Despite all the attractiveness of wooden buildings, we are talking about cold floors, so to insulate a floor in a wooden house is necessary. This, in principle, is not a defect but a problem that builders must insulate a floor if, as a result of their activities, they want to provide the customer with comfortable housing that can maintain an optimal indoor microclimate.
Features of floor thermal insulation in a wooden house
Cold floors in log houses and houses made of timber are explained by cold air masses that, rising from the ground, penetrate through microscopic cracks. Insulate the floor helps correct the situation. Let’s take a closer look at the features and materials of thermal insulation.
As a rule, the designs of wooden houses provide a multi-level floor system. Between the rough and finishing levels insulation is carried. A layered cake can withstand significant loads and, at the same time, prevent heat loss. The choice of insulating material depends on the customer’s capabilities and preferences and the facility’s design features.
You should pay attention to the following parameters:
- Weight. Excessive weight of insulation can create additional load on the base. But, as a rule, this parameter concerns work in multi-storey buildings. After all, floor insulation in a low-rise wooden structure does not create such a problem.
- Moisture resistance. This indicator should be taken into account not only when insulating floors in “wet” rooms, such as a bath or kitchen. It is no less critical for thermal insulation of floors in “dry” spaces but in houses located in regions with a humid climate.
- Operating life. If you want to insulate the floor once and for many years, pay attention to the service life of the insulation material.
- Thermal conductivity. For any insulator, this is the leading indicator.
- Installation features. If you carry out floor insulation work in a wooden house with your hands, study the technology of laying the material before choosing it. Objectively evaluate your strengths. It’s another matter of a specialized team carrying out the work. Professionals always work with those materials, the installation they have mastered.
- Ceiling height.
- Fire resistance. This is a significant indicator for wooden buildings since finishing surfaces with fire-prone materials hides certain risks.
Popular forms of thermal insulation
Manufacturers offer thermal insulation materials in several forms. Some are easy to install, others are perfect for use on geometrically complex surfaces.
The most famous roll insulation materials are mineral wool and balsa wood. These materials can reduce density. They are soft, elastic, and easy to lay on imperfectly flat surfaces. Their advantage is that there is no need to level the base to a mirror state since minor grooves and bumps will be hidden under the soft layer. This increases the level of thermal protection.
But such material also has certain disadvantages. It is sensitive to high humidity conditions. When wet or condensed, it loses its thermal insulation properties and undergoes deformation. For these reasons, waterproofing accompanies the thermal protection of surfaces with rolled materials. Sometimes, roll insulation comes with a factory-made layer of foil, which protects them from moisture.
Lightweight boards or mats of low thermal conductivity material are excellent for insulating vertical or horizontal surfaces. Their feature is easy installation due to their large area. Two or three slabs are enough to cover the floor in a small room. The stability of the shape of the tile insulator can be considered both a plus and a minus. The plates retain their shape under moderate mechanical stress. And under significant pressure or shock, they break.
Polymer insulation is supplied in liquid form. Upon oxidation (contact with air), the material takes on a foamy structure and hardens. Its characteristic is low thermal conductivity, high resistance to open flames and high temperatures.
The main advantage of such insulation is filling all hard-to-reach places. An example of liquid polymer thermal protection is Penoizol (liquid foam).
There are also decorative paints with a unique composition. A surface painted with such paintwork materials receives additional heat-shielding properties.
Expanded clay, sawdust, and slag are the most famous bulk thermal insulation materials. Since they consist of small fractions, they densely fill the required volumes. The advantage of this type of insulation is the possibility of installation both on the base and directly on the ground, efficiency and low cost. The downside is the need to install additional beams for the finished floor. Accordingly, the floor level rises.
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