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Why is Insulation Important and What insulation is made of?

2018-10-19 17:26:58
man roof 01

Insulation is an investment for the future comfort and energy efficiency of your home. The insulation products are made up of different core materials, which have varying levels of performance. However, the actual part is played by construction and assembly of these materials. If we talk about flammability, it generally depends on the level of the organic content in the product. The inorganic material generally is less flammable if compared to its counterpart.

Insulation slows the rate of heat transfer and keeps homes warmer in winter and cooler in summer. The heat typically gets transferred in three ways – Conduction, Convection & Radiation.

  • Conduction – The transmission of heat from the material through direct contact with another material. When insulating, you should always use a  material like Glasswool insulation, that is a poor conductor of heat.
  • Convection - In gases and liquids, the heat transfer that occurs is known as convection. Therefore, to reduce heat transfer due to convection, the insulation material should contain air pockets so that the air movement is minimized. Glasswool insulation is ideal as it consists of lots of small air pockets that minimizes the heat movement.
  • Radiation- The transmission of heat energy from a hot surface to a  cold surface moving through air or a vacuum. If an object comes in the path of heat energy, it absorbs it and turns it into heat. Glasswool insulation is a suitable material that provides a barrier to the radiant energy and therefore reducing heat transfer via convection and conduction.

Insulation plays an integral part in any new build or renovation project and it does not always need to be expensive. If installed accurately, insulation can play a  huge role in contributing to lower energy costs and increased comfort.

Some Advantages of having Insulation -

  • Lower your energy costs- An uninsulated or improperly insulated home can waste quite a considerable amount of energy in both heating and cooling and can put unnecessary strain on the heater or air conditioners. Properly insulating your home with the right type of products can save you money by reducing the pressure on your heating and cooling systems and can cut the cost by 20-30%
  • Reduce noise pollution - Insulation acts like an excellent sound absorber. The unwanted noise transmission through walls, ceilings and floors can be reduced by installing  Acoustic or Soundscreen insulation, making the home or work environment quieter.
  • Improve Thermal Comfort - Insulation significantly helps keep heat inside in winter and slows the heat flow from outside in summer, therefore making the building warmer in winter and more relaxed in summer. This more comfortable space is why people generally prefer thermal insulation.
  • Reduce Condensation - Condensation occurs on the inside surface when the temperature of the surface is at or below the dew-point of the air in contact with it. With proper air sealing techniques, insulation can help control the condensation, even in the spaces where moisture mostly gathers like attics or basements.

 The most common types of insulation sold in Australia :

  • Glasswool Insulation - the main ingredient in this insulation is recycled glass and sand, which means it does not catch fire quickly, does not rot or attract vermin. It is made from millions of tiny air pockets that give Glasswool its perfect thermal insulating properties. The insulation is easy to cut and simple to install
  • Polyester insulation – The main ingredient in this insulation is thermally bonded polyester fibre. It contains no breathable fibres which is extremely beneficial to the sufferers of asthma and dust allergies. The polyester material is hydrophobic which makes this insulation water-resistant and recyclable.
  • Rockwool or Mineral wool insulation - These insulation blankets or Batts are made from melting volcanic rock at high temperatures. This insulation is highly fire resistant and acts as a fire barrier if installed in a roof, walls or floors. Fires can still occur, especially if the installation of insulation is not done correctly like near the halogen downlights or the fans without adequately covering them.