Loft Insulation Guide

Things you need to know when insulating your loft

Attic insulation has become a necessity now days, especially bearing in mind that lofts are often transformed into dwelling, residential places where some basic living conditions must be fulfilled in order of enabling normal and enjoyable residence. One of the primary concerns is maintaining a constant temperature that is preventing the cold air from penetrating in during the winter and hot air during the summer, which can only make your loft unbearable to stay in. The most common solution is proper insulation that can not only protect your loft from undesired external temperature effects, but also make a significant impact and contribute to the overall energy efficiency of your home. This is why there are some things you need to know when insulating your attic and we provide some of the answers right here.

Basics and precautions

Before choosing and installing proper attic insulation, there are some things to consider and some precautions that must be taken into account. First off all, you must understand some potential problems that could occur in this type of insulation and some basic ways to prevent and overcome such problems. It is important to try to avoid thermal bypass that can occur at the eaves, then to avoid placing heavy objects on top that can crush air pockets between the fibers and reduce overall insulation effectiveness. Another great problem when insulating your attic is condensation, which could be avoided by proper ventilation across the roof, usually from eaves to eaves. Finally, it is very important to prevent air leakage from the rooms below, traveling through some ceiling penetrations (like wiring or light fixtures).

Loft insulation types

Blanket insulation

One of them is using batt or blanket insulation, which includes the use of mineral fiber, that is rock, glass or sheep wool fiber insulation, which is the most commonly used material. The basic advantage of this loft insulation type is that it is basically a DIY job and is particularly suitable for accessible spaces insulation. On the other hand, make sure to take the previously mentioned precautions, since some materials can cause skin irritations and bear in mind that these insulation materials can be to bulky and not always suitable for insulating small and tight places. Before installing insulation, make sure that the loft space is cleared up and that all the wiring is previously taken care of. After measuring the floor space length, this insulation material is laid between the joist, starting from the eves to the center of the loft, when the material is cut and pushed down the joists edges. The process is then repeated from the opposite side again to the center of the loft. Another layer can be placed across and over the joists so the overall insulation reaches the recommended depth of 270 mm. If you need to adjust the length of the insulation material, use scissors to cut it into right size and avoid any stretching or tearing which could damage the material and affect its thermal performance. Also remember to properly insulate the loft hatch as well by fixing a piece of insulation material on the top of the hatch.

Sheet or board insulation

Another way to insulate your loft is by using sheet or board insulation which includes the use of rigid boards in insulation, such as PIR, phenolic or polystyrene boards, cut to the right sizes. Their basic advantage is that the use of available wood boards is a more eco-friendly solution, they are especially applicable in loft conversions and have substantial performance, but can be more expensive than the alternatives. This type of material is placed between the roof rafters, but always leaving some space between insulation and roof tiles in order of providing needed ventilation and thus avoiding condensation.