Insulating Our Houses

Quite a few of the households on Kakariki Street have been prompted to either get new insulation put in or top up existing stuff. Here’s one of their stories…

It was a cold misty morning when I awoke to find the Sustainability Trust’s truck parked up outside our house with its occupants waiting for a seemly hour to come knocking on the door. This was the long awaited day when we would get fluffed top and bottom!

Compressed polyester biscuits (R1.4) under the floor boards and big juicy polyester blankets (R3.2) in the ceiling. Initially the install guys were a bit put out that we were not getting the black pvc moisture barrier to put on top of the soil under the house as it was a bit damp down below. They would have liked to have been lying on it whilst insulating between the joists. We explained about having had a guts full of mouldy houses in the past and being concerned about what insidious black mould colonies may get started underneath the similarly coloured plastic.

Here's just some of the fluffy that went in to our ceiling cavity. The end result has been amazing! We are now so much warmer with so little effort.

We had decided to go with another company’s product that is stapled up against the floor joists, there by allowing the air flow to dry the ground. Eventually after a few mumblings about mould not getting through pvc the youngest member piped up with “Come on then, one way or another we’ve got to get down there.”. And so they did, doing a good thorough job of it too.

The same can be said of the ceiling, which also held some other concerns for us. These were to do with draughts managing to move underneath the big blankets especially from any gaps at the edge of the roof as there were no biscuits going firmly between the joists. We were relieved when the guys told us that they would be ripping up some of the blankets into smaller pieces to wedge in between the joists around the perimeter of the ceiling – “standard practice you know”!..

The grand roll out begun including laying extra blocks of insulation between the joists right around the perimeter of the roof.

Well by mid afternoon the job was finished and we were left to our semi rural peace and quiet. But today it was different, the hollow boom of our footsteps on the floor boards have disappeared and the tympanic like resonances of the ceiling that would subtley colour our every sound had dried up! No more living inside a bass drum! I was in heaven – and apparently it will be warmer as an added bonus to boot!

Looking as gorgeous and serene as a fresh drift of snow, we thought it was Christmas!

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