Independent loft insulation advice

Discussion in 'UK DIY' started by Broadback, Jun 11, 2006.

  1. Broadback

    Broadback Guest

    Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros and
    cons? All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and
    method. Thanks.
    Broadback, Jun 11, 2006
    #1
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  2. Broadback wrote:
    > Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    > advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros and
    > cons? All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    > and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and
    > method. Thanks.


    You have found it right here.
    The Natural Philosopher, Jun 11, 2006
    #2
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  3. Broadback

    Dave Guest

    "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    > advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros and
    > cons? All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    > and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and method.
    > Thanks.


    Sorry, I can't answer your question but I know someone on this group either
    is, or was, involved in the insulation industry so I'm sure you'll get a
    good answer soon.

    I'm sure you have your own reasons for wanting to do such research but I'm
    just curious as to why. You are aware that *anyone* can get discounts and/or
    grants from almost any utility company (npower, BG, Powergen etc., etc)
    under a government initiative - you just pay the vastly reduced fee and let
    them worry about what to use and how to do it.

    About a year ago we had both cavity wall and loft insulation done through
    either npower or powergen - can't remember which one - and the total cost
    for both labour and materials was less than if I'd bought the loft
    insulation from Wickes - and both jobs come with a 25-year guarantee.

    Dave
    Dave, Jun 11, 2006
    #3
  4. Broadback wrote:
    > Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    > advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros and
    > cons?


    With respect, your query at this moment is like the traditional
    question about a piece of string.

    Please come back with basic facts about your attic and house - approx
    size; depth of joists (and of the rafters holding the slates/tiles up),
    has it a boarded floor, any dormer windows or roof lights? Any
    insulation up there now - if so, what? Looking wider afield any
    unlagged hot water pipes? Solid or cavity walls?

    With that info maybe we can focus on your specific needs.

    BTW if your DHW ( immersion heater) tank is uninsulated that should be
    your no 1 priority. Sling a warm woolen blanket over it pronto (but
    don't cover the black top of the electric element where the leads
    enter) until you can buy a proper cylinder jacket.


    All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    > and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and
    > method. Thanks.


    common problem

    HTH
    jim_in_sussex, Jun 11, 2006
    #4
  5. Broadback

    Broadback Guest

    jim_in_sussex wrote:
    > Broadback wrote:
    >> Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    >> advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros and
    >> cons?

    >
    > With respect, your query at this moment is like the traditional
    > question about a piece of string.
    >
    > Please come back with basic facts about your attic and house - approx
    > size; depth of joists (and of the rafters holding the slates/tiles up),
    > has it a boarded floor, any dormer windows or roof lights? Any
    > insulation up there now - if so, what? Looking wider afield any
    > unlagged hot water pipes? Solid or cavity walls?
    >
    > With that info maybe we can focus on your specific needs.
    >
    > BTW if your DHW ( immersion heater) tank is uninsulated that should be
    > your no 1 priority. Sling a warm woolen blanket over it pronto (but
    > don't cover the black top of the electric element where the leads
    > enter) until you can buy a proper cylinder jacket.
    >
    >
    > All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    >> and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and
    >> method. Thanks.

    >
    > common problem
    >
    > HTH
    >

    What I was hoping is information on the relative cost and effectiveness
    of the various insulating materials, ease to lay. How effective it is
    to insulate under the roof as opposed to the loft floor. I live in a
    bungalow and have a combi boiler. All the cabling is in the attic and
    most of the central heating piping but nowt else. Most of the flooring
    is boarded but I am willing to remove all that as loft storage is not
    needed. There is no insulation whatsoever at the moment. Is it truly
    cheaper to have it done professionally with grants that DIY? We claim
    no income support or such like, though are both pensioners. Owt else needed?
    Broadback, Jun 11, 2006
    #5
  6. Broadback wrote:
    > jim_in_sussex wrote:
    > > Broadback wrote:


    /snip///

    > >

    > What I was hoping is information on the relative cost and effectiveness
    > of the various insulating materials, ease to lay. How effective it is
    > to insulate under the roof as opposed to the loft floor. I live in a
    > bungalow and have a combi boiler. All the cabling is in the attic and
    > most of the central heating piping but nowt else. Most of the flooring
    > is boarded but I am willing to remove all that as loft storage is not
    > needed. There is no insulation whatsoever at the moment.


    That's most of what I was after, but I was hoping you'd say how long
    the piece of string is ;-) ie how thick/deep are the joists & distance
    apart ( eg 75x45 at 600 centres)- both the ones holding the ceiling up
    & the ones holding the roof & the rough length & breadth of the attic.
    + approx age of your home.

    Problem is your query is quite general & a book could be written about
    all the ins and outs of different insulation methods, so any response
    here needs to be focussed on your situation.

    Is it truly
    > cheaper to have it done professionally with grants that DIY? We claim
    > no income support or such like, though are both pensioners.


    Suggest you divide your problem into 2.

    Problem 1 What is the best method(s) for your home?

    Problem 2 How and/or who is to instal your chosen method. This will
    involve looking around the sheds & maybe builders merchants at prices +
    you deciding if you are agile enough to do the job (I mention that as
    you say you are pensioners) + discovering cost of someone else doing it
    for you -possibly with a grant (I've heard it is free in some places or
    for some people).

    But do check out problem 1 FIRST you will know what to ask potential
    installers AND the chance of being sold down the river is less.

    Generally speaking attic insulation isn't a difficult job but there are
    exceptions..

    Owt else needed?

    Please come back with info as above & I'll try to respond.
    jim_in_sussex, Jun 11, 2006
    #6
  7. Broadback

    Steve Guest

    "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > jim_in_sussex wrote:
    >> Broadback wrote:


    There is no insulation whatsoever at the moment. Is it truly
    > cheaper to have it done professionally with grants that DIY? We claim no
    > income support or such like, though are both pensioners. Owt else needed?


    Absolutely - that's why, in my earlier posting, I wondered why you were
    looking at DIYing. My mum lives in a victorian mid-terraced house, pensioner
    like you and claims no extra benefits. The house doesn't have cavity walls
    so loft insulation only was needed. It was done about 14 months ago through
    Powergen (I think) and cost her £109 - yes, that's just £109. Superb job
    with 25-year guarantee.

    My wife and I live in a 3-bed semi-det. dormer bungalow and got both loft
    and cavity wall insulation done for a few bob less than £400 (and we're both
    in full-time employment). If I can find the paperwork, I'll scan it in so
    that anyone who wants the details can see them.

    Dave.
    Steve, Jun 11, 2006
    #7
  8. Broadback

    Broadback Guest

    Steve wrote:
    > "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> jim_in_sussex wrote:
    >>> Broadback wrote:

    >
    > There is no insulation whatsoever at the moment. Is it truly
    >> cheaper to have it done professionally with grants that DIY? We claim no
    >> income support or such like, though are both pensioners. Owt else needed?

    >
    > Absolutely - that's why, in my earlier posting, I wondered why you were
    > looking at DIYing. My mum lives in a victorian mid-terraced house, pensioner
    > like you and claims no extra benefits. The house doesn't have cavity walls
    > so loft insulation only was needed. It was done about 14 months ago through
    > Powergen (I think) and cost her £109 - yes, that's just £109. Superb job
    > with 25-year guarantee.
    >
    > My wife and I live in a 3-bed semi-det. dormer bungalow and got both loft
    > and cavity wall insulation done for a few bob less than £400 (and we're both
    > in full-time employment). If I can find the paperwork, I'll scan it in so
    > that anyone who wants the details can see them.
    >
    > Dave.
    >
    >

    As I see it the professional installers will do it the cheapest way for
    them, that may not be the best way. Though of certain years thankfully
    I am pretty fit and still do all my DIY, at the moment I am completely
    refurbishing my daughters house. Ideally I would like to decide which
    material to use, even what materials are available. Experience tells me
    that my joists will not be the distance apart to fit standard rolls
    (sod's law)! What about loose insulation material or other than fibre
    glass, surely they do not all have the same insulation qualities,
    therefore need not all be the same depth. In my ignorance I had hoped
    there might be a source where all these type of things are laid out so
    that I can decide what is best suited for me. Judging from these
    answers, (do find them useful thanks) that is not so.
    Broadback, Jun 11, 2006
    #8
  9. Broadback

    Dave Guest

    "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Steve wrote:
    >> "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    >> news:...
    >>> jim_in_sussex wrote:
    >>>> Broadback wrote:

    >>
    >> There is no insulation whatsoever at the moment. Is it truly
    >>> cheaper to have it done professionally with grants that DIY? We claim
    >>> no income support or such like, though are both pensioners. Owt else
    >>> needed?

    >>
    >> Absolutely - that's why, in my earlier posting, I wondered why you were
    >> looking at DIYing. My mum lives in a victorian mid-terraced house,
    >> pensioner like you and claims no extra benefits. The house doesn't have
    >> cavity walls so loft insulation only was needed. It was done about 14
    >> months ago through Powergen (I think) and cost her £109 - yes, that's
    >> just £109. Superb job with 25-year guarantee.
    >>
    >> My wife and I live in a 3-bed semi-det. dormer bungalow and got both loft
    >> and cavity wall insulation done for a few bob less than £400 (and we're
    >> both in full-time employment). If I can find the paperwork, I'll scan it
    >> in so that anyone who wants the details can see them.
    >>
    >> Dave.

    >
    > As I see it the professional installers will do it the cheapest way for
    > them, that may not be the best way.


    Well you may be right there, I don't know. I'm not even sure that there is a
    *best* way as such - the regs dictate a certain outcome has to be achieved
    and so as long as it *is* achieved, what does it matter whether it's done
    this way or that. If it was a decorative job or something on view or used
    every day then fair enough but insulation is fit and forget - at least for
    the 25-year guarantee period anyway :eek:)

    All I can say is that there are certain regulations and certain criteria to
    be met for insulation and the jobs that both we and my mum have had done
    have been done professionally (inspectors come out to check the quality on
    completion), efficiently, and very cheaply, with good quality materials.

    Admittedly, we weren't given a choice of insulation materials and/or methods
    (even if we had, I know nothing about it so it would have made no difference
    anyway) but that didn't matter to us. We now have a fully insulated loft and
    cavity walls, professionally done to a high standard, that meets current
    rules and regs, and a 25-year guarantee, all for a shade under £400 and all
    without me even breaking sweat.

    > Experience tells me that my joists will not be the distance apart to fit
    > standard rolls (sod's law)!


    That's the installers problem, not yours. They are professionals, let them
    do the job they're being paid for :eek:) Having said that, I do appreciate
    that not all professionals do as good a job and I do admit that we've been
    lucky in having excellent workmen and a thorough inspection afterwards - so
    if you take my advice and it all goes wrong, you can't blame me <big grin>.

    I like DIY myself but when we could get the whole job done for less than the
    cost of materials alone, it just seemed silly not to.

    >What about loose insulation material or other than fibre glass, surely they
    >do not all have the same insulation qualities, therefore need not all be
    >the same depth. In my ignorance I had hoped there might be a source where
    >all these type of things are laid out so that I can decide what is best
    >suited for me. Judging from these answers, (do find them useful thanks)
    >that is not so.


    I wish you all the best whatever you decide to do, my friend.

    Dave.
    Dave, Jun 11, 2006
    #9
  10. Broadback wrote:

    > As I see it the professional installers will do it the cheapest way for
    > them, that may not be the best way.


    <begin rant> Very possibly, & some will come out to see how much you
    can afford, but with respect, you have been asked for a few very basic
    figures about your attic. Having those nos in hand would have made
    it far easier to visualize your problem and offer pertinent
    observations. Again with the very greatest respect, if you do indeed
    find simple measuring difficult (I'm not so nimble with the figures
    myself these days) then it might very well be in your best interests to
    turn the job over to a commercial firm. <end of rant>



    Though of certain years thankfully
    > I am pretty fit and still do all my DIY, at the moment I am completely
    > refurbishing my daughters house. Ideally I would like to decide which
    > material to use, even what materials are available.


    Good. I shall assume your 1960 built bungalow has a plan area 11m x
    8m;the ceiling joists are 100x50mm on 400mm (aka 16ins) centres and
    the whole ceiling is normal 12mm plasterboard & there are no dormer
    lights, and there is no cold water cistern.

    Answer first. Snags second. Alternatives third.

    By far the most common solution would be 100mm thick
    rockwool/fibreglass rolled in to fill between the gap between the
    joists. Standard fibreglass rolls 400mm wide are an overfit which is
    actually a pro not a con - see below. Insert the roll to make a flat
    bottomed U - tight to the joist sides & a slight dip at the middle top,
    avoid squashing the material. For other joist centres fibreglass
    easily slices longitudinally with a sharp kitchen knife or carver, but
    keep to a tight fit.. Then another 100mm or 150mm thickness rolled
    across the joists (at right angles to the first layer).

    Pros:the method is so boringly common that if & when you come to sell
    your home no one will bat an eyelid. It might even get extra ticks by
    being 200mm or 250mm thick. Plus the materials are readily available
    in almost every shed and builders yard, generally at reasonable prices.
    A further plus point is that fibreglass holds up well in fire - in
    marked contrast to some other materials (eg polystyrene).

    Cons: You have CH & HW pipes and electric cables in the roof space and
    the space is partly boarded. Fibreglass type materials are decidedly
    itchy and I for one don't trust it. Handling it always leaves me
    itching especially around my cuffs and the dust leaves me with a
    ticklish cough for days or weeks on end. It is all too reminiscent of
    asbestos, which as you will remember, I'm sure, was never going to do
    anyone any harm. You are also missing a cheap money saving trick (see
    later). On top of that, not having an attic usable for storage might
    turn away potential buyers - me for one. You have also hindered
    maintenance access.

    If you do decide to lay your own fibreglass (rockwoool etc are all just
    variants on a theme using different silicate sources) Get one of those
    cheap throwaway paper-ish coverall suits; a face mask; all enclosed
    safety glasses, gloves (no air gaps) & a balaclava style head covering.
    Use parcel tape or duct tape to seal up gaps in the outfit especially
    where bare skin shows through. Which gives another con: you'll be
    dripping with sweat after a few minutes in the attic, so maybe the job
    is best done on a cool day in Autumn, just before your CH comes back
    on. Chuck all the gear away when done.

    ----------------
    So time to take a step back and see how things can be improved.

    It helps enormously to understand 2 numbers called U (or U-value) and
    R. Of the 2, U is the simplest to understand. Using it you can work
    out immediately how much heat leaks out through the wall or ceiling &
    thus how much of your heating bill is going through that wall or
    ceiling. U x area x temperature difference = size of heater required
    in watts. The lower you can make U the lower your heating bills.

    Example:if your bungalow has just half inch (12mm) plasterboard
    ceilings and nothing much else between you and the stars, it would have
    a U value around 13. On a temperature difference of 20deg C (eg inside
    =18, outside = -2) it will take 1150watts (1.15kW) (ie U=13 x 20deg x
    11mm x 8m) to make up for the heat loss through the ceiling alone [ nb
    more goes through the outside walls]. An elec fire of 1150 watts on
    all the time would put about £250 on a quarterly elec bill. Make that
    200mm of fibreglass and U drops to 0.18 and the bill drops to £4 or
    less.

    You will see R=0.035 (or thereabouts) printed on the wrapping of many
    fibreglass rolls. R is thermal conductivity. R measures heat
    transmission through a 1m square block of material 1m thick. U can be
    calculated from R but it is a little tricky when there's several layers
    with different thicknesses and R values.

    Some typical values for R from a table I've just consulted : fibreglass
    0.040; polystyrene 0.035; timber 0.14; plasterboard 0.16. The lower R
    is, the better the material insulates.

    How do insuulation materials work? Heat is lost upwards mostly by air
    convection and radiation. In most cases insulants work by trapping air
    (which is quite a good thermal insulator) in small bubbles and thus
    stopping it forming convection currents. They also form a mass block
    to heat radiation, but OTOH introduce material which conducts a small
    amount of heat. If you look at values of R for the common products on
    the market most are in the range 0.030 to 0.040. It's an indication
    perhaps that there are basic physical limitations to further
    improvement in R from trapped air insulation methods. ie you won't do
    much better insulation-wise by using a different material. The
    implication is that for more insulation you just have to pile it on
    thicker. There are some semi-rigid sheets (mainly meant for
    refrigeration use) about which go down to R=0.020, but you'd need to
    cut accurately and seal any air gaps. Perhaps a hybrid solution could
    be tried, but the sheets tend to be expensive and once you've piled
    fibreglass on top, there won't have been much saving in finished
    thickness.

    >From time to time various pour in fills based on pellets have been

    marketed (mica and perlite come to mind), but don't seem to stick
    around - perhaps due to cost? They do however offer a low irritant
    level. There might be a containment problem.

    Polystyrene works by trapping carbon dioxide (that well known
    greenhouse gas) in small bubbles. It can be fire proofed though not
    very well in my opinion, indeed I'd rule it out due to its poor fire
    properties. Again you have the trouble of making rigid sheets fit
    tightly in the joists. OTOH it does offer low level irritancy.

    Look at the R for timber - when you have done the first fill between
    joists, it is an indication that the timber joists are now the leakiest
    part heat loss-wise. That is why the top layer is rolled across at
    right angles.

    ---------

    Next point is overall roof design. There's two basic types of
    insulated roof - warm and cold. If you want to use the space for an
    attic room then you need a warm roof and insulation must be put up
    against the underside of the roof. However, the predominant fashion
    now is for a cold roof. This means insulation lying directly on the
    ceiling and cold air is allowed to circulate in the atic space. The
    claimed advantages is that roof timbers do not dry out and are less
    liable to warp and rot. That seems to be what you'd like.

    The disadvantage in your case is the presence of electric cable and
    water pipes. If you insulate this roof really well then sod's law says
    that some part of the exposed pipes will freeze in a cold winter
    (because you no longer have heat rising through the ceiling keeping
    your attic frost free). Remedy is to specifically insulate all the
    pipe runs prior to fibreglass installation with a good pipewrap.
    Climaflex (made of a semi-rigid foam - www.nmc.com) is perhaps the
    commonest in use at the moment and is easy to use. Paradoxically small
    diameter pipes need thicker insulation than thick ones, however don't
    stint on the thickness: thick climaflex is cheaper than a burst pipe
    and will repay with lower CH bills.

    Ideally additional ventilation should be added to the roof - commonly
    cold roofs are vented at the eaves and near the apex. I doubt you will
    want to go that far, but by not doing so you run a small risk that your
    roof will distort.

    Your other bugbear is the electric cables. These must NOT be covered
    by insulation. On at least one side they should lie on material (eg
    timber or plasterboard) with a high R. On other sides they need a
    clearance of at least 50mm (2ins) from any insulation material. The
    problem is that heat generated inside the cables cannot escape through
    the insulation and leads to the PVC insulation hardening. Also NB
    contact with Polystyrene rots PVC FTE cable. If you neglect this you
    will end up (sooner on an old house) with an expensive rewire needed.
    You should also check that cables are kept a distance away from CH & HW
    pipes.

    Draughts in the roof space will generate dust from the fibreglass,
    which in the worst case could blow all your precious fibreglass into
    the world outside (and has been known to, though that does take a
    decade or 2). There was a suggestion in this news group a few years
    ago of spraying the surface with a dilute PVA solution to give a hard
    sealing coat. Could you make up the existing joists to 200mm with
    timber noggings & then put back the flooring? You'd have to run all
    the fibreglass in the same direction, but the up side is that you'd
    have an attic which remains usable for storage; and perhaps equally
    important you'd retain easy access for maintenance, plus the fibreglass
    dust is boxed in.

    Almost done. Now, that trick that's been missed. You can cheaply
    reflect back some of the heat being radiated through the ceiling by
    laying ordinary kitchen aluminium foil on top of the ceiling
    plasterboard. Lay it shiny side down, avoid crinkling it, and hold in
    place by a few dabs of glue. The final insulation (fibreglass, mica or
    whatever) goes on top of the foil

    If you can get all of that free (well not really - I pay Gordie Brown
    for it, & Gordie passes the money on, after commission, to your
    installer), why not try?

    After it is done you can check that the pipework & cables have been
    correctly dealt with and improve the job if you wish.



    Experience tells me
    > that my joists will not be the distance apart to fit standard rolls
    > (sod's law)! What about loose insulation material or other than fibre
    > glass, surely they do not all have the same insulation qualities,
    > therefore need not all be the same depth.


    <begin final rant> But you asked for advice and are now making
    assumptions as to what that advice should be. Your assumptions are
    substantially incorrect. I'd wager you have joists on 400mm (16in)
    centres as that was more or less standard for decades until trussed
    roofs came in, but you do find exceptions. If you had provided the
    basic dimensions it might have been possible to suggest ways of mixing
    and matching standard rolls to your attic. Oversized fibreglass rolls
    tend to trap more air at joist/ceiling corners = better U. There isn't
    that much difference in R between materials it is the other physical
    characteristics + convenience + cost that decides the issue. For a
    given final U, depth of insulation will be much the same..<end final
    rant>

    HTH
    jim_in_sussex, Jun 13, 2006
    #10
  11. "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > jim_in_sussex wrote:
    >> Broadback wrote:
    >>> Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    >>> advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros and
    >>> cons?

    >>
    >> With respect, your query at this moment is like the traditional
    >> question about a piece of string.
    >>
    >> Please come back with basic facts about your attic and house - approx
    >> size; depth of joists (and of the rafters holding the slates/tiles up),
    >> has it a boarded floor, any dormer windows or roof lights? Any
    >> insulation up there now - if so, what? Looking wider afield any
    >> unlagged hot water pipes? Solid or cavity walls?
    >>
    >> With that info maybe we can focus on your specific needs.
    >>
    >> BTW if your DHW ( immersion heater) tank is uninsulated that should be
    >> your no 1 priority. Sling a warm woolen blanket over it pronto (but
    >> don't cover the black top of the electric element where the leads
    >> enter) until you can buy a proper cylinder jacket.
    >>
    >>
    >> All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    >>> and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and
    >>> method. Thanks.

    >>
    >> common problem
    >>
    >> HTH
    >>

    > What I was hoping is information on the relative cost and effectiveness of
    > the various insulating materials, ease to lay. How effective it is to
    > insulate under the roof as opposed to the loft floor. I live in a
    > bungalow and have a combi boiler. All the cabling is in the attic and most
    > of the central heating piping but nowt else. Most of the flooring is
    > boarded but I am willing to remove all that as loft storage is not needed.
    > There is no insulation whatsoever at the moment. Is it truly cheaper to
    > have it done professionally with grants that DIY? We claim no income
    > support or such like, though are both pensioners. Owt else needed?


    Put in counter joists to the existing joists, screwed where they meet.
    These need only be in the centre of the loft where you walk. Install
    Rockwool insulation in the now higher gap. Cover with T&G boards. In the
    part of the loft where there is no boards lay insulation thicker.

    Take a silicon gun and seal around all cables and pipes entering the loft
    and any gaps you see. Make sure the loft door is sealed and insulated.

    After installing the counter joists you may get the grant. Once laid, screw
    down the boards. The installer will just lay the insulation.

    With a bungalow the largest area is the loft/ceiling. Insulate this well,
    eliminate draughts and you will gain in winter and summer.

    If you want the best job, use Warmcell sprayed-in insulation. This seals
    all the air gaps and gives the performance of Rockwool which is 25% thicker.
    Not cheap but V good and effective.
    Doctor Drivel, Jun 13, 2006
    #11
  12. Broadback

    Broadback Guest

    Doctor Drivel wrote:
    >
    > "Broadback" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> jim_in_sussex wrote:
    >>> Broadback wrote:
    >>>> Can anyone please point me to a web site that will give me independent
    >>>> advice on loft insulation, both type of insulation and methods, pros
    >>>> and
    >>>> cons?
    >>>
    >>> With respect, your query at this moment is like the traditional
    >>> question about a piece of string.
    >>>
    >>> Please come back with basic facts about your attic and house - approx
    >>> size; depth of joists (and of the rafters holding the slates/tiles up),
    >>> has it a boarded floor, any dormer windows or roof lights? Any
    >>> insulation up there now - if so, what? Looking wider afield any
    >>> unlagged hot water pipes? Solid or cavity walls?
    >>>
    >>> With that info maybe we can focus on your specific needs.
    >>>
    >>> BTW if your DHW ( immersion heater) tank is uninsulated that should be
    >>> your no 1 priority. Sling a warm woolen blanket over it pronto (but
    >>> don't cover the black top of the electric element where the leads
    >>> enter) until you can buy a proper cylinder jacket.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>> All I seem to be able to find are sellers, who have axes to grind
    >>>> and Government sponsored sites that do not give advice to type and
    >>>> method. Thanks.
    >>>
    >>> common problem
    >>>
    >>> HTH
    >>>

    >> What I was hoping is information on the relative cost and
    >> effectiveness of the various insulating materials, ease to lay. How
    >> effective it is to insulate under the roof as opposed to the loft
    >> floor. I live in a bungalow and have a combi boiler. All the cabling
    >> is in the attic and most of the central heating piping but nowt else.
    >> Most of the flooring is boarded but I am willing to remove all that as
    >> loft storage is not needed. There is no insulation whatsoever at the
    >> moment. Is it truly cheaper to have it done professionally with grants
    >> that DIY? We claim no income support or such like, though are both
    >> pensioners. Owt else needed?

    >
    > Put in counter joists to the existing joists, screwed where they meet.
    > These need only be in the centre of the loft where you walk. Install
    > Rockwool insulation in the now higher gap. Cover with T&G boards. In
    > the part of the loft where there is no boards lay insulation thicker.
    >
    > Take a silicon gun and seal around all cables and pipes entering the
    > loft and any gaps you see. Make sure the loft door is sealed and insulated.
    >
    > After installing the counter joists you may get the grant. Once laid,
    > screw down the boards. The installer will just lay the insulation.
    >
    > With a bungalow the largest area is the loft/ceiling. Insulate this
    > well, eliminate draughts and you will gain in winter and summer.
    >
    > If you want the best job, use Warmcell sprayed-in insulation. This
    > seals all the air gaps and gives the performance of Rockwool which is
    > 25% thicker. Not cheap but V good and effective.
    >

    Thank you all for your help. The biggest problem is going to be the
    cabling, some of it runs over the top of the joists and some is cleated
    onto the side of the joists, so it looks like I will have to spend some
    happy hours up there adjusting the wiring, I don't suppose the cables
    will have enough slack to bring above the level of the insulation. I
    have started the ball rolling on finding out about grants, however my
    local council do not seem to be among those listed on the relative web
    site. Subscribers to the "Loose fill insulation" thread do not seem to
    rate the paper based loose fill.
    Broadback, Jun 13, 2006
    #12
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