What is Cavity Wall Insulation?
Modern houses are built using cavity walls with a gap between two layers of bricks, as opposed to a solid wall. The outer layer essentially acts as a protective barrier against rain and this is designed to reduce the risk of damp and mould. Meanwhile, the air in the space between the two layers adds an element of heat and sound insulation.
So far so good.
Except air isn’t the best of insulators so many cavity walls have synthetic insulation filling the gap between the two layers of brick. This became standard building regulations in the 1990s and houses build since then should have cavity wall insulation.
Installed correctly, cavity wall insulation can prevent 40% of household heat from escaping through the walls. This improves energy efficiency and reduces the amount of money you need to spend on your heating bills.
The problem is, millions of homes in the UK have had cavity wall insulation installed incorrectly over the past 15 years, costing some homeowners tens of thousands.
What are the potential problems of cavity wall insulation?
The whole point of cavity wall designs is to protect houses against heavy rain and the risk of damp. Sadly, poorly installed cavity wall insulation has caused millions of homes across the country to develop serious cases of damp and mould, causing damage to properties and putting the health of families at risk.
Most of the issues our customers experience come from properties having cavity wall insulation fitted after being built. This is known as “retrofitting” and properties should always be properly surveyed to ensure they’re suitable for having cavity wall insulation installed.
While cavity wall insulation is a perfectly valid method of improving the energy efficiency of homes, it’s not suitable for all property types and it must be installed correctly. Otherwise, the risk of damp developing in your home drastically increases.
Damp can cause serious structural damage to your home and even put your family’s health at risk. Never tolerate signs of damp in your house and do what you can to pinpoint the cause as soon as possible.
What are the signs of damp?
Not all damp is caused by poor cavity wall insulation but any sign of damp is something you should pay attention to. Here’s what you need to look out for:
- Condensation gathering on the inside of wall, doors or windows
- Pools of water gathering on windowsills
- Cold patches on the inside of external walls
- Mould growing anywhere inside your property, including furniture and furnishings
- Peeling wallpaper or paint
- Damp stains in your walls, ceilings or along skirting boards
- Rotting wood or furnishings at the base of your property
It’s important you put a stop to damp as soon as you notice any signs because it’s often too late to reverse the damage once it becomes visible. More importantly, mould growth can cause all kinds of health implications and this isn’t something you and your family should have to live with.
Likewise, you shouldn’t have to fit the bill if the damage caused to your property is the result of poorly fitted cavity wall insulation.