How do you insulate a building to reduce home heating costs?

When insulating buildings, it is not only important what materials are used but also the time frame in which the insulation is carried out. These issues are clarified by our advice.

To insulate a building, we need the right weather conditions. Both too cold (below 5°C) and too hot outside temperatures can adversely affect the performance of the façade. If the temperature is too low, there may be a problem with the bonding of the adhesive or plastering. If the ambient temperature is too high, the plastering binds too quickly and there may be a problem with trowelling the plaster.

Manufacturers’ recommendations for temperatures and general weather conditions should be followed when using the various materials. It is also important to remember to protect the façade during the works. This can be done using special façade nets which, attached to the scaffolding, protect, for example, graphite polystyrene from too much sunlight which adversely affects this material (causes it to expand).

Façade work should also not be carried out during precipitation and very strong winds.

To insulate the building we need:
– insulation layer, e.g. polystyrene or mineral wool
– adhesive for polystyrene or wool. Adhesives are selected according to the insulation material used.
– reinforcing mesh, which is an essential reinforcement of the thermal insulation. The purpose of the mesh is to protect against possible damage to the thermal insulation layer of the façade, as well as to protect against shrinkage, which causes cracks to appear in the plastering.
corners with mesh to protect the corners of the building
ribbon beads for exterior plastering (starter strip)which facilitate the correct application of the thermal insulation and protect the façade from damage and from rodents entering the insulation. The installation of the façade begins with the fixing of the starter strip. It is selected according to the thickness of the insulation.
– plastering with the final colour of the building
– mechanical fasteners as an element to fix e.g. insulation to the wall. There is a need to stud the insulation layer in the case of uneven walls or with old plaster.

Before gluing styrofoam or wool, the substrate should be cleaned of any potentially unstable elements (e.g. fallen off pieces of old plaster), dust and greasy stains reducing the adhesive’s adhesion. The substrate should be even, and if it is not, repairs should be made beforehand with a plaster or levelling mortar. If the substrate is wet, do not glue the thermal insulation but allow it to dry. In the case of dusty substrates, they should be primed with a suitable preparation.

The cost of heating a building depends largely on the insulation we use. The determination of the U-value is important here. Styrofoam and wool manufacturers list such ratios on their products. Of course, the final U-value of the entire wall will depend not only on the thermal insulation itself, but also on the material used for the walls. Many manufacturers of these materials have wall insulation calculators on their websites when using and combining different materials. Based on this, we can determine which material will meet our expectations in terms of U-value.

Insulation must be done carefully, including window and door treatments. So-called thermal bridges often occur in these areas. The windows themselves also have a U-value, worse than a well-insulated wall, so the more windows in a building, the greater the losses. Investing in airtight windows also pays off in the long term.

We use mesh corners on the façade to better protect the corners of buildings from damage. By using corners, we can easily, quickly and aesthetically even out sharp wall edges and smooth out slight wall curves. The advantage of façade corners is that they are easy to install and have very good adhesion to any jointing compounds and plasters. They are weather-resistant. Correctly installed corners are completely invisible on the façade.

The starter strip is intended to facilitate the correct bonding of the insulation layer to the building. In fact, it is with the installation of the plinth starter strip that we begin the installation of the entire façade. The starter strip also performs other functions:

  • it is the base for the laying of the first board
  • facilitates alignment of the boards
  • provides protection against pests and rodents
  • protects the wheel against mechanical damage

The starter strip is mounted to the wall using wall plugs at a pre-determined height. We use three pegs per running metre of skirting board. It is necessary to fix the plinth at its extreme openings on two sides of the moulding.


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Corners with mesh

They protect building corners
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They protect plinths against damage