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Your Build - Spring 2018

Phase 2 Framing Your build 44 Phase 1 Phase 3 Phase 4 Spring 2018 Phase 2 Season 2018 guide A to insulation Insulation is one of the easiest ways to prevent heat escaping a building, which will help to save money on bills and increase the thermal comfort of the occupants. Glass mineral wool insulation in particular can improve the acoustics of a property significantly, which will also contribute to the occupants’ comfort. But what insulation should you use and where should it be installed? Here Chris Roughneen, technical manager at Isover, gives Your Build the low down… When it comes to planning and designing your dream home, there are many factors that need to be taken in consideration. However, one of the most important elements to get right is the correct specification and installation of insulation. But before it comes to assessing the different types of insulation available on the market, it is vital to understand the requirements set out in Approved Document L1A and Approved Document E of the Building Regulations. Approved Document L1A governs the conservation of fuel and power in new dwellings and refers to calculation methodologies that are used to provide an overall Target Emission Rate (TER) for the new dwelling. The TER will be affected by those elements that directly consume energy, such as space and water heating and lighting, and also those elements that indirectly reduce the amount of energy being used by limiting heat loss through the fabric of the dwelling, such as the floor, walls and roof. By liaising with a reputable manufacturer, advice and guidance can be received on achieving the individual U-values required, which will in turn, help to comply with the TER. The second and some could say most important regulation is Approved Document E, which governs the resistance to the passage of sound within dwellings. The aim of this standard is to reduce noise transmission between and within residential dwellings. From noisy neighbours and high trafficked roads, to the humming of central heating or kitchen appliances, a home can encounter a variety of sounds, which are not just annoying, but can also have a major impact on the health and well-being of those occupying the property. As such, whether you are building your new home in the countryside, a small suburb or a bustling city, there will be a number of noise sources that you will need to consider in order to choose the correct acoustic insulation solution. When it comes to choosing an insulation material, glass mineral wool offers the greatest combination of benefits: it is easy to install, fireproof, sustainable, provides effective thermal performance and most importantly, it absorbs sound and drastically reduces the transfer of noise. It is also suitable for installation within a wide variety of situations too. For external walls, where heat loss will be an issue, there are a number of solutions available depending on the construction type. In traditional masonry builds where there is a cavity, it is highly recommended that this is fully filled with glass mineral wool. For timber frame structures, again the void between the timber studs should be fully filled with glass mineral wool and a smart vapour control and airtightness membrane installed over the inner face of the studs, such as Isover’s Vario XtraSafe. Vario XtraSafe is the latest development in airtightness and moisture management from Isover. It is a ‘smart’ vapour control layer, which adapts and reacts to changes within the internal environment, allowing the membrane to permit trapped moisture to escape from the structure in summer, whilst preventing moisture accumulation over the winter months. However, for internal walls and floors, the focus should be placed on the acoustic and sound absorption qualities of the insulation. The most effective way to combat the transfer of noise between internal rooms is to build a lightweight partition (constructed from either timber or metal studs), consisting of a sheet of plasterboard to each side of the studwork with glass mineral wool installed within the stud zone. By using this mass-spring-mass partition construction, you will be able to do all of the things you want to do in each room of the house, without disturbing other occupants. Similarly, insulation should also be installed within internal floors to enhance sound absorption within the floor void. If you decide to build a third floor within the pitched roof of a building, it will increase living space without increasing the footprint, which in turn will reduce building cost per m2. However, like the rest of the building, a pitched roof must be designed to meet Approved Document L1A. There are products that have been developed specifically for pitched roofs, such as Isover’s Metac. This is a high performance glass mineral wool ‘slab on a roll’ that provides an excellent thermal conductivity of 0.034W/mK, and also possesses impressive acoustic properties to reduce unwanted noise from outside elements. Available in 50–200mm thicknesses, Metac has been designed to suit an array of rafter depths and rafter centres and provides an A1 Euroclass fire rating. Isover offers a range of specialist mineral wool insulation products for a variety of applications, which will help self-builders to comply with the various building regulations, whilst building a house that is suitable for the hectic modern lifestyles the nation now leads. www.isover.co.uk


Your Build - Spring 2018
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