­ple meet the strict dead­lines on their grant vouch­ers.

If you would like to install solid wall insu­la­tion on your prop­erty, why not give us a call. We work under the PAS2030 frame­work, which means we can install under the Gov­ern­ment Green Deal and Green Deal Home Improve­ment scheme. We also offer reg­u­lar train­ing to all our employ­ees ensur­ing they are using the lat­est tech­niques and also that they are adher­ing to our strict qual­ity con­trol require­ments.

If you want piece of mind that you are get­ting an expe­ri­enced installer to insu­late your prop­erty – call London’s favourite solid wall insu­la­tion installer, Be Con­struc­tive Ltd to see if we can help with your insu­la­tion project!