How to Fix Problems with Elevated Floors
If you have an older home, then you may struggle to make it energy efficient, mainly due to its design. You may have spent a lot of money to insulate the walls and the attic so that you can avoid the worst issues, but you're still finding it difficult to make a real difference. The problem could be beneath your feet instead, especially if you have an elevated floor in your house.
Issues with Elevation
When they were first introduced, elevated floors were thought to be the perfect answer to rising damp in the structure. After all, the wood floor would often sit directly on top of the ground underneath and it would be difficult to keep moisture at bay, especially in a wet climate. While an elevated floor will certainly alleviate that issue, especially when combined with an adequate underfloor ventilation system, other problems may still arise.
In order to deal with energy loss or drafts in the home, you should think about installing some underfloor insulation. There are various different ways to approach this, but you must make sure that the insulation stays in place, does not lose its integrity and is not affected by any movement in the underfloor space.
You will need to ensure high levels of thermal performance while allowing the insulation to breathe correctly and to deal with moisture. This insulation should be suspended between the floor joists and held in place by membranes for the long term. Your choice of insulation material will be crucial so that it is naturally hygroscopic, but it must also be able to withstand any structural movement or heavy traffic above. Once the insulation has been installed, you should consider adding an airtight membrane on top as well, before you reintroduce your floorboards.
Dealing with the Elements
Remember, if your underfloor area is open to the elements in order to allow it to breathe, it can be subject to significant air movement on a particularly windy day. If you fail to install your insulation material properly then it can become dislodged in this scenario, fall to the floor and compromise the entire project.
Talk with your insulation experts and see what they recommend for your property. There are a number of different products on the market, but whatever you choose, you need to ensure that it is properly fitted and can protect your property for the long haul.