Building a house is probably one of the biggest and most costly investments a person can make in his life.
There is a general tendency to underestimate the benefits of a good thermal insulation. In Cyprus especially where the weather temperatures can jump from extremely high to quite low, many suppose that Air Conditioners and Heaters alone can do the job of maintaining a good temperature in the house throughout the day. The truth is that without thermal insulation, air conditioners and heaters are highly inefficient and their use painfully expensive,
What is Thermal Insulation and why is it important?
A good thermal insulation can contribute significantly to the overall energy performance of a building . A building without insulation will demand a lot of energy to keep warm or cool, increasing the energy costs dramatically, while also having a negative environmental impact. Thermal insulation has the ability to trap the heat indoors during the winter, while in the summer it does not allow it in, keeping the inside of a building cool. There are several insulation materials used in the construction industry, such as Rock-wool, Fiberglass and Polystyrene. The amount and type of insulation will depend on several factors, such as the design of the building, the climate, the budget or even the preference of the Client or the construction Company.
What is the R-factor?
Usually when we compare insulation materials we pay attention to the R-factor. The higher the R-factor the better the insulation is. The R-factor stands for thermal resistance, which is the ability of the material to block heat. The R-factor depends on the rate the heat transfers through the material (thermal conductivity), as well as its thickness.
Common thermal insulation materials
Fiberglass – Fiberglass is one of the most used insulation materials at present times. It is non-flammable, very effective and very affordable. It’s R-factor value ranges from 2.9 to 3.8 p/inch. Due to the fact that it is made of tiny bits of glass, it is very important that during its installation, certain safety precautions are taken. After the fiberglass is sealed inside the walls there is absolutely no danger.
Rockwool – Rockwool is made of actual rocks and minerals. It is good, not only for its thermal resistance but also for the soundproofing abilities it has. Typically its R-factor value ranges from 2.8 to 3.5
Polystyrene – It is a thermoplastic material, great for thermal and sound insulation. There are two types of polystyrene, the expanded (EPS) and the extruded (XEPS). XEPS is more expensive and has an R-factor value of 5.5 while the EPS has an R-factor value of 4. It is a flammable material and so it needs to be coated with a fireproofing chemical called HBCD.
In case you have some questions concerning thermal insulation please do not hesitate to contact us. We will get back to you the soonest, with all the answers you need!