Cavity wall insulation is one of the easiest and most effective methods of weatherizing your home and to make it easier and more affordable there are substantial government grants available through the Better Homes Energy Scheme scheme to all houses constructed before 2006 to upgrade the cavity wall insulation.
What is a Cavity Wall?
The external walls of most houses are constructed of two masonry (brick and block) walls, with a cavity (gap) between the two. Metal ties join the two walls together and usually there is a gap present allowing heat to escape.
Heat is lost from the interior of our homes through the external building envelope, and you can loss as much as 35% of heat through un-insulated or poorly insulated external cavity walls. Stopping this heat loss with retrofitting cavity wall insulation significantly reduces your heating bills and increases the comfort of your home.
Why is the Cavity there?
Wall cavities are there to prevent the rain that falls outside the brickwork from crossing into the inside of your home wall. The cavity allows water to drain to the bottom of the wall and then into the ground. Our insulation process seals the cavity from heat loss but still allows water to drain as normal.
What Materials are used?
Southern Green Homes uses InstaFibre blown mineral wool, which once installed in the cavity wall, forms an insulative barrier, which retains the heat inside your home. It works by storing the heat in the inner wall and radiating it back into the home – meaning that you will be able to turn your heating down without losing heat and comfort. Instafibre blown wool is chemical free and environmentally friendly. These materials that have been independently tested by both the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) and the British Board of Agrément (BBA).
How does the Filling Process Work?
For cavity wall insulation all works are carried out from the outside of the house, therefore there will be no dirt inside your home. As with any construction with drilling and cement use there will be minimal dust, but our policy is to leave your home better than we found it after any project. SGH installers inject the insulation between the inner and outer walls of the house, through small holes in the external wall using a high powered blowing machine.
The holes are drilled in a set pattern to ensure maximum fill of the cavity. The diameter of the holes are between 22- 26mm or similar to a 1 euro coin in size. The insulation is first blown into the bottom of the wall and as the cavity fills with insulation, Southern Green Homes’ trained technicians move up in a sequence until the entire cavity is filled right to the top with insulation.
When the insulation is in place between the cavity wall, this prevents heat loss through the walls hence reducing the amount of heating required to maintain a comfortable temperature. It works by storing the heat in the inner wall and radiating it back into the home by forming an insulative barrier, which is designed to retain the heat inside your home. As your home will now be able to maintain a constant temperature, condensation is be eliminated and draughts around badly fitting door and window frames can be greatly reduced or eliminated as the InstaFibre insulation will form a seal around these gaps. It increases your home’s energy efficiency and will also help to reduce your carbon footprint as your demand for fuel will decrease, saving you money on your heating bill.
After all the holes have been filled with InstaFibre, the SGH team will then make precise refilling the holes with carefully colour-matched mortar to blend in with the existing wall. If your house has a unique pebble dash or stone finish, we will match the texture when the motor is wet.
Having cavity wall installed reduces the heating required to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. Insulating your home through cavity wall insulation is the most cost effective way to improve your energy efficiency and reduce bills. With the help of government grants for insulation, it makes more sense to get your home insulated and it cost less than you’d imagine.
How Long does it take to Install Cavity Wall Insulation in my Home?
Southern Green Homes normally will have your cavity wall insulation installed in your home within a few hours. This depends on the size of the house, accessibility and the amount of exposed walls. For example, your average three-bedroom house will take us about 3-4 hours to install.
Is My Home Suitable for Cavity Wall Insulation?
Southern Green Homes is one of the few Cork companies to boast a in-house BER assessor. We will carry out an assessment of your home to see is it suitable for cavity wall insulation before work is undertaken. We provide advice at each stage of the insulation process and offer alternative insulation methods such as internal and external insulation if your home is losing heat but not suitable for Cavity Wall Insulation.
Can I install Cavity Wall Insulation myself?
Only trained and approved installers of cavity wall insulation like Southern Green Homes are certified to insulate the cavity walls and carry the specialised equipment necessary to complete the process. By choosing Southern Green Homes certified personal to install cavity wall insulation in your home, we can ensure that the job is carried out to the highest industry specifications, best practice and to adhere to the manufacturer’s guarantee with the product.
Is the Cavity Wall Insulation Guaranteed?
Yes. Cavity Wall Insulation comes with a 25 year guarantee or for the life of the building – the British Board of Agrément certificate confirms this. In addition, Southern Green Homes offers written guarantees for all of our projects and installations.
Will the Cavity Wall Insulation go into my Neighbours walls if I live in a Semi-Detached or Terraced House?
When necessary, Southern Green Homes installers insert a brush barrier between neighbouring walls. This will stop the cavity wall insulation from going into your neighbours walls and keeps the insulation within your property.
What is the Difference between the different types of Cavity Wall Insulation?
InstaFibre Wool versus Polystyrene Beads
Although all types of cavity wall insulation is similar in that they all retain heat and prevent heat loss, are all certified by NSAI, there are a number of advantages to using InstaFibre insulation over the polystrene bead insulation.
Cavity wall bead insulation cannot be installed in a cavity wall which has existing electrical cables that are not in a conduit. More than 50% of cases of existing housing stock, the main ESB cable is not in a conduit and therefore may have some issues at a later date. The beads can sometimes cause electrical cable to dissolve, emitting a toxic smoke and can also reduce the flexibility of the electrical cables which may cause the protection around them to crack. InstaFibre insulation can be blown into the cavity regardless of electrical cables as it will not react with them. Also as there is no glue involved in the installation process of InstaFibre compared to the installation of bead which is installed using glue therefore is room for error with glue lines getting blocked, etc.
How Much does Cavity Wall Insulation Cost?
Southern Green Homes offers the most competitive prices on the market using the highest quality product available, at the highest possible standard.
Cavity wall insulation prices do vary, depending on the size of house, size of the cavity wall, and where the wall is located. For example, in a three bedroom semi-detached house the client will end up paying between €400 – €500 for the completed work after the government grant.
With a minimum investment you can drastically improve your heat retention, comfort, and save thousands on your heating bill.
Most clients recover their initial investment in savings within the first year.
What Grants are Available?
SEAI offers grants of €300 for cavity wall insulation through the Better Homes Scheme. You home is eligible if built before 2006. Government regulations require that you use a registered contractor like Southern Green Homes in order to avail of the grant.
You can apply for a grant for cavity wall insulation by clicking here.
If you have questions before applying for the grant, please contact the Southern Green Homes team and we’ll be happy to discuss your options for weatherizing your home.