Sustainable insulation should not contain harmful chemicals. It should be made from natural or recycled materials and should itself be recyclable. By way of an example Sheep’s wool is an excellent and well-established natural insulation and Newspaper is an excellent and well-established recycled insulation. Below we set out a range of sustainable insulation products.
Sheep’s Wool insulation
Thermafleece is a well-known provider of a sheep’s wool insulation with some 20 years’ experience in the marketplace. Their products range from Thermafleece Cosywool to Thermafleece Ultrawool. Both also provide excellent acoustic insulation and particularly so Ultrawool. Sheeps wool insulation is also very easy to work with on site.
Recycled newsprint insulation
Thermafloc is a good example of recycled newsprint insulation. Newspaper can be used as insulation and as an example of cellulose insulation has many advantages. In cellulose insulation typically 85 % of the content is recycled newsprint. The recycled newsprint is shredded and turned into fibres. As such a significant advantage is that when applied it can fill small voids and be packed tightly into these spaces.
The manufacturers note that ‘Thermofloc recycled newspaper insulation is made from 100% organic cellulose. It is highly breathable. and works in sympathy with the building fabric to help create a healthy and comfortable indoor environment. Manufacturing Thermofloc requires very little processing energy helping make it a sustainable choice when it comes to building insulation’
Cork is considered to be one of the best natural insulators. It is durable but expensive, but it is a worthwhile investment as it is beneficial for the health of your family. There are no glues used in cork insulation process, as the cork granules’ natural substance called suberin, binds the granules to make boards. Boards of different thicknesses are available.
Cork board insulation has been used in Europe for some time now, but it has to find a market in America and other parts of the world. However, due to its rigidity, you may have to overlap the boards at the joints to prevent gaps, especially around windows and doors.
HEMSPAN® Bio Flex natural fibre hemp insulation is made with technical hemp fibres. Bio Flex has very low water vapour diffusion resistance and excellent thermal and acoustic properties. With its outstanding thermal performance and flexibility, it entirely replaces glass and mineral wool insulation. It is ideally suited for internal, thermal or acoustic insulation and perfect for sustainable construction.
Recycled Denim Insulation
The pair of jeans you sent for recycling may end up being used as insulation for your home. There are some companies, such as Bonded Logic, which have introduced some innovative products made out of 90% recycled denim with 10% cotton fibres to create unique insulation for homes.
As the material is recycled cotton, you can be assured that there won’t be any toxic gases leaking into your home. Denim insulation is easy to install – even your kids can help you install it! This type of eco-insulation is in tandem with your green lifestyle, and will enhance the comfort of your home.
A surplus insulation marketplace exists. Reclaimed, surplus and factory seconds can bought through a series of outlets. It is quite common to see products advertised on Gumtree or Facebook. ‘Second hand insulation near me’ would deliver a range of results. Local building sites may be running an onsite collection of surplus insulation.
Why use recycled insulation?
There are several reasons why using recycled insulation can be beneficial:
Environmental benefits: Recycling materials reduces the amount of waste sent to landfills and conserves natural resources. Using recycled insulation can help reduce the amount of virgin materials used for insulation production, which can help reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production of new insulation materials.
Energy efficiency: Insulation is a critical component in improving energy efficiency in buildings. Recycled insulation can provide the same level of thermal performance as traditional insulation materials, but with a smaller environmental impact.
Cost savings: Recycled insulation can be cost-effective, as it can often be obtained at a lower cost than new insulation materials. Additionally, recycled insulation can help reduce energy costs over time by improving a building’s energy efficiency.
What is recycled insulation?
Recycled insulation is insulation that is made from materials that have been previously used and would otherwise be considered waste. These materials are collected, processed, and re-purposed into insulation products. Recycled insulation can come from a variety of sources, including post-consumer waste, such as old newspapers or plastic bottles, or post-industrial waste, such as scrap metal or glass from manufacturing processes.
The materials are processed and treated to create insulation products that meet industry standards for performance and safety. This may involve breaking down the materials, cleaning and refining them, and adding chemicals or treatments to enhance their insulation properties.
Recycled insulation can be used in a variety of applications, such as for insulating walls, floors, and roofs in buildings, as well as in industrial settings. It can provide similar levels of thermal performance and energy efficiency as traditional insulation products made from virgin materials, but with a smaller environmental footprint.
Overall, recycled insulation is a sustainable and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional insulation products, as it reduces waste and conserves natural resources.