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Free and Cheap Insulation Official Discussion
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# 1
MSE Archna
Old 15-11-2011, 12:24 PM
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Default Free and Cheap Insulation Official Discussion




Free boilers, loft and cavity wall insulation

This thread is to discuss the article Free Boilers and Insulation and lists all the top freebies you can bag from energy suppliers.

Got any questions/feedback?

Let us know what you think of the guide and if you've managed to successfully get the freebies. Was it easy, did you have any problems, have you told friends & family about it?

Any good questions we'll add to the guide.

Thanks

MSE Archna

Last edited by MSE Jenny; 03-07-2013 at 10:09 AM.
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# 2
ChyEbren
Old 16-11-2011, 9:27 AM
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Default It's not "Free for all"! Please stop saying it is.

I really wish people, especially the government, but alas now including MoneySavingExpert, would stop advertising "free insulation for all". It's just not true. I live in rural Cornwall and my home, like so many in the countryside all over England, does not have cavity walls. I have had to spend thousands buying and installing special insulating wallpaper for my single-skin walls to try to reduce heating costs.

As usual the government have latched upon an easy, high-publicity-potential campaign which specifically benefits townies and ignores those of us who don't live in cities.

It's not benefits "for all", it's still very much for "some" only.

Sharon
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# 3
jcw17
Old 16-11-2011, 9:30 AM
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Please make people aware of door-to-door salesmen who are offering to come and fill your walls with cavity insulation - we get them approx. once a week!

We had someone about a month ago who wanted to come round and do this for us the following week but without conducting a survey first, he also claimed that it wouldn't cost us a penny but I knew having been looking into this we didn't qualify for a 100% grant. When I later contacted the company they couldn't tell me how this would be achieved, so I rang Trading Standards to ask if they knew anything about the company concerned. They said they were prevented from giving out details about specific companies but said they wouldn't recommened using anyone unless they were recommended by the Energy Saving Trust. Of course when I went to the EST website then this company wasn't listed at all. However, I did contact a company that was was recommended by the EST and they came and did a free survey yesterday morning and informed us that it is actually going to be quite tricky to fill our walls as we are going to need to hire scaffolding to go over the conservatory and move the shed so that they can get proper access to another wall. They all stressed how important it is for the walls to be completely filled as otherwise they will end up with temperature differences within a wall which could lead to condensation. My guess is that the original company would have just filled whatever they could get at and not worried about the areas they couldn't reach.

So, we have decided to wait until next year when we will need to hire scaffolding to paint the house and then will ask the EST recomended company to come back and install the installation ready for next winter.

So I guess it is the old story - if the offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
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# 4
JuniperBerry
Old 16-11-2011, 10:00 AM
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Anyone been able to get cavity insulation for just an extension part of the house ? Our main house had cavity wall insulation many years ago and it's working well but we then converted the garage to an extra room. That part does not have cavity wall insulation (and it wasn't required by the building regs at the time).
It's quite a large area but less than 20% of the total house and as a result it doesn't qualify under any of the free schemes.
I'd be happy to pay to have it done but again can't find anyone interested in doing that (South Worcestershire) so - unless someone here knows better ? - will have to put up with the heat loss. Very frustrating !
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# 5
MSE Archna
Old 16-11-2011, 10:28 AM
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChyEbren View Post
I really wish people, especially the government, but alas now including MoneySavingExpert, would stop advertising "free insulation for all". It's just not true. I live in rural Cornwall and my home, like so many in the countryside all over England, does not have cavity walls. I have had to spend thousands buying and installing special insulating wallpaper for my single-skin walls to try to reduce heating costs.

As usual the government have latched upon an easy, high-publicity-potential campaign which specifically benefits townies and ignores those of us who don't live in cities.

It's not benefits "for all", it's still very much for "some" only.

Sharon
Hi Sharon,

Thanks for the feedback, we will bear it mind. Don't forget though, that the free insulation includes loft insulation too - so hopefully you can still benefit from that. Loft insulation usually saves more because heat rises.

MSE Archna
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# 6
conflictivo
Old 16-11-2011, 10:37 AM
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I've had my walls checked and unfortunately they are not suitable for cavity wall insulation (1930's house). Does anyone know if there is a subsidy for the external cladding-type insulation or internal? The roof is well insulated, I hasten to add.
Thanks
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# 7
SophieMB
Old 16-11-2011, 10:58 AM
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Default Does cavity wall insulation cause damp?

I have been told by friends who are builders that the reason for having a cavity in walls is to prevent damp being able to travel from external walls to internal walls. Therefore, the idea of cavity wall insulation is ridiculous as it breaches the cavity and allows damp to penetrate to the internal wall. There is so much conflicting information out there with the government pushing for everyone to have cavity wall insulation but builders saying it is more hassle than it is worth and although you can get it put in for free (if you are eligible) it costs a whole lot more to get rid of if you have problems! I would really appreciate some advice on this as I am not quite sure what is best to do.
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# 8
Tillytish
Old 16-11-2011, 12:28 PM
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Default Cavity wall insulation

be careful to check that insulating your walls will not cause you damp. Google "Cavity wall cause damp" to get some interesting insights - AskJeff article is very good.
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# 9
Tillytish
Old 16-11-2011, 12:29 PM
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I believe there are some insulated wallpapers which may work for some people.
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# 10
freckled24
Old 16-11-2011, 12:45 PM
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Default Check carefully if British Gas customer in a flat!

I called British Gas just now to check restrictions for the wall cavity insulation. I am not eligible because my neighbour in the flat above (1 person) is not over 70, not on benefits and not a British Gas customer (i own one of the 2 flats in a converted house).

If he pays to have the cavity insulation done, i then get mine for free. I can ask him but am pretty sure he's not going to fork out over 100 just so i can get something for free, even if it hopefully would save him money on heating in the long run.

Where is it written that people working full time, under 70 and not claiming benefits can afford the rising gas and electricity costs any more than those over 70 and claiming benefits???
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# 11
SewerSide
Old 16-11-2011, 12:57 PM
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Quote:
Some of the suppliers will install free insulation in flats - definitely EDF Energy - but you do have to get the insulation installed for the whole block, which means seeking agreement from all your neighbours.
But on the EDF page:

Quote:
  • Confirm your home is not a flat or maisonette, or that the insulation is not for an extension only.
Anyone rang EDF to ask about flats?
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# 12
Brummie71
Old 16-11-2011, 1:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SophieMB View Post
I have been told by friends who are builders that the reason for having a cavity in walls is to prevent damp being able to travel from external walls to internal walls. Therefore, the idea of cavity wall insulation is ridiculous as it breaches the cavity and allows damp to penetrate to the internal wall. There is so much conflicting information out there with the government pushing for everyone to have cavity wall insulation but builders saying it is more hassle than it is worth and although you can get it put in for free (if you are eligible) it costs a whole lot more to get rid of if you have problems! I would really appreciate some advice on this as I am not quite sure what is best to do.
If your property is in a particularly exposed position, then the cavity will indeed protect against water ingress caused by driving rain. Elsewhere, the reason for putting a cavity in was really more down to cost - using blockwork as an inner skin is cheaper and quicker than brickwork. A reputable insulation surveyor will use a borescope to check the cavity - make sure that it is the right width, that it isn't obstructed by debris and no obvious problem with the wall ties - and then arrange the installation if your property is suitable.

Properties with steel or timber framed construction aren't suitable for cavity wall insulation, as it can create a nice warm patch to allow condensation to form and rust the steel/rot the wood. In fact, those steel-framed buildings are a challenge to mortgage or even insure in some cases.

The insulating materials used today simply do not absorb water, so providing your wall cavity is suitable, there really won't be a problem.
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# 13
lowlylittlecog
Old 16-11-2011, 2:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChyEbren View Post
I really wish people, especially the government, but alas now including MoneySavingExpert, would stop advertising "free insulation for all". It's just not true. I live in rural Cornwall and my home, like so many in the countryside all over England, does not have cavity walls. I have had to spend thousands buying and installing special insulating wallpaper for my single-skin walls to try to reduce heating costs.

As usual the government have latched upon an easy, high-publicity-potential campaign which specifically benefits townies and ignores those of us who don't live in cities.

It's not benefits "for all", it's still very much for "some" only.

Sharon
Uh uh... when did this become a "townies" versus "country folk" argument? Solid walled houses exist all over the country... my parents used to live in a terraced house in a town with solid stone walls.

Cavity walls were first introduced in the 1800s, and didn't become widely used until the early 1930s, hence houses built before 1930 may not have cavity walls, irrespective of their location.

If you read the offers from the energy suppliers, at least one of them offers you the choice of either wall or loft insulation.
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# 14
RoyBrock7898
Old 16-11-2011, 2:50 PM
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Default Smoke and Mirrors

These offers, as it says, are neither free nor for all.

Now I need some wall panels to fit on the inside of an exposed bedroom wall. Covered? Not at all.

If I did install the loft and wall insulation I can save 300 (it says). It also says I can save 135 with wall insulation and 175 with loft insulation. My math makes that 310.

But wait, lower down the page I am told the combined saving will be 200.

It seems these figures are simply plucked from the air. What size house? One floor or two? Exposed or sheltered? At home all day or not? High temperature or not?

40 years ago my house was fitted with cavity foam so wall insulation in the cavity is out.

When I moved in it had about 60mm of loft insulation. I have increased this to 125mm under 20mm chipboard flooring with 450mm around the unfloored portion.

What saving could I expect? My gas bill is around 360 and that includes a gas tumble drier and gas water heater. I use the same argument with solar heating salesmen. A 4500 installation would take over 20 years to pay for itself even assuming all my hot water needs were met with solar.
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# 15
wilconw
Old 16-11-2011, 3:52 PM
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Default Open to all??? I don't think so either

I asked British Gas for cavity wall insulation and waited two months for a surveyor to call to look at my property.
She immediately said that my property wasn't suitable as, although it has a damp proof course, the exterior walls have been rendered down to the ground therefore covering the dpc.
She was sympathetic and stated a lot of houses in this area (North Lancashire) had the same issues but there was nothing British Gas could do as, in order to give a guarantee, the dpc needed to be exposed.
The surveyor did assure me that, should the situation change, British Gas would contact me. Time will tell.
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# 16
Tups
Old 16-11-2011, 6:22 PM
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Rang BG to enquire as already a customer & have home care agreement but not at all helpful. Only had 'selected time slots on selected days' - no help when single person working all hours to make enough to pay the bills & working for companies where have to book time off well in advance.
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# 17
LynneM85
Old 16-11-2011, 9:16 PM
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Default Free Cavity Wall insulation / British Gas

My parents are long-time customers of B.G. and enquired about cavity-wall insulation. After waiting weeks for a surveyor, a man called and was invited inside. As soon as he saw the gas fire, (which is hardly ever used), he stated that they would require a flue liner which, of course, is not free.
He was politely asked to leave.
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# 18
anthil
Old 16-11-2011, 10:24 PM
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Hi, reading back through the thread this has sort of been covered, but for the sake of clarity ...

I live in a late Victorian terraced house with solid walls. When making alterations I had insulated plasterboard fitted to the kitchen walls which has made a considerable difference to the temperature in there. It's now time to refit the bathroom and I am hoping to fit the same kind of thing there on to the outside walls but it's pricey stuff to buy.

Does anyone know of any free / subsidised or just downright cheap way of getting this type of plasterboard for a single person who lives alone, has no dependents, claims no benefits and works but earns b****r all ?

Thanks for any help

Cheers

A
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# 19
JPURKIS
Old 16-11-2011, 11:23 PM
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Question

I having taken up cavity wall insulation offers yet as I'm not sure who to use. Are all subcontractors who do the work doing a proper job or are some better than others. Like double glazing firms there are so many out there but can there be rogue ones as well.
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# 20
globalds
Old 16-11-2011, 11:35 PM
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There are some crazy offers on loft insulation at the moment ...People should post them up as well.

If you haven't done your loft up to the new levels then it can be done for a really good price ..More than likely it will pay for itself in one or two seasons.

the current recommendation is for 10 inches or 250 mm of depth in the loft.

I have just done it with Knauf space blanket using 2 offers one from Wickes ..Buy 1 get 3 free http://www.wickes.co.uk/insulation/l...WT.ac=SP000739
for the smaller rolls and a Band Q offer that has finished for the larger rolls ...70 has done my loft.
Speak when you are angry--and you will make the best speech you'll ever regret

Anger makes dull men witty, but it keeps them poor.

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