Accept no compromise in building performance

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Form should never compromise function, particularly in respect of building design. Aesthetics are important but must not usurp the need to create homes that optimise occupant safety and comfort. Prioritising the performance of materials such as insulation are integral to this outcome. For architects, early engagement with a specialist insulation manufacturer can ensure design intentions and building regulation requirements are realised.

A design philosophy based on material selection reduces the risk of falling short of legislative requirements. In terms of determining a building’s thermal efficiency, U-value calculations are pivotal to deciphering the heat retention of walls, floors and roofs. In these areas, specifying insulation based on its thermal performance is the obvious solution. However, other considerations may be required to achieve compliance. An insulation board’s fire safety performance, compressive strength and moisture resistance must also form part of the conversation when it comes to selecting a product that is fit for design purposes. Building stakeholders having this conversation at a project’s earliest stage can ensure material requirements are accommodated prior to construction work commencing, saving time and cost.

All-round Benefits of Eurowall® +

With Eurowall® +, Recticel has produced an insulation panel that achieves regulation targets for walls whilst simplifying the installation process for bricklayers. A 90mm Eurowall®+ PIR board can help to achieve 0.18 U-value in a traditional 100mm cavity, with the 10mm air gap facilitating its easier installation. Featuring an innovative tongue-and-groove joint on its four sides, Eurowall®+ negates the need to change working practices to achieve a better-performing cavity wall.

Insulation innovation key to achieving increasingly stringent energy targets

The tightening of building energy targets via the Part L 2003 update and the Future Homes Standard’s imminent introduction, has advanced the need for insulation products that help fulfil design possibilities whilst satisfying regulation compliance. A good example of this is Deck-VQ®, Recticel’s ultra-thin vacuum insulation panel (VIP). With terraces gaining prevalence, particularly in urban building developments with limited living space, Deck-VQ® maximises comfort and protection where insulation build-up thickness is an issue.

Ideal for a wide range of flat-roof and terrace applications, Deck-VQ® belies its slender form to deliver a thermal performance as low as 0.008W/mK whilst its VIP core provides a Lambda value of 0.006 W/mK. Thanks to its innovative composition, complex refurbishment projects can be completed with Deck-VQ® without costly, time-inefficient structural changes. This outcome enhances a project’s sustainable credentials by reducing its environmental impacts.

Based on practicality and performance, the aforementioned products have enhanced possibilities in terms of design and the construction process itself. Nothing must obscure the importance of accurate U-value assessments to obtaining the primary design objective, namely regulation-compliant buildings that contribute to the built environment’s future sustainability. But as innovation continues to evolve insulation’s form and function, there should be nothing to prevent buildings looking as good as they perform.

For a range of insulation best practice guidance including product specification, installation and accurate U-value calculations, Recticel’s RIBA-approved CPD has all bases covered to ensure you meet your project goals. Available on-demand, with video, face-to-face seminars also an option, click here to discover our inspirational CPD programme.

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