What is Thermal Bridging and why it matters

What is Thermal Bridging?

Thermal bridging appears within buildings when heat or cold bypasses the insulation. This usually happens where the insulation is penetrated by an objects, window or studwork. Heat for example moves across objects that are more conductive than the insulation around it. The conductive material is less resistant and creates an easy path for heat, called thermal bridging.

Why Thermal Bridging matters?

Thermal bridging is a major factor of energy loss within buildings, causing energy waste and increase cost.

Studs within a wall are a significant thermal bridge. Walls can include up to 25% worth of studs which basically could means that one quarter of a building is not insulated.

Thermal bridging is especially significant in well insulated buildings. Different studies carried out, have measured that thermal bridge heat loss generally represents around 30% of the primary energy consumption of a low-energy building. One manufacturer of mineral fibre insulation has shown point thermal bridges could represent even up to 50% of total energy consumption of a building.

What is a Point Thermal Bridge?

A Point Thermal Bridge happens where there is a point penetration of the insulation layer, such as fixings, beams, columns or other connection points.

Point penetrations need to be calculated three dimensionally (conforming to EN 10211 and BR 497) allowing the determination of the additional heat loss at the point thermal bridge measured by the point thermal transmittance.

How to stop Thermal Bridge?

To stop Thermal Bridge the studs or any object penetrating the insulation must be insulated themselves. With new buildings this can easily be achieve by using special insulation like IsoPads Strips for example. For existing buildings, a new outside insulation is recommended. Remodelling a building façade used to be an expensive and work intensive procedure involving removing part or all of the existing façade. Today ceramic insulation coating can make this task much faster and save huge amounts of cost and hassle.

By using ceramic insulation coat at your building, not only do you break the thermal bridge and by adding insulation under new siding, not only do you break the thermal bridge and improve energy efficiency, but you are also able to leave the interior of the home undisturbed and get an exterior makeover at the same time.

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