Insulating the walls of your home is an effective and practical way of reducing expensive and wasteful heat loss. Treatment with cavity wall insulation is an established remedial action and many homes have benefited from this relatively simple and reliable upgrade. However, almost 40% of all properties in the UK, many of which were built in the 50’s and 60’s, were constructed with solid brick or stone walls that have no cavity or void with which to fill with insulating material. Known as ‘hard-to-treat’ homes, such properties can now benefit from thermal upgrade with the application of External Wall Insulation (EWI). This system offers the most effective procedure for improving the thermal performance of a solid wall property and is expected to be one of the most widely ECO (Energy Company Obligation) funded insulation measures of the Green Deal.
External Wall Insulation from specialist manufacturer Saint-Gobain Weber, the only system manufacturer and supplier to offer over 35 years of experience in the UK and across Europe, is an established and award-winning system supplier. It provides industry-recognised certification and has been specified for large renovation projects by many major property owners for the improvement and upgrade of the country’s housing stock.
Delivering significant long term savings on your energy bills, the addition of External Wall Insulation to an average 3-bedroom semi-detached property is estimated to cut annual heating bills by up to £500 according to the Energy Saving Trust. Equally, reducing your energy bills means reducing your carbon emissions too, so you’re helping the environment whilst saving yourself money.
“Nearly half of all heat lost from an un-insulated solid wall home is lost through the walls,” says James Mead, marketing manager, Saint-Gobain Weber, “which is wasteful and expensive. Our External Wall Insulation systems make homes warmer and more comfortable, improving both the thermal efficiency and weather resistance of the walls. As the insulation is applied to the exterior walls of the property it also transforms the appearance and value of your home, makes no impression on internal living space and minimises disruption to the household during installation. As Sarah Beeny, property developer, makeover guru and presenter, said on her TV programme: ‘It’s like putting a new overcoat on your home’. It feels good and looks good.”
weber.therm EWI is a layered system with insulation fixed to the outside of the walls, followed with a layer of mineral render which carries a mesh cloth reinforcement, and a rendered decorative finish to form a robust, low maintenance, weatherproof exterior. A variety of finishes can be applied, in different colours and textures, and even a natural brick finish is available to ensure properties remain in-keeping with the style of the neighbourhood.
The average cost of installing EWI (to a 3-bedroom semi) is around £6,000 - £7,500, however, the Government’s Green Deal initiative, the new financial mechanism that will benefit millions of homeowners and businesses, will eliminate the need for the householder or tenant to pay upfront for this improvement. Instead, the cost of this upgrade will be recovered via instalments made through the savings made on your energy bills over an agreed period of time.
Green Deal measures must meet the ‘Golden Rule’, that is, the savings on energy bills must be greater than the instalments paid back through the energy bill. If the cost of installing EWI does not meet the ‘Golden Rule’, significant ECO funding is available to reduce the size of the Green Deal loan so ensuring it meets the ‘Golden Rule’ criteria.
Due to its effectiveness at reducing heat loss and the practicality of its application, EWI will be funded through ECO with £1.3 billion of subsidies and grants available to encourage energy efficiency in homes. Funding becomes available from 28th January 2013 and Green Deal Provider companies are offering advisory assessments on properties now.
For more information about Energy Saving Trust-recommended Saint-Gobain Weber EWI systems, and a register of recommended installers throughout the UK and Ireland, visit www.weberwarmhome.com