EWI:Homeowner Basics

If you are a homeowner looking for a solution to reduce energy costs and create a cosier home, then External Wall Insulation (EWI) could be the answer.

An EWI system is added to the exterior of the home, this means there will be no reduction of floor space inside the building from the installation of the thermal insulation. In addition, there will be no need to remove any objects found on the walls such as built in storage, wardrobes, and radiators, resulting in minimum disruption to the interior of your home. An EWI system is suitable for old or unconventional buildings and for a number of different building constructions, including solid walls as well as those with cavity insulation. It is also suitable for new builds and extensions looking to achieve a specific energy efficiency. 

There are many benefits of EWI and the main seven are listed below:

·Consistent room temperature: With EWI warmth is retained in the internal solid walls and not released to the outside. The walls then radiate this stored heat into the room. On warmer days the EWI system will deflect the heat to keep the rooms inside the home cool.

·Reduction of drafts: To avoid drafty rooms the difference between the air and surface temperature of a wall should be no more than 3℃. Anything greater than 3℃ will lead to drafts caused by convection. The installation of EWI can reduce this effect without the need to turn up the thermostat.

· Stabilising air humidity: EWI helps to balance the climate inside your home, this in turn helps regulate air humidity. If humidity drops too low it can cause dry throat, nose, and eyes. If humidity is too high, the air is unable to adequately absorb moisture dispersed in the room leading to condensation and the formation of mould, especially during cold weather.

· Prevention of Mould: A combination of EWI and the right choice in plaster system such as Baumit Klima internal plasters which are lime based with climate-regulating and mould preventing properties will allow you to create a healthy living environment.

·Saving Energy: You can reduce your energy costs by up to 50% by installing EWI. If you are building a new home Baumit systems are suitable for building to Passive House Standard or to achieve a zero-energy home.

·Lower construction costs: An EWI system makes it possible to slim down the thickness of the masonry, reducing brick thickness and hence construction costs. In the long term an EWI system protects the masonry like a reinforcing layer, providing protection from temperature fluctuations, weathering, and rain.

· Environmental benefits: Insulating a house is a sustainable choice that pays dividends over its entire lifespan. CO2 savings add up year after year: By minimizing energy consumption for heating and cooling, insulation significantly reduces CO2 emissions, making a positive impact on the environment for years to come. It's an investment in both comfort and sustainability. The carbon dioxide savings achieved by just one square meter of insulation equals the oxygen production of two trees over a year. However, the CO2e savings don't end there; they multiply each year over the entire lifetime of each insulated building.

In simple terms the EWI system is installed by insulating boards being placed on the external surface of all the vertical walls of a building and then covered with a protective, decorative render. For an average size home, the whole process will take 9-10 days’ work spread over 3-4 weeks to allow for drying. This is not classed as an extension to the building walls as it is only another layer of around 100mm/ 4 inches being added to the wall. However, this may mean some alteration to exterior fittings and fixtures and as such a Building Notice is required. You will be able to visit your local council website for more information. There are exceptions to this if your home boundary is directly on the public pavement and this extra depth can be reviewed as an encroachment onto public space or if your home is listed in an Area of Outstanding Beauty or a Conservation Area you will need to apply for Planning Permission. 

The finish available to homeowners is extensive, Baumit has over 1000 render colours in their Life range. There is also different textures and grain sizes to choose from, meaning an individual appearance can be achieved and unlimited design possibilities.

If you are exploring the idea of EWI, Baumit hold a list of approved installers. An approved installer will be able to show you a card issued by Baumit which states the date they trained at one of our academies, they can then issue a 10-year warranty if their card is in date, and they have followed the specification supplied by Baumit. To find out more about approved installers in your area email contact@baumit.co.uk