Insulation in a Northern Territory home should be designed and installed to suit the climate. If you do not have adequate insulation, you may find that heat escapes in the winter and your insulation retains too much heat in the summer.
Insulation products come in two main categories, bulk or reflective. Both have their merits. Reflective insulation reflects radiant heat. Bulk insulation can perform just as well when installed correctly. You can also purchase recycled insulation if you prefer an eco-friendlier home.
R-value is the industry way of ensuring that insulation is fit for purpose. It is up to you or your builder to install the insulation in accordance with Australian Standard AS/NZS 4859. There are minimum standards within the code, so it is important to make sure insulation works.
If you purchase insulation with a high R-value you should expect to retain heat in winter and dispel heat in summer. Thermal performance is determined on the R-value of the insulating material, which is why a lot of builders recommend exceeding the recommended value.
Installation methods are important when it comes to insulation. Compressing bulk insulation can significantly reduce its performance. The R-value of insulation is compromised by compressing the material. Always ensure that insulation fits the intended space and that performance is not impaired by a loss of thermal retention.
Air leaks due to poor insulation represent a significant loss of energy. In the summer, one of the major concerns for Northern Territory homes is heat seeping through insulation. A well-insulated home will keep heat in during the winter months and stop heat gathering inside during the summer.
To avoid insulation leaks, make sure that the material is overlapping or sealed. The benefits of a well-insulated home include better protection from pollen, dissipation of heat, elimination of condensation, and pest reduction.
The design of your home is also a consideration when it comes to insulation. If your home is not adequately shaded or the cavity walls do not facilitate insulation, you are leaving yourself open to an uncomfortable summer. Eaves on the sides of your home that receive the most sun act as insulation against the heat.
Your roof space takes in the most heat as it is in the direct path of the sun. Insulating your roof will prevent heat retention and the buildup of condensation. Reflection insulation in your roof will also prevent heat from penetrating your home.
Smart insulation is about choosing the right type of insulation for your home. Consult with a number of suppliers to find out which insulation plan is best for your property. The R-value, placement and type of insulation you choose will make all the difference when the summer months come around.
The orientation of your home will also play a pivotal role in how much heat is absorbed. In hot humid climates and hot dry climates with no winter heating requirements, it is important to use other structures to provide additional insulation. Aim to exclude direct sun by using trees and adjoining buildings to shade every façade year round while capturing and funneling cooling breezes.
When you are building or purchasing a home it is vital that you consider insulation. You can make considerable savings on energy when a house is well insulated.
For professional building inspections, carried out by a licensed builder, call Houspect for a consultation.