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Roof and Ceiling Insulation
Why install ceiling insulation?
- Save up to 45% on heating and cooling
- Reduce your energy use and greenhouse gas emissions
- Rely less on heating and cooling systems
- Make your home more comfortable
Achieve the R-value you want
Installing ceiling insulation is a perfect DIY project providing you follow some basic instructions. Compressing the insulation or leaving gaps between batts will make it difficult to achieve the R-value you want.
There are various roof insulation types, and most are fairly similar, though there are some distinct differences between the brands. The roof insulation cost will typically be saved back in energy savings over just a few days. The average ceiling insulation bag is 1.2 metres long and weighs between 8 and 18kgs. Typically, manholes are not much bigger than the bag itself, so loading the bags into the ceiling is almost always a two-person job. If the manhole is actually not big enough for an unopened bag to fit through, you may have to split the bags open and pass the batts one by one into the ceiling, which is very time consuming. Or you can load the bags through the roof, which will only work if the roof is tiled and comes with its own challenges, not least that you will have to secure yourself against risk of falls.
Small Retrofit DIY Ceiling Installation
While in theory its possible for one person to retrofit a ceiling by themselves, it is definitely recommended to tackle it with the help of another person. Installing insulation roof batts in existing roof spaces is tough work, and it’s not just the installing that can be difficult. You must also plan how you are going to get your insulation bags into the ceiling. The installation process is really part of the ceiling insulation cost, and should be factored into the budgeting for the project. Check out out DIY page for more information on how to insulate a roof.
Why install roof insulation in your ceiling space?
We once conducted an experiment with roof insulation – installing Earthwool ceiling insulation in Sydney above a commercial office ceiling over all the ceiling tiles, but leaving one tile un-insulated. This was an office which typically got very hot in summer, thanks no doubt to the metal roof immediately above it, and the absence of any roof sarking. The effect of the roof insulation was immediately noticable in that the wall mounted split system air-conditioner which had earlier been installed some months earlier, was now comfortably able to cool the entire office without any trouble.
The most striking thing to notice though was how easy it was to identify which ceiling tile was the un-insulated one, simply by touching it with ones hands. While the insulation which had been installed was only a standard R3.0, the insulated tiles were cool to touch on a hot day, whereas the lone, un-insulated ceiling tile was very warm to touch. There is a world of difference between an insulated roof, and one which isn’t insulated.
Roof insulation makes an enormous difference to the indoor temperature control, and is the best investment you can make to ensure year round savings on your electricity bills. (This is possibly why roof insulation has been a big focus in the Warm Up New Zealand: Healthy Homes programme.) Never compress roofing insulation to make it fit into a cavity which is less than the recommended thickness of the insulation itself. This rule applies to all ceiling insulation types. Compressing roof insulation batts is counter productive, and will actually reduce the performance of the roof insulation materials. Rather install a thinner insulation roof batt with a lower R-Value, or consider installing Hi-Density thermal and acoustic batts in the areas where space is an issue.
Winter Heat Losses
The below diagram shows Winter heat losses in a home without insulation in roof, walls or floor. Between 25% and 35% of heat is lost through the ceiling, higher than any other area of the home. A further 15% to 25% of heat is lost through the walls, leading to high heating bills.
Image Source: www.yourhome.gov.au
Summer Heat Gains
The below diagram shows Summer heat gains in a home without insulation. Installing thermal insulation in the walls, ceilings and underfloor would help to keep the home cooler in hot weather and reduce the reliance on air-conditioning systems.
Image Source: www.yourhome.gov.au
Ceiling Insulation for Sydney, Melbourne and other Major Metros
Our Melbourne and Sydney warehouses are stocked to the roof with quality ceiling insulation. (Insulation is also available for New Zealand customers.) It’s hard to overstate the importance of ceiling insulation batts in any new building or renovation project. There is a direct link between properly installed insulation in the ceiling space, and the amount of energy required to heat or cool the building. As such, the ceiling insulation cost should not be considered an “expense”, but rather an energy saving investment for the home owner or tenants of the building. Thermal insulation types vary, but they all perform the same, fundamental purpose: restricting the sometimes extreme heat generated by and through the exposed roof surface (be it tiled or metal) from passing unrestricted down into the rooms below the ceiling. Brand new houses will almost without exception be required to install ceiling insulation from the very outset, in order to comply with minimal environmental energy savings standards. We will usually advise our customers to indeed view this as a minimum’, and to rather upgrade to at least a slightly higher R-Value than the ceiling insulation R-Rating specified on the energy report.