External solid wall insulation is a form of home insulation that is available to home owners and according to the latest Government report in March 2014, 8 million homes have solid walls but only 257,000 (3%) homes actually have solid wall insulation, therefore, the UK Government is trying to incentivise homeowners with solid walls to apply for external wall insulation. This article will hopefully explain everything you need to know about external solid wall insulation and the UK Government funding that is available.
What is external solid wall insulation?
Homes built before 1920 are likely to have solid walls instead of cavity walls. The insulation works by essentially wrapping the exterior of the house in a thermally resistant package. Professional external wall insulation will prevent up to 45% of your heat loss that occurred before the insulation.
Although the installation of external wall insulation is more expensive than cavity wall insulation the heating bill savings are considerably greater and if you are a homeowner that uses electricity or solid fuel to heat your home then you could benefit from insulation funding to cover the cost of the installation.
Benefits of external solid wall insulation
- Installation of the insulation doesn’t affect the inside of the property.
- Saves you money on your heating bills by reducing your home’s heat loss up to 45%.
- Adds a waterproofing layer to your home.
- Improves the sound resistance of your home by adding a soundproofing layer to your home.
- There are different render finishes available to match your home’s style.
- Makes your home more airtight because any poor rendering or cracks in the external walls will be covered up by the insulation.
- If you live on a terrace, it is possible to have all the properties done at one time all together.
- Internal and interstitial damp and condensation is prevented from within your property.
External insulation considerations
- There needs to be good access to all external walls and do not lead directly onto a pavement.
- External walls need to be made from solid brick, stone or concrete and structurally sound. If repairs are needed then they need to be done before the insulation is installed. If they cannot be repaired then external wall insulation is not suitable for your home.
- You may require planning permission to install the exterior insulation as it may not be permitted for listed buildings or properties in conservation areas.
- If there isn’t sufficient roof over-hang then your exterior wall needs to be sloped, weatherproofed and new guttering fitted to accommodate the insulation which can make the installation more costly.
- Your walls must be free from damp.
- You mustn’t have cavity walls because cavity wall insulation is cheaper to install and if you already have cavity wall insulation then external wall insulation will not prevent any more heat loss as there is insulation already in place.
External insulation funding
There are two main types of funding available through the Government’s ECO scheme and is open to everyone regardless of where they live and their personal financial circumstances:
- 100% funding for homes that use electricity or solid fuels for their main heating source. There must be NO gas supply at your property to qualify for 100% of the grant.
- 50% funding for homes that use gas, oil or LPG for their heating. You can access £4000 or 2/3 of the insulation cost depending on which one is the less.