Sunday, 31 January 2010


Lots of dust, can feel it in the air.
Not very squashy, has to be cut to size.
We are only putting it in where there isn't enough space for sheep's wool.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

insulation begins

M started insulating the roof yesterday. After mulling all the materials that were on offer and changing my mind every day as to what would be best, cheapest, most eco-friendly M just went ahead and ordered lots of stuff. We are using the B&Q sheeps wool where we have space and shoving Celotex in between the rafters where there is less space, but mindful of leaving a gap for ventilation of the rafters. All good so far.
Discussed storage solutions with M and have decided on some neat ways of building cupboards and drawers to extend into the eaves space.
We are going to have to divert the drains when we start on the ground floor work. The plans currently showing the drainage from both neighbours as well as ourselves running directly under the house. D, the architect, arranged for a CCTV scan last Saturday, but the drains people were not able to get very far, because there was a bend in the pipe. Chris has been digging a hole over the bend, so that the drain people can come back and break into the drains at a spot past the bend. An architect friend in my ballet class commented that she hoped we didn't mind rats!! So we are going to have a beautifully refurbished, rat-infested home?
Anyway, the whole business is yet another delay, because D cannot make a decision on how waste flows from the bathroom we are installing in the attic until we know exactly where the drains are. This gives me a bit more time to mull over windows, tiles and bathroom fittings.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

insulating the loft - sheeps wool insulation

Today M came over to start on the work in the loft. We have two fair-sized attic rooms, a box room in between them and eaves which lots of junk or "fond memories" depending on your frame of mind.
M is going to put in a bathroom in the box room and then insulate our roof properly. Insulation has moved on in the last 10 years, when the roofers laid mineral rockwool layers in some parts of the roof an not others.
Our insulation is going to be a bit of a patchwork as some of the spaces we have between roof and ceiling are very narrow, but the aim is to make it a whole lot better than it is currently, so the rooms are not freezing in winter and insufferably hot in summer. The other issue is to maintain circulation of air, so that the rafters don't rot.
Today I have been researching the best insulation to use.
B&Q had a fantastic offer on their sheep wool insulation, but it was out of stock.I rang them up and they told me I could order in store they would get some in.
We had a discussion about sheep's wool at out last Transition Town meeting, so I thought I should just clarify. The material from B&Q is 55% natural sheep's wool, 35% recycled plastic and 10% polyester and it is moth- proofed. Apart from that I cannot find any technical details about this product. It is supplied by the John Cotton Group and is called "Sheep Wool Insulation" on the packaging.
The other products I have been able to find are Thermafleece and Thermafleece PB20 by Second Nature, and contain 85% and 60% sheeps wool respectively and there are pro and cons to both products. There is a very useful comparison chart on the Second Nature website. Both moth-proofed based on ISO 3998 and treated with fire-proofing agent.
The price at B&Q make this a no-brainer choice, but I would be interested to receive any comments on this.