External Solid Wall Insulation, Barking – East London

When we first visited this 1930’s semi-detached, it looked tired and rundown. The first floor render was chipped and in need of serious repair, while the brickwork on the ground floor was being weathered and in a poor state.

From a energy point of view, the property was losing heat rapidly through each of the three walls meaning bills were high and comfort was low. The old solid walls had a U-Value of around 2.7W/m2k, so the customer frequently complained about being cold and damp. However, our installation of external solid wall insulation brought about a new U-Value of 0.27W/m2k, which is better than current building regulations.

What External Solid Wall Insulation system was used?

We decided to insulate the property with 100mm of EPS – expanded polystyrene – insulation with a Silicon Silicate render. This completes a breathable system with incredible results. This external solid wall insulation system transforms the U-Value of the walls from 2.7W/m2k down to just 0.27W/m2k – for all who don’t know about U-Values and the what they mean, it simply means that the property is now more insulated than a brand new house built with cavity walls. The Silicon Silicate render provides a fantastic finish, makes the property look new again and has many of other advantages including the following:

The job took just under two weeks to carry out this external solid wall insulation, with all pipework and fixings extended to maintain the thickness of insulation across the property and minimise thermal bridging. We ensured that waste pipes were only out of action for a 24 hour period to minimise the inconvenience on the household.

    External Solid Wall Insulation, Tooting – South West London

This solid wall insulation job involved insulating a 1895 Victorian property with 100mm of insulation. We see 100’s of these properties every month and they all tend to be the same – cold and draughty!

The issue with these properties is that the solid wall construction does nothing to slow heat loss out of the property. By insulating some or all of the walls, you slow the movement of heat out of the house which means the heating system needs to work less hard to keep the house warm.

In this property in South West London, we wanted to insulate as much of it as possible without changing the appearance at the front of the house. It was for these reason that we decided to only insulate the back and sides of the house, leaving the front completely untouched to keep it in keeping with the rest of the street. Obviously in an ideal world from an energy saving point of view, we would insulate the whole of the property, however for this type of property we appreciate the aesthetic beauty of the brick itself and often it tends to be hard to get the relevant permissions from the local councils because  of the change in appearance. In this case it was deemed this was the best solution!

What Solid Wall Insulation system was used?

We opted to insulate the home with 100mm of EPS insulation with a mineral render and finished with a Silicon Silicate paint. This solid wall insulation system takes the u-value of the walls from 2.1W/m2k down to just 0.27W/m2k – now for most of us who don’t take in ‘u-value speak’ that is better than a brand new insulated cavity wall built today to conform with building regulations. The mineral render and Silicon Silicate paint provide a fantastic finish and have a raft of other advantages including the following:

The great thing about the solid wall insulation being applied to the outside of the brick is that this becomes a heat store, so will continue to release heat back into the room well after the heating has been turned off.

The job took just two weeks to carry out, with all the pipework extended to ensure a consistent thickness of insulation across all the walls. We ensured that waste pipes were only out of action for a 24 hour period to minimise the inconvenience on the household.


    Infrared Heating Panels Home Office – Watford, Hertfordshire

Infrared heating panel – background to the challenge

With ever rising home working in the UK, demands for home office space is increasing – this is why the Muspratts wanted to convert their garden room into a fully functioning office. Initially the room was retrofitted with insulation, in the roof space, walls and floors to bring the heat demand of the property down. Insulation should always be the first step for homes and businesses before heating systems are looked at. Insulation reduces draughts and increases the heat retention of the property.

Having completely refurbished the garden room, the Muspratts came to TheGreenAge to talk a little bit more about infrared heating. Initially infrared heating appealed very much because  it is easy to install, it can be installed on the ceilings, therefore blending unnoticed in the environment and the heat is drying and low cost to run.

The infrared heating panel solution

Having shared the floor plans of the property, the team helped the Muspratts size the panels appropriately so as not to be disappointed in the heating output. It is very important to size them correctly, because if you go too low then the heating output will not be adequate enough and you may be disappointed. The solution in this case was sized to accommodate heating  of 50 watts per m2, which is fine because the property is well insulated. If you have uninsulated solid walls or unfilled cavities, then you many need to accommodate 100 – 150 watts per m2.

The Muspratts went for three 850watt carbon fibre panels to heat an area of approximately 40m2. Although they were slightly oversized, it is not a bad thing because the room would get to target temperature much quicker and therefore reduce the frequent thirst for electricity to power it.

Installation of the heaters

The heaters themselves were installed as part of the general retrofit of the property. This is a good thing because it further makes the installation process easier to administer, as this can allow for a nice and tidy wiring job with minimal trunken. The panels were wired to a wireless thermostat to allow the Muspratts maximum temperature and time control.

>>> Learn more about the benefits of infrared heating in the home <<<

    Infrared Heating – Sutton, Surrey

During the summer months, Mr Anderson decided that enough was enough and it was time to replace their old storage heaters. Instead of directly replacing them with new storage heaters they wanted to consider other heating solutions that might be available to them considering they didn’t have access to mains gas.

What about the property?

The flat itself was ground floor with 2 bedrooms and built in the 1970’s – with cavity walls that have since been insulated by injecting them. The heat demand of the property therefore is not nearly as big as an equivalent solid wall property and since the house was ‘mid-terrace’ there is very little heat loss with their neighbours and likewise through the ceiling because there is another flat above, however the heat demand is far higher than a house built today to building regulations.

Since the house didn’t have access to mains gas, a new central heating system was not possible, therefore efficient heating options were limited – in our opinion there were 3 options, an air source heat pump (which would of allowed them access to the Renewable Heat incentive), infrared heating or fan assisted storage heaters.

Why install Infrared in the home?

Mr Anderson was extremely keen to go down the infrared heating route for a number of reasons – firstly the panels are thin and therefore don’t steal space in a room (they stick out just over 2.5cm from the wall once installed), secondly the warmth they can produce can be felt far quicker than traditional heating systems and therefore are more cost effective since the heating doesn’t need to be on as long. Lastly the panels look rather slick compared to other types of heating system.

How did he go about the change to Infrared?

We received the floor plan through from Mr Anderson so we could accurately size the panels based on his specific requirements. We recommended 4 panels, one for each bedroom, one for the lounge and a final one in the corridor, each with their own thermostat (to create heating zones in the home).

In addition to supplying the panels, we were also able to get one of our approved electrician partners to carry out the install in the home, which took just 1 day. His new infrared heating system cost just over £1000 and he now has a cost effective way to heat his home as and when he needs it, with the added benefit of being maintenance free unlike a wet central heating system. He also has the piece of mind that our select range of infrared heating comes with a 5 year warranty and our Inspire range, built in Germany, comes with a 10 year warranty should an issue arise.

We are getting more and more customers who don’t simply want to use infrared to supplement the heating in their home, they want to take advantage of infrared heating as a whole home heating system.

>>> Learn more about the benefits of infrared heating in the home <<<

    Combi Boiler and Nest Thermostat – Watford, Hertfordshire

This installation comprised of a brand new Baxi Duotec condensing combination boiler (combi) with a Nest thermostat. The boiler and the heating controls were funded by the Green Deal, which is the Government approved energy saving scheme for homes in the UK.

Currently under the Green Deal, customers like Mr Mileusnic can take out a Government loan and pay this back through their electricity bills. The scheme is a “pay-as-you-save” scheme, which means that installing energy efficient measures like new condensing boilers and state of the art heating controls can save the average occupier £100s on their heating bills. The Green Deal Finance component is the borrowing against that anticipated savings, so the consumer like Mr Mileusnic is no worse off.

To qualify for the Green Deal, Mr Mileusnic used us for the Green Deal Assessment, where in this case Henry (one of our assessors) went round the property and spent about 2 hours explaining all the energy savings that the customer could benefit from. A new boiler, heating controls as well as solid wall insulation were the top 3 recommended measures. With this assessment, Mr Mileusnic through our local Green Deal Provider partner organisation applied for the Green Deal Finance and with it progressed the measures right up them being installed on the wall as you see here.

Most importantly with this help from the Green Deal the customer managed to minimise his household’s upfront cost for the installation, and also have a brand new boiler that is guaranteed for 7 years (labour & parts).

The new Baxi Duotec combi boiler is an A-rated boiler, having a seasonal efficiency of over 89%. The Nest thermostat is not only a tool allowing the customer to set the room temperature, it is also a highly technologically advanced heat control system. With the Nest the customer can set-up electronic on-off times, use the sleek left and right toggle to adjust the temperature, be told about the weather and most importantly set-up the thermostat so that it can be controlled with a smart phone remotely through the internet.

Not only are customers benefiting from energy savings, but they can use the thermostat to function around their own day-to-day busy schedules.

    External Solid Wall Insulation – Ealing, London

Ealing is a fairly central part of London and most of the houses there were built over 100 years ago, and most of these homes were constructed with solid 220mm brick walls. According to the Energy Saving Trust, uninsulated solid walls can account up to 35% of total heat loss, therefore addressing this area can make a big impact on the energy efficiency of the property.

The Elsley’s are benefiting from a much more insulated household, having installed external wall insulation to the back of their mid-terrace home. Most of you may think that mid-terrace properties are ok  in terms of keeping the heat as they only have two exposed walls  – while some of that is very true, as you can see the back of the house has in fact 3 exposed walls and if left uninsulated the heat just escapes and the property is not comfortable to live in.

Here, 100mm of Kreisel EPS solid wall insulation was used to insulate the external walls. The insulation boards stuck on with adhesive and are then mechanically fixed to the outside brick, held together by plastic caps. Once the boards are put in place they are then rendered over and finished with the waterproof top-coat.

The Elsley’s were pleased to have received some help from the Government grant, which was available to a limited number of applicants in 2014, with the rest of the project being self-funded.

According to the EPC report that was conducted before the installation date, the Elsley’s should save in the region of £200-£250 on their annual heating bills and as well as that should have a much cosier and warmer home.

    External Solid Wall Insulation- St Albans, Hertfordshire

St. Albans is a small a picturesque town on the edge of London, and if you have visited it yourself you would have noticed that the buildings are predominantly made out of solid brick walls.

This latest install happened right on the edge of town, which features many 1920s and 1930s solid brick properties. Mr Piper’s home is a 1920s detached property, and the reason he wanted to have solid wall insulation installed was not only to provide comfort and warmth but in addition to make his air source heat pump work more cost effectively.

100mm of the Kreisel EPS solution was installed to the main flank walls, one on the side and one on the back of the property. The Kreisel system is held together by mechanical fixings and reinforced but supplementary adhesive. The insulation is then prepared and finished over with a waterproof silicon silicut render.

The property had many openings for windows and doors and the key with external solid wall insulation is that as the walls are thickened with the boards, the window sills are extended and finished off so that no water penetrates the house. At the start of the insulating process the fixings like dishes, alarms and soil pipes are removed for the boards to be fixed in place. After this is done the fixings are put back into place and the top layers of adhesive, inner coat and outside render can be applied.

According to the energy reports carried out before and after the installation, the energy rating went up a whopping 15 points, going from a high E rating to a low C rating. Given that most solid brick properties have a poor energy score (less than than the average band D), having the solid wall insulation installed makes a big difference.

    External Solid Wall Insulation – Greenford, London

The external 100mm solid wall insulation solution has been installed on this semi-detached property in Greenford, Middlesex. In this case, Mr Smith has benefited a little bit from the Government grant with the rest of the project being self-financed.

Many properties in this part of Middlesex and Greater London were built either in the late 1800s or early 1900s with solid brick walls, which means cavity wall insulation is not possible to do. Solid wall insulation can either be installed on the inside or the outside of the property, and the customer chose external due to space considerations and to maximise the benefits of the externally applied render solution.

Having the 100mm EPS Kreisel system solution installed, has brought the property up to a band D rating on the EPC register. Not only has it improved the energy rating, the external wall solution will on average save Mr Smith’s family nearly £400 on heating bills. With the property being cosier and warmer it is also now protected from weathering, as the silicon silicut render goes on top of the insulation to provide all these additional benefits.

The photos below show some of the stages of the installation installation process:

Kreisel EPS external render system

Applying Kreisel EPS insulation boards.

external solid wall insulation

External solid wall insulation at the back of the property, Greenford London.

    External Wall Insulation – East London

Mr Mincher benefitted from the Government Green Deal Home Improvement Fund Grant, providing £6,000 towards the total cost of the works.

The house in Greenwich was insulated with 10cm thick EPS insulation boards and then rendered with a silicate render. The External Wall Insulation (EWI) system used was the Kreisel System, which is an approved Green Deal system.

Adding the 10cm of insulation to the walls resulted in a u-value of 0.27W/m2k, which is comparable with brand new cavity walls built today. 

It is estimated that this will save Mr Mincher over £180 a year (and it is worth noting that he is a low energy user) without taking into account any future energy price rises despite the fact in cash terms energy prices have doubled over the last 7 years.

In the following photos, you can see the transformation of the property over the course of the week.

Pre Install

Pre Install


Mayday Gardens during EWI installFinished house with coloured render finish.

    Boiler & Flue Gas Heat Recovery System – South London

With the help of our installation partner, this boiler was installed in South London under the Government’s Green Deal Home Improvement Fund, which allowed Linda (the customer) to access £1,500 worth of Government cashback towards the cost of the new boiler. The Green Deal in this case has significantly reduced the cost of the install to ensure that it was cost effective for the customer, and without it, the cost of the job would have been prohibitively more expensive. Linda also had an option to take out Green Deal finance, which can also reduce the upfront cost – however this option wasn’t taken-up this time.

The installation of this new Baxi combi boiler (including the flue gas heat recovery system) has taken the energy efficiency of the property from 46 on the EPC up to 55. In addition as part of the boiler install a Nest intelligent thermostat was also installed. This really is a neat piece of kit, allowing the customer to control the room temperature and the heating on & off times through an application over the internet. So, if you are on holiday and forgotten to turn your heating off, then you can use this thermostat stop you worrying.

It is estimated that the new heating controls along with the new heating system will save Linda approximately £118 per year – without taking into account any future energy price rises

TheGreenAge works across Greater London and the surrounding areas to provide energy saving advice as well as working with approved partners to deliver installations of  energy saving measures (insulation, energy efficient boilers, windows & renewables).


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