How Does Insulation Help Save On Energy Bills?
With energy prices rising across the UK, many households are looking for ways to save on their energy bills.
If you want to reduce your carbon emissions and lower your energy bills, installing insulation or draught-proofing can reduce heat loss and make your home more energy efficient. Read on to find out how much could you be saving and the different ways can you insulate your home.
How Insulation Works
Essentially, insulation works by trapping air within the insulation material itself. This restricts the movement of air and slows the transfer of heat. Fitting insulation in your home slows this transfer of heat as much as possible, to prevent warm air from escaping and keep heat inside your home.
Heat is conducted in three ways – conduction, convection and radiation. It is impossible to stop heat loss completely, but insulation is designed to be a very poor conductor of heat in all three ways, meaning it can reduce heat loss from your home by slowing down these processes considerably.
How Much Could a Household Save?
Without proper insulation, heat escapes from your home in a myriad of ways, including through the doors, windows, floors and walls and the roof.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, the average household could save between £230 and £580 per year just by installing adequate roof and loft insulation. The amount you could save will depend on the type of home you live in (a semi-detached or a detached home will see bigger savings than a mid-terrace, for example) and the type of insulation you choose.
Some types of insulation, such as internal and external wall insulation have greater upfront costs to take into account than other insulation types, such as roof insulation or cavity wall insulation.
Ways You Can Insulate Your Home
There are four main types of home insulation.
Roof and loft insulation
Almost a quarter of the heat in our homes is lost through the roof. Roof or lost insulation can drastically reduce this, saving you money on your household energy bills and reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, which are contributing to climate change. Roof or loft insulation is one of the easiest types of insulation to install, with a relatively low upfront cost so you can begin making savings right away.
Floor insulation fills the gaps between your skirting boards and the floor. Less heat is lost from our homes this way, but as it’s relatively inexpensive compared to some other types of insulation (such as wall insulation, for example) it’s still an effective way to reduce heat loss from your home and save on your energy bills.
Cavity wall insulation
Most homes in the UK built after the 1920s have cavity walls. This is where there is a small gap between your home’s internal and external walls. Cavity wall insulation can go into this gap, helping to prevent heat loss. Cavity wall insulation isn’t cheap, however as the average house loses a significant portion of its energy through the walls, it’s still worth doing if you’re looking to reduce your long-term heating costs.
Solid wall insulation
If your home is older, then it’s likely to have solid external walls rather than cavity walls. This means there is no gap to be filled with cavity wall insulation. It also means your home will lose heat quicker than a newer property with cavity walls would.
Solid wall insulation adds an additional layer to the external surface of the wall; however, this is a more difficult and expensive process than cavity wall insulation with a greater upfront cost. This means it will take longer to see savings; however, it can still reduce your energy bills – and consequently your CO2 emissions – in the long term.