With clear government sustainability targets on the horizon, the construction industry is having to adjust to meet new greener standards. This means it’s more important than ever that you keep up to date with the latest legislations and regulations that are being put in place, to make sure your build hits the mark. Installing good quality insulation is a great place to start, so we chatted to Actis Insulation to find out how their products can help make sure your projects comply with new regs.
The Future Homes Standard: Part L
One of the big shifts we’ll see in the industry will come with the government’s changes to Part L of the building regulations which are expected to come into force in mid 2022. These changes will mean all new-builds will have to comply with strict targets to reduce carbon emissions by 31% through a combination of fabric and new technologies. These changes pave the way for the more stringent Future Homes Standard, which should be in place in 2025.
This increased focus on fabric-led construction also means that the government will be tightening its stance on the Fabric Energy Efficiency (FEE) rating. In short, this means that all new-builds will need to be really energy efficient, with energy waste kept to a minimum.
How the correct insulation can help
One of the most common and familiar ways of making homes more energy efficient is by installing or updating loft insulation. With up to 40% of a home’s heat being lost through the roof, loft insulation is a great way of minimising energy waste and lowering your customer’s carbon footprint. Of course, minimising energy waste also brings with it some savings. Your customers will be glad to hear that they could save up to £200 a year on their energy bills with efficient loft insulation, so it’s a great way to save the pennies, too.
You might have a go-to option you’ve been using for a while when it comes to loft insulation, but there’s plenty of choice out there. The Hybris insulation from Actis is a great solution, as it’s achieved LABC Assured status thanks to its high performance and energy efficiency.
Go for the LABC or LABSS standard
Local authorities have the final say when it comes to the development or renovation of buildings, so it’s important that the products used in the build are endorsed by these bodies to make passing approvals easier. They contribute to government efficiency initiatives, such as Part L of the building regulations and Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES), by ensuring that these standards are met.
As well as being LABC Assured, the Actis Hybrid range has achieved the Scottish Equivalent, LABSS registered details, meaning it will be accepted by every local authority across England, Wales and Scotland. This certification extends to all four products, – honeycomb insulation Hybris, vapour control layer HControl Hybrid, and breather membranes Boost’R Hybrid and Boost R Hybrid Roof.
More importantly, given the fact that Scottish building regulations are known to be stricter than the guidelines in England, this endorsement really proves the efficiency and reputation of Actis products.
Follow the RCDs
The LABC’s Registered Construction Details (RCDs) offer good practice guidelines for installers to work towards and help ensure their projects meet the necessary regulations. RCDs provide a checklist of points for builders to look out for during the project design and construction. They also offer instant access to online tutorials for some additional support.
When it comes to creating more energy efficient spaces, there’s a new set of RCDs for just that. They were created in collaboration with Actis, and aim to help builders achieve as-built performance with a particular focus on reducing heat leakage via weak junctions – a problem that Actis products can help solve.
One issue you’ll find with insulation is that thermal bridging can occur when there’s an uninsulated gap, often at a junction, where heat can leak. Actis Hybrid products, on the other hand, can squeeze into gaps and bend around corners, meaning that thermal bridging can be eliminated, creating a much more efficient thermal solution.
Another potential problem is that some insulation products can settle over time, which also reduces thermal efficiency. Hybris Insulation, on the other hand, is highly durable thanks to its revolutionary honeycomb structure. This structure means that it retains its shape and will stay efficient for much longer without settling. This also means that it has a very low U-value, meaning it doesn’t let out much heat. With U-value being a key contributor to a product’s FEE rating, this is something that will make sure a build meets efficiency ratings.
Of course, a long-lasting product also helps to improve your reputation and build your relationships with customers. If something is good for one customer, they’re likely to tell their friends and family about it, meaning potentially more work for you in the long run!
A few added bonuses
Regulations aside, the Hybris Insulation is a great option for trades, as it’s been designed to make installation as straightforward as possible. You can easily cut the product with a saw, then you’re ready to install. It’s also clean to use, as it doesn’t create dust or fibres when cutting or installing – so you won’t have much tidying up to do after either! This easy process means that you can save up to 50% on labour, saving you time, and your customers money.