The hidden costs of 'cheap' insulation
New research has shown that by using premium performance phenolic insulation over cheaper, thicker mineral fibre insulation, developers can reduce construction thicknesses and actually save on total upfront costs.
The study from Currie & Brown, which was commissioned by Kingspan Insulation, assesses the impact of cavity wall insulation thicknesses on the development cost of three house types: large detached; small detached; and mid–terraced. Two brick wall specifications were modelled with differing cavity insulation specifications designed to achieve a U-value of 0.16 W/m2.K. The first wall specification featured a 100 mm cavity within the external walls utilising 90 mm of premium performance Kingspan Kooltherm K106 Cavity Board. This was compared with a wall comprising a 180 mm cavity fully filled with mineral fibre insulation.
The analysis, carried out by an experienced quantity surveyor, considered several variables including the cost of the insulation materials, length of wall ties, area of roof and wall layers and the foundation width. The results showed that by using the Kingspan Kooltherm K106 Cavity Board specification, overall construction costs were reduced by £161 and £420 in the large and small detached houses respectively.
In addition to potential overall cost benefits, proven by the study, Kingspan Kooltherm K106 can assist in keeping window reveal depths to a minimum to allow more natural light into buildings. Surveys have shown this is one of the key features people consider when buying a new home (1) and should have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of occupants.
Full details on the research can be viewed in Kingspan Insulation’s Avoidable Costs white paper. To download the document, visit: https://www.kingspan.com/gb/en-gb/products/insulation/kingspan-insight/avoidable-costs