Sunday, 4 October 2015

Detailing

To get the result you hoped for from installing energy efficiency and renewable energy measures, it is important to get the detailing right. Not doing so can result in losing a lot of energy from unexpected places, or the products and systems not working correctly. However, it can be very difficult to know how much all these details matter, indeed what the details should be, and how much effort to put in to persuade the builders to use particular products or do things in a particular way.

Supertape
We have made two detailing decisions recently. The first was about finding a special sealant for the junction where the waste pipe from the loft shower room goes through the side wall of the house and, importantly, through the Pavatex external wall insulation. The standard builder's solution would be to seal around the outside using silicone. However, we weren't sure if this would be good enough for the Pavatex. As it is a wood fibre insulation, it's obviously very important it doesn't get wet. So, I looked through various technical documents and web sites, found what seemed to be the recommended joint sealant (a tape called ISO BLOCO 600), found a UK supplier and ordered the tape. This took upwards of two hours, and a couple of days later some rather modest looking tape arrived in the post. Was it worth it? Let's hope so.


The other detailing decision required less time staring at a computer screen. My husband removed the row of floorboards closest to the outside wall in bedroom 1, and installed insulation adjacent to the external wall between the ground and first floors. We had some hemp batt insulation left over from insulating underneath the ground floor years ago, and used this, cutting it to size. It means there shouldn't be a cold section of wall between the ground floor (internally insulated to ceiling level) and the first floor (internally insulated to floor level). With a detail like this, we'll never see the effect in terms of energy bills, but it definitely seems worth doing.




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