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Double glaze in brick veneer - madness?

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  1. #1
    Apprentice (new member)
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    Default Double glaze in brick veneer - madness?

    Hi All,

    We are in a brick veneer house in Canberra. A govvie with some extensions. What I want to know is: Would I be wasting my time (and money) putting double glazing in when the entire house is "underspec". Should I just be holding out until I can afford to build another house ( in twenty years)? I have taken steps to improve the insulation: covered the massive hole in the plasterboard behind the kitchen cupboards and caulked around most of the skirting boards. But I'm reaching the limit of benefits I can get from that type of exercise.

    Can anyone out there point me in the right direction? Alternative sugestions also welcome.

    Thanks

    Steve

  2. #2
    Novice PuppyPaw's Avatar
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    is the house completely insulated and the roof heavily insulated?

    Might be worth it.. but then again, it could end up being a wast of money.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuppyPaw View Post
    is the house completely insulated and the roof heavily insulated?

    Might be worth it.. but then again, it could end up being a wast of money.
    The roof is well insulated but not the walls. They are just a plasterboard skin inside the brick with a gap the wind can whistle up (big enough in places for possums to get up inside). I wasn't thinking of putting insulation in the walls. Maybe that would be a better plan.

    One option for improving the house would be to increase the thermal mass inside. The mass of the brick veneer is all on the outside. It would be a reasonably big project. I have no idea whether this would bring the improvements I want and I haven't come across anything more than very general information in this area. I guess I was after some source of info that would help me decide whether it would be feasible before going and getting an architect.

    Steve

  4. #4
    Novice PuppyPaw's Avatar
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    The first port of call should be putting insulation into the walls, that its self will increase comfort of the house and lower any heating/cooling costs.

    You can get spray in insulation made from recycled materials and so forth.

    But if you plan on renovating then during the renovation you can put in batts, personally would opt for wool insulation because its the most friendly and has very good r rating.

    A site you might want to look at is http://www.greenhouse.gov.au/yourhome/index.htm
    It will help explain everything you want to know about insulating your home.

  5. #5
    1K Club Member journeyman Mick's Avatar
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    How do you insulate a brick veneer wall without losing the gap? Anything that touches the inside of the brickwork has the potential to wick water across the gap. Much as I hate the cold I reckon I'd rather livein a cold house than a damp house.

    Mick
    "If you need a machine today and don't buy it,

    tomorrow you will have paid for it and not have it."

    - Henry Ford 1938

  6. #6
    Novice PuppyPaw's Avatar
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    how strange, my father lives in a brick veneer and there is only about 10mm between the brick and the outter wall then the space between the outter wall and inner wall and the insulation went in there. I'm surprised that there is brick veneer and then the internal wall, is that standard stuff?

  7. #7
    1K Club Member journeyman Mick's Avatar
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    The timber (or steel) stud wall holds up the house. The bricks just keep the water out (and bricklayers just hold everyone up! ) The gap between the bricks and anything else must be there to prevent any moisture transfer as the bricks are porous. When you say that the insulation went in "there" do you mean in the gap between the brick veneer and the wall framing or inbetween the studs? Also wondering how you get the insulation in once the place has been built, as in Steve's case?

    Mick
    "If you need a machine today and don't buy it,

    tomorrow you will have paid for it and not have it."

    - Henry Ford 1938

  8. #8
    Novice PuppyPaw's Avatar
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    sorry for the poor explanation.

    The insulation went between the studs, there was the brick veneer, 10mm gap, some sort of board, the studs (where the insulation went) then the internal plaster walls.

    When my father brought the place it didn't have insulation, but he had it blown in, they drill a holes into the wall all over the place and then use a gun to blow in lose insulation.

    In another area of the house the plaster came down for renovations so batts where put in for that area.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuppyPaw View Post
    The first port of call should be putting insulation into the walls, that its self will increase comfort of the house and lower any heating/cooling costs.

    You can get spray in insulation made from recycled materials and so forth.

    But if you plan on renovating then during the renovation you can put in batts, personally would opt for wool insulation because its the most friendly and has very good r rating.

    A site you might want to look at is http://www.greenhouse.gov.au/yourhome/index.htm
    It will help explain everything you want to know about insulating your home.
    Thanks PP. This website is exactly what I am looking for.

    Steve

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuppyPaw View Post
    The insulation went between the studs, there was the brick veneer, 10mm gap, some sort of board, the studs (where the insulation went) then the internal plaster walls.

    When my father brought the place it didn't have insulation, but he had it blown in, they drill a holes into the wall all over the place and then use a gun to blow in lose insulation.

    In another area of the house the plaster came down for renovations so batts where put in for that area.
    Many houses that aren't insulated won't have board or foil on the outside of the studs. However SteveMcM might find that he is lucky and there is foil there. The newer parts of my weatherboard house have foil in the walls and the older parts don't.

    If the plasterboard came off, you could put in rigid insulation battens (e.g. foam) or fit foil from the inside.

    In Canberra, it might be worth getting in one of those energy rating guys as they could tell you the cheapest way to increase insulation.

    I looked into double glazing our windows in our weatherboard house in Melbourne which only has insulation in the ceiling. I concluded that the heat lost through the walls of our bedroom was slightly more than the heat lost through the large window. Heavy curtains reduce the heat lost through the windows dramatically.

    You could always put in false walls and ceiling.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Trav's Avatar
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    Welcome to another Canberran.

    Justright insulation do the inwall insulation. They take off a few roof tiles and blow the insulation down into the gap between plaster and bricks. Not sure how they get around the problem Mick mentioned of wicking water.

    Cost is pretty reasonable - it depends on how many windows you have, as it is much trickier to get the insulation in.

    I agree that the best thing you could do would be to get proper lined curtains - not the crappy tab top ones you get a freedom furniture. It makes a huge difference. Pelmets also make a large difference.

    I suspect that retrofitting double glazing will be way too expensive. It would involve replacing all your windows and sliding glass doors - and they are outrageously expensive.

    If you are interested in saving energy, one of the best things you could do is to upgrade your heater to a ducted gas system or similar. We upgraded our heater and the difference to the temp and gas bill was huge.

    Trav
    Some days we are the flies; some days we are the windscreen

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