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Insulating a Terraced House vs a Detached House

In today’s era of climate consciousness, homeowners everywhere are becoming increasingly focused on energy efficiency. Insulation plays a crucial role in this. Not only does it reduce our energy consumption, thereby decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, but it also makes our homes more comfortable and reduces energy costs. But not all homes are built the same. As such, the insulation strategy that works best for each home can differ significantly. Today, we’ll focus on the contrasting methods for insulating terraced houses and detached houses.

Terraced houses

Terraced houses, also known as row houses or townhouses, are properties where each house shares at least one wall with the next. Their compact design naturally provides a certain level of energy efficiency because the shared walls help reduce heat loss, creating an inherent insulative benefit. However, additional insulation measures can take that efficiency even further.

Roof Insulation – Heat naturally rises, so the roof is one of the main places where homes lose heat, especially in houses with a loft or attic space. Insulating this area with materials like blanket insulation (rolls of mineral wool or glass fibre), loose-fill insulation (using lightweight materials like cellulose, glass or mineral wool), or spray foam insulation can significantly decrease this heat loss.

Exterior Wall Insulation – The front and rear walls of terraced houses are typically exposed to the outside elements, unlike the side walls. Hence, these walls may need additional insulation. External solid wall insulation is one option, which involves fixing a layer of insulation material to the wall and then covering it with a special type of render (plasterwork) or cladding.

Window and Door Insulation – Draught-proofing measures are a must for any home. By sealing up gaps around windows and doors using a variety of draught exclusion techniques (like brushes, seals or strips), you can keep the warm air in and the cold air out more effectively.

Detached houses

Unlike terraced houses, detached houses do not share walls with neighbouring properties. These standalone structures are surrounded by outdoor space, which exposes more area to heat loss. As such, their insulation needs can be a bit more demanding.

Roof and Loft Insulation – Just like terraced houses, detached houses often lose a significant amount of heat through the roof. Therefore, proper insulation in the attic or loft space is a must.

Wall Insulation – Detached houses usually have more external walls than terraced houses, all of which are susceptible to heat loss. Both cavity wall insulation (for houses with cavity walls) and solid wall insulation (for houses with solid walls) can be employed, depending on the type of walls your house has.

Floor Insulation – Heat loss through the floor can be a significant issue, especially in older homes. Insulating your floor, either by installing insulating material under the floorboards or by laying an insulating material and then a screed on top of concrete floors, can be a great way to increase your home’s energy efficiency.

Window and Door Insulation – It’s equally important in detached houses to implement draught-proofing around windows and doors. In addition to sealing gaps, consider double or even triple glazing to reduce heat loss through the windows.

Insulating your home, be it a terraced house or a detached one, can have a significant impact on your energy bills and your home’s carbon footprint. This process can be complex and requires an understanding of your home’s unique needs and architecture. Consider getting a professional home energy audit to identify the areas of your home that can benefit the most from insulation. Remember, every step taken towards a more energy-efficient home is a step towards a healthier planet.

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