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Monthly Archives: November 2016

18 
Nov

Why Should You Insulate Your Floors?

When it comes to keeping your home nice and toasty there are a few things that we all already Loft Conversionknow are a good idea; insulating your roof, installing cavity wall insulation, fitting double glazed windows and doors, using an energy efficient boiler etc. But what about insulating your floors as well? Approximately 10% of a home’s heat can be lost through the floors – not only is this thoroughly annoying, but cold floors equal cold and feet and no one wants that, especially not the lovely Bolton builders at Wisecraft Ltd!

When considering a new extension or other building project, or you just want to keep your house warm whilst keeping your energy bills down, it can really pay to think about floor insulation as well as everything else!

Types of floor insulation

The type of floor insulation that you choose largely depends on the type of floor that you have:

  • Suspended floors – older houses often have wooden floors that are suspended on joists over a void. There are a number of options to insulate these types of floors; if you have a carpet over your suspended floor then you could add a layer of insulation above the boards but under the carpet. Alternatively it is possible to install underfloor insulation that is attached to the underside of the boards; this can be glass/mineral fibre or sheep’s wool insulation that is held up by netting or alternatively you can install Batts.
  • Solid concrete floors – these tend to be found in houses built since the 1930’s and floors are made up of a solid concrete slab. These can often have quite a good thermal mass but depending on the choice of floor covering can feel quite cold. The easiest way to insulate solid concrete floors is with a layer of solid insulation which is placed directly on top of the floor.
  • Insulated concrete floors – most modern houses now have solid concrete floors but with a layer of polystyrene insulation that a few inches under the floor’s surface to provide insulation. In some cases this may not require much further insulation, but you could also consider adding an extra layer of insulation on top of the concrete under your floor covering to really ensure that you stay warm and toasty.

What else to consider

When thinking about insulating your floors, especially if you have a traditional suspended floor, then it is important to consider leaving ample opportunity for ventilation, for example ensuring that air bricks are not blocked. If air is not allowed to circulate freely then your floor boards and joists could get damp and begin to rot. This can also apply to solid floors, ensure that air bricks above floor level are not blocked or air can be prevented from circulating through cavity walls etc.

For more information about insulating your floors, contact the friendly experts at Wisecraft Ltd Bolton.

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Published Date: 18th November 2016
Category: General


 

11 
Nov

How To Care For Your Brickwork

Brick has been one of the most popular choices for building for many centuries, even Henry Brick Wall ImageVIII’s Hampton Court Palace is made of gorgeous red bricks, and it is likely that you house is made from brick too. Brick is durable and built to last, but there are some things that can cause damage to your brick work which, if not caught early, can lead to more serious problems such as water ingress or even complete wall collapse. However there are a few simple things that you can do to care for and to maintain your brickwork.

Clean your brickwork

Once a year it is advisable to properly look over your brickwork and clean any areas that are showing obvious dirt. This can be a simple as hosing it down with the spray nozzle on your garden hose, or in some cases it may be necessary to mix one capful of bleach into a gallon of water before using a natural bristle brush to gently scrub off any areas of moss, mould or mildew (this can result from areas of brickwork that do not get much natural light and are close to overhanging vegetation). Ensure that you give the brick a good soaking before applying the bleach solution to avoid the brick absorbing the bleach.

Avoid water damage

Water can damage your brick from two sources. Firstly from rain beating against your brick eventually soaking into the mortar causing the mortar and/or brick to split or crack. Or as a result of rising damp, when the salt crystals left behind after the damp naturally evaporates cause damage to both the mortar and the brick. Once the brick is water damaged, freezing and thawing cycles can quickly cause further damage to the brick, so catching water damage early is essential.

Repointing

If the mortar of your bricks has been damaged it will be necessary to repoint it. This will give your brick work a new lease of life and leave it looking much neater too. When repointing it is essential that all damaged mortar is carefully removed before adding thin layers of new mortar to form a safe and waterproof seal, mortar should be replaced to a depth of at least twice the width of the joint. It is also important to ensure that the new mortar matches to colour and texture of your existing mortar.

To get a free assessment of your brickwork or to employ some of Bolton’s best builders to undertake any repointing or maintenance contact Wisecraft Ltd Bolton Builders today.

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Published Date: 11th November 2016
Category: General, Handy Tips


 

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