What Can You Do To Insulate An Older Property?


All homes, whatever their size, age and location, should aim to be as warm and comfortable in the winter months, while not having huge energy bills, and not emitting any more CO2 than they absolutely must. And how is this achieved? Through heating and insulation, with the latter being the best way of reducing energy costs.

To know more about the different methods of insulating your home, check out the short guide below, and if you’re ready to insulate an older property, schedule a consultation with a reputable company such as One Insulation:

Roof insulation for older homes

To improve on a home’s overall efficiency and reduce energy bills, insulating the loft space of an older home is a great idea. If installed carefully (and always by a professional), thick insulating layers of up to 300mm in thickness laid in a loft, can contribute towards the property’s energy efficiency.

While insulation added above rafters, commonly referred to as sarking insulation, can be useful if installed with no gaps, in a continuous layer, it does raise the roof a little to make space for the insulations’ depth. In some instances, gables, gutters and ridges may have to be altered, something which can bump up the cost of roof insulation.

If insulation is added in between and beneath the roof’s rafters, this can be usually be done from inside the building. This is usually a cheaper option, but may involve some internal finishes being removed, which could add to the cost in a historical property.

Wall insulation for older homes

Many buildings built before 1920 have both solid external and internal walls, and these are not effective heat insulators. Unfortunately, insulating solid walls can be troublesome for these reasons:

  • Moisture may become trapped
  • The removal of skirting boards and architraves must be removed and refixed
  • It may reduce floor areas, and if in a small room, this could prove problematic

Insulation can be added to the exterior of solid walls, but with this likely to alter the building’s outward appearance, period property owners are generally not keen on this.

Floor insulation for older homes

With a lot of older properties built using traditional methods, their ground floors are made of timber and are suspended above a sub-floor that’s ventilated. To insulate the floor of an older property like this, insulating material is put between the joists beneath the floorboards, requiring access to the floor void. Should the void be shallow, however, then it will require the floorboards to be lifted up; a tricky job and one in which it can be easy to damage the floorboards, which are likely very old. Should the property have a cellar or basement, that might mean that underfloor insulation can be added from below.

Newer homes, on the other hand, are constructed on foundations that are made out of concrete, allowing for insulation to be put between the joists beneath the floorboards. Fortunately, heat loss through solid floors isn’t as much of an issue as heat loss from other areas of an older home.

If you want to know your options when it comes to insulating an older property, be sure to get your advice straight from a local company who specialize in insulating aging buildings. That way you’ll avoid getting into trouble with local building authorities, and can follow procedures that will respect the age of the property and your needs as its owner or resident.

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