If you live in an older property, you may be able to relate to what follows. Many older properties are less well insulated than newer built ones, and won’t comply with minimum standards that are set out in building control regulations.
You can do a lot to improve the thermal efficiency of your home nowadays, and there may be grants available.
So how do you know you need more insulation?
#1. High Energy Bills
This is probably going to be pretty obvious, especially if you’ve noticed you’re having to have the heating on a lot more than perhaps a previous home. Or perhaps you moved in during the summer months and once it hits winter-time you find unexpected nasty surprises.
Draughty leaking windows and doors likely indicate the need for replacement, especially if they are only single glazed. Obviously this is a potentially large cost at the outset, so temporary measures could include adding an inner layer of plastic, adding strips of rubber around door frames, using thick curtains, and door draught excluders.
#3. Uneven temperatures in different rooms
If you walk around the home and one room feels significantly warmer than another, this could be a sign your home needs re-insulating. For example rooms facing the outside, or rooms at the top of the house could suggest the walls or roof have inadequate insulation.
#4. Large variation in Internal Temperature
Is your house too hot in summer and too cold in winter? If so, it is a sure sign the insulation is inadequate. Insulation shouldn’t just help keep your home warm, it helps to keep the house a consistent temperature all year round.
#5. Cold Walls/floors
#6. If your exterior facing walls feel cold to touch, they could need insulating. Houses built after the 1920’s usually have cavities in which insulation can be placed, whereas older solid brick walls may need external insulation.
#7. Ice build ups
Problems with ice may include ‘ice dams’, where snow melting on the roof runs into gutters, freezes again and causes a ‘dam’ in the gutter, and large icicles, which can limit the homes ability to deal with water run-off when the weather warms again. Well insulated houses can be seen with the layer of snow sat on the roof for longer as there is less heat escaping from it.
You may also experience frozen pipes if they are badly insulated, either internal or externally, and well, if you see ice on your inner windows, it’s a no-brainer that something needs to be done.
#8. Animal invasions
Our little furry and feathered friends may be indicators that our home is not thermally efficient! Pigeons, for example, like to sit on poorly insulated roofs because more heat escapes them and therefore they stay cosier.
Mice and bug-life may take up residence in your poorly insulated home through cracks and holes, so may be a sign that all is not well.
So there’s 8 signs that your home may not be well insulated, but all is not lost. There are some budget friendly things you can do to ensure your home stays warm (and not too hot) all year round.
Some of the main areas you can add insulation are:
- In the loft
- Exterior walls (solid wall or cavity wall insulation)
- Foundation walls above ground level
- Floors and joists
- Internal walls
- Doors and glazing
Do your research and check whether there are any grants available to help you, then watch those energy bills start to decrease after the end result.