Some 35% of the heat which your home loses escapes through the walls. This is the reason why most people prefer to insulate them first. Once you have made this decision, you have to focus on the options which you have. The main ones are cavity and solid wall insulation. Find out how the two compare.
Cavity wall insulation involves filling the gap between the inner and outer wall of a house with a material which has high R-value. Typically mineral wool is used, but homeowners have other options which include foam, beads and granules. The material has to be installed by a professional. Small holes are drilled on the wall at a distance of around 1 metre. Then the installer uses special equipment to blow in the material.
The other option involves solid panels installed on the exterior walls of the house. The panels are made from a material with high R-value. These panels require professional installation as well. It is best for the panels to be installed when external refurbishment work is done. This can help for bringing the cost down.
The main factor for selecting a particular type of wall insulation is the structure of your house. If your house has walls consisting of two layers with a gap in between them, then this gap can be filled with the material which provides for energy efficiency. If your home has a solid wall with no cavity, then you will have no choice but to go for the installation of panels.
Benefits and Drawbacks
Both cavity and solid wall insulation do their job quite well. While the thickness of the cavity filling is strictly limited, you can select the thickness of the solid panels so that you can get even more effective heat loss reduction. With thicker panels, you will enjoy even better energy efficiency and improved sound insulation as well.
The cost of cavity filling is lower compared to that of installing solid panels. This is primarily due to the simpler and faster installation method. Besides, in order to get panels installed, you will most likely need a planning permission from the local authority. The panels do protect the walls from the elements, but since they are exposed to the weather conditions they become at higher risk of damage. At the same time, the savings which you will generate with the installation of external panels are nearly two times greater than those which you will get with the filling of the wall gap.
You should weigh the pros and cons of the two options carefully to make a final decision regarding wall insulation.