Your home is Australia’s independent guide to designing, building or renovating homes to ensure they are energy efficient, comfortable, affordable and adaptable for the future.
- Southern states such as Victoria require as much insulation as possible in the roof due to heat loss through the roof. Remember, hot air rises and disperses through any air leaks or holes within the roof.
- Thermal mass is also very important in colder climates where there is a reasonable difference between day and night temperatures.
- Thermal mass include typically heavyweight construction materials like concrete, brick and stone. Materials with low thermal mass are typically lightweight construction materials, like timber frames.
- Under slab and slab edge insulation with CSOG (concrete slab on ground) construction is critical as it isolates the temperature of the slab from the temperature on the ground.
Key take aways
- Insulation is a very important part of a home as it is a material that regulates the flow of heat in and out of the home.
- For a better quality experience within the home, you have to have a moderate fluctuation of temperature, so insulation allows you to create a more even temperature inside the home regardless of what’s happening outside of the home.
- Building materials such as brick, cladding or metal products that are used on the external fabric of the home all have an effect on the amount of insulation a home can have.
- Australia is fortunate to have a lot of different types of insulation products to select from making it easier to achieve air tightness within all types of buildings.
- R Value is the measure of the thermal efficiency of the building and building fabric. So generally speaking, the higher the R value, the better the performance, particularly for the external elements of the home.
- A lot of houses in Queensland were originally built with brick veneer external walls, which is virtually a skin of brick on the outside of the home with a lightweight structured plasterboard on the inside of the home. This type of construction isn’t typically suited to Queensland’s warmer climate. Why? During the day the external bricks are warmed by the sun and at night, that heat is radiated into the home making the environment uncomfortably warm, as opposed to cool.
- The sunny state is more suited to a lightweight cladding on the outside of the home (with adequate shading) that ensures the sun doesn’t permeate into the brick and hold its heat energy within the brick. This technique ensures that the brick mass within the home is kept cool for longer, during the day and night reducing the need for mechanical cooling devices.
- Insulation within the roof space and corners is important as a lot of air is lost within the roof (as hot air rises), and we Queenslanders want to stop solar radiation entering into the home, so the roof space is the first place we want to ensure there is adequate insulation.
- Walls of homes, particular western facing walls will benefit from insulation. Under floor insulation, especially those raised off the ground allowing ventilation to come into the home, can become particularly cold in the winter months therefore, subfloor insulation can also be beneficial in some Queensland homes.