Insulation is designed to protect your home from the outside temperature, keeping you cool in the Summer and warm in the Winter. When insulation is installed, heat loss and gain is reduced, providing year round comfort. This maintenance of internal temperature means that energy bills are cut in half, meaning you not only save money but reduce your carbon footprint.
Ceiling insulation is designed to sit on the top surface of your ceiling in between the timber beams. This insulation is installed as a bulk insulation designed to resist conducted and convection heat. Commonly used materials include polyester, fibreglass, wool and rockwool. The different layers of these products create air pockets, which creates a thermal break between the external temperature in the roof and the internal temperature of your home.
Roof insulation sits on the underside of the roof and typically works on heat reflective. A highly reflective foil layer normally sits between the roof rafters and under the battens which hold it in place. Commonly known as sarking, this reflective foil looks to reflect up to 95% of radiant heat. More recently, new homes have been installed with Anticon, which is a reflective foil similar to anticon but features a fibreglass backing on the internal side. This product not only reflects radiant heat, but also works as an insulator resisting conduction and convection heat.
In Australia, all walls benefit from insulation. Depending on the construction of the external walls, there is a variety of solutions. Wall insulation can be installed within cavities, within stud frames, on the outside of stud frames or on the inside or outside of solid walls. Commonly in Australia we see three main types of wall construction; double brick, brick veneer and stud frame. With brick veneer and stud frames, bulk insulation like insulation batts are commonly installed in the construction process. With a double brick cavity, a reflective foil similar to sarking is wrapped around the home, acting as a reflective insulation and doubling up as a moisture barrier. For older homes, there is a range of retrofit cavity wall insulation products available.
Not all floors require underfloor insulation. Throughout Perth and Australia, there are a lot of homes with raised timber floorboards. These suspended floors can be responsible for up to 20% of your heat gain and heat loss throughout the seasons. When there is a clearance of typically 400mm between the floorboards and the ground, they can be accessed underneath and therefore insulated. Common underfloor insulation materials include expanded polystyrene in rigid boards, or a rigid fibreglass batt. These are fixed to the timbers underneath using specialised mounting brackets.