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Why Home Insulation is Necessary
January 9, 2018
We have all experienced it. Lying in our bed, wrapped up in blankets, thick socks and with a heater by our side to try and beat a Winter's cold night or with our fan’s or air conditioners blasting cold air to cool us down on a hot Summer’s day. The climate in South Africa can reach both extremes and this is why Blue Rock Village find it necessary to use European techniques in their homes to create a comfortable temperature that will also save on all that energy usage (almost eliminate the need to use heaters or air conditioners that eat up electricity). Studies have shown that more than 44% of energy used by a normal household is exhausted through heating and cooling. Insulating your home saves energy and reduces your electricity spend on air conditioning by almost 100%.
Insulation works by counteracting the airs natural tendency to move from warm areas towards colder areas. This means that during the Winter months, insulation prevents cold air from coming into your home through the ceilings or walls and, in Summer, insulation works to keep the heat out and cool air inside. In short, insulation stabilizes the core temperature in your home so you won’t need to turn your heater up to the maximum setting in Winter or crank the air conditioner to icy cold in Summer.
Most importantly, what makes a good insulator is its poor heat conductivity. A particular insulation material’s lack of capacity to conduct heat – in other words, its thermal resistance – is measured by its R-value. The higher its R-value, the more blocking capacity or insulation it provides and the more energy and money you will potentially save. For example, insulation with a R2.6 rating will be more effective than insulation with a R1.6 rating.
It is the tiny air particles trapped in the insulating material that impart its thermal resistance properties. And it stands to reason that different materials have different heat blocking capabilities, therefore different R-values. The R-value is determined by the type of insulation material used, including its density and thickness, as well as how well and where in your home it’s installed. Since R-values are cumulative, the total R-value for your home is the sum of the R-values of the various insulation installed.
All homes in Blue Rock Village will be fully insulated and the indoor climate will be managed through both wall and roof insulation and an underfloor water heating and cooling system to keep the internal temperature at regular and comfortable 22 degrees.
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