Cavity wall insulation
Our quick Q & A could help you stay warm and save money
According to government estimates there are at least 5.8 million homes in the UK that still need cavity wall insulation*. And if your home is one of them, you could make valuable savings by reducing all that lovely, cosy, expensive warmth that disappears through your walls. You may have heard of a flagship government initiative called the Green Deal, and here’s a simple Q & A that could put you on the path to warmer winters and smaller bills:
Q. So what’s a cavity wall?
A. A cavity wall is actually two walls, with a gap in between them known as the cavity.
Q. And how do I know if my home has a cavity wall?
A. If your home was built from the 1920s onwards, chances are it has cavity walls. Though if it was built in the last 20 years or so the cavity is probably already insulated. If your home is brick-built, take a look at the pattern of the bricks. With a cavity wall, bricks will usually have a regular pattern. Solid walls are more likely to be in an alternating pattern.
Q. How much heat do I lose through my walls?
A. If your house is uninsulated, around a third of the heat you lose goes through your walls.**
Q. And how much is that costing me?
A. On average, you could save around £140 a year just by insulating your walls.**
Q. What will cavity wall insulation cost?
A. Based on a gas-heated, semi-detached 3 bedroom home, installation is likely to cost around £450 to £500.** So you should make your money back within the next four years. You may qualify for free cavity wall insulation if you’re eligible,*** or you could pay for cavity wall insulation under the Green Deal.
Q. What if my walls are damp, can I still go ahead?
A. If there’s damp on your inside walls, don’t insulate until that problem is fixed. Talk to a recommended builder who specialises in damp prevention.
Q. How long will the job take, and how much mess will there be?
A. On an average house with easily accessible walls, a registered installer can do the job in around two hours, with no mess at all.
Q. Who can I trust to do the job?
A.Your installer should be a member of one of these organisations:
- National Insulation Association (NIA) (Go to the NIA website)
- Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency (CIGA) (Go to the CIGA website)
- British Board of Agrément (BBA) (Go to the BBA website).
You should also check that:
- Your installer is signed up to a code of professional practice like the one provided by the NIA
- The installation is guaranteed for 25 years by CIGA
Q. And will I have done my bit for the environment?
A. You certainly will. The Energy Saving Trust estimates that insulating an average UK home makes a carbon saving of around 560kg a year. So it’s worth doing in so many ways.
The good news is that npower may be able to help you save energy and money. You could even qualify for free cavity wall insulation if you are in receipt of certain benefits. Or you could qualify for other home improvements from npower, such as a new boiler or loft insulation. You can also qualify if you live in a specified postcode (defined by the government) or have a house that is difficult to insulate and keep warm.
Plus, even if you don’t qualify for free improvements, the Green Deal gives you the opportunity to make energy saving improvements to your home without paying for the work up front. To register your interest and to find out more about these schemes, just visit http://www.npower.com/greennation.
***Check your eligibility here http://www.npower.com/greennation