Last Updated Jan 31, 2011 · Written by Jaclyn Fitzgerald
If you are short on space, adding a second storey makes all the difference. However, if you’d like your addition to be as energy efficient as possible, insulated panels are exactly what you need. Read on for more.
Insulated panels are made from a polystyrene insulation core that is sandwiched between two pieces of engineered timber. They are incredibly strong in nature so you can use them for internal and external walls, floors, and even roofs. Using them for your home means that you do not require a traditional timber or steel frame or brickwork as they are engineered and structural. As well, insulated panels are designed to fit together extremely well so that they are practically airtight. You can easily finish the panels in any way you like using cladding, render or other finishing materials.
There are several reasons why you should use insulated panels for adding your second storey. One major reason is how quickly the panels go up. Because they are pre-made in the factory, once they are on site, all you have to do to fit them together. Essentially they are a flat pack product in nature. They are so easy and fast to install and erect, minimising the tradesmen needed. In fact, a second storey can reach lock up stage in as little as three weeks! They are also so precisely cut that your walls and roof will be straight right from the get go and there will be less waste. This speed of installation means that your new second storey will be ready faster and you will save money on labour, making your new addition much cheaper than it otherwise would be.
Also, insulated panels are, of course, incredibly insulating! Using them for your second storey means that you will use much less in the way of heating and cooling, reducing the demand on the environment and saving you money on your electricity bills. As well, insulating panels are practically airtight so hot and cool air cannot enter or escape the building, and they also limit cold bridging (cold bridging is where joins such as studwork interrupts conventional insulation, providing spots where heat or cool can transfer). Insulated panels will also stand the test of time as the insulation will never move, sag or deteriorate. Using insulated panels for your second storey addition means that you will meet all future energy efficiency requirements with the panels giving you minimum 6 star energy efficiency.
Other benefits of using insulated panels include they there are termite resistant, cyclone resistant, fire resistant, and corrosion and rust free.