Cavity wall insulation

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Cavity wall insulation is used to reduce heat loss through a cavity wall by filling the air space with material that inhibits heat transfer. This immobilises the air within the cavity (air is still the actual insulator), preventing convection, and can substantially reduce space heating costs.

A wall that has had cavity wall insulation installed (after construction), with refilled holes highlighted with arrows.

During construction of new buildings, cavities are often filled with glass fibre wool or rock wool panels placed between the two leaves (sides) of the wall, but many other building insulation materials offer various advantages and many others are also widely used. For existing buildings that were not built with insulated cavities, a fibrous material such as cellulose insulation or glass wool is blown into the cavity through suitably drilled holes until it fills the entire wall space. Foam can also be used for this purpose. Although some foams used in the past, such as urea-formaldehyde, are no longer used (some people are allergic to this material, which is very difficult to remove once inside the wall), others, such as polyurethane, have taken their place.

Cavity wall insulation also helps to prevent convection and can keep a house warm by making sure that less heat is lost through walls; this can also thus be a more cost-efficient way of heating one's house.

In the United Kingdom, grants from the government and from energy companies are widely available to help with the cost of cavity wall insulation. The Affordable Warmth Objective (HHCRO) provides help for low income and vulnerable households to improve the energy efficiency of their properties and reduce heating bills.[1]

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