Knauf Insulation’s ThermoShell® rock External Wall Insulation (EWI) system has helped to refurbish four five-storey buildings containing a total of 54 flats. St Winifred’s in Croydon had the insulation fitted as part of a project by housing association, A2Dominion, to improve the energy efficiency of the one and two-bedroom flats. Knauf Insulation’s EWI system helped to achieve this upgrade. Residents are now enjoying comfortable and warm apartments, along with a reduction in their fuel bills.
Laura Donovan, Project Manager at A2Dominion commented: “We were experiencing damp and mould problems in the St Winifred’s flats. We therefore worked with infrastructure consultancy Mitie to find the best solution.”
As such, Knauf Insulation’s ThermoShell EWI was seen as the perfect fit for this project. The system meets current thermal regulations and is breathable to allow for the removal of water vapour, providing a healthier indoor climate and reducing associated problems with damp and condensation. Additionally, it is particularly suited to high-rise buildings and blocks of flats because it is externally insulated, meaning minimum disruption to occupants.
Johan van Zyl, regional operations manager at Mitie, said: “The U-values in the building are now 0.27W/m2k, which is far superior to what was being achieved before.
“The application of the ThermoShell rock EWI system has also helped to eliminate cold bridging, which will vastly improve any areas that had previously suffered from condensation and mould growth within the habitable areas. This has helped to take the residents out of fuel poverty by significantly reducing their fuel bills. Meanwhile, the weather resilient and hardwearing finish we selected for the project was TS-Silicone, a finish that is ideally suited for medium and high-rise applications as well as other high exposure projects.
“The project turnaround was a major factor as the work had to be done as quickly as possible for residents. With 75% of our installers on the project not able to install the EWI system, Knauf Insulation organised to get them trained up quickly at its training facility in Birmingham, this meant the project was delivered on time. The team at Knauf Insulation were brilliant; they were there every step of the way onsite to assist with anything that we needed.”
Another challenge for the project was the restricted access to the buildings due to the entrance being extremely narrow for vans to deliver material. However, A2Dominion, Mitie and Knauf Insulation worked together logistically to combat this by planning in smaller deliveries and managing operatives on site.
An additional benefit for A2Dominion’s property upgrade was the improved fire resistance, and enhanced acoustic protection from the surrounding traffic that Knauf Insulation’s EWI system provided.
Laura Donovan said: “The reason this project is so important is that it supports our strategy to continue to invest in and improve our existing housing stock and the energy efficiency of our homes. We teamed up with Mitie Property Services in 2013 to refurbish homes in Essex, Kent, Surrey, Sussex, Hampshire and Oxon, and to work in partnership on projects like St Winifred’s.
“I have worked on two other sites with Knauf Insulation and find the service it provides is good. Knauf Insulation offers you a service from start to finish with reports issued to the client on progress made on a regular basis.”