26th Mar 2024 -

In today's construction landscape, selecting the right insulation solution is crucial. Kingspan offers a diverse range of insulation products tailored for various projects. Throughout this guide, we explore essential factors for optimising Kingspan insulation benefits. 

From understanding compliance standards to implementing best installation practices, we offer practical advice to influence your insulation choices. We also help you navigate regulatory requirements and harness Kingspan's solutions to boost performance.

What are the building codes when installing insulation?

When installing insulation, professionals across the UK must adhere to all relevant building codes and regulations. Failure to comply can result in structural issues, safety hazards and potential legal consequences. Follow the key points below for a smooth installation process.

1. Adhere to stringent UK regulations

The Building Regulations 2010 govern the installation of insulation materials like Kingspan in the UK. Builders and contractors must comply with specific provisions outlined in these regulations. At the core of Kingspan's insulation lie materials with low thermal conductivities. 

Many products such as Kingspan Greenguard use insulation cores with conductivity values as low as 0.018-0.034 W/mK. This limited heat flow through the insulation material itself maximises its resistance to thermal transfer.

Kingspan's advanced insulation formulations outperform traditional materials, offering a superior barrier against heat transmission. These low thermal conductivities are a key contributor to its impressive U-value and R-value metrics.

2. Comply with fire safety provisions

Approved Document B (Fire Safety) outlines fire resistance standards that installers of Kingspan insulation must meet in full compliance with Regulation 7. This includes using approved insulation materials classified per BS EN 13501-1 with the proper fire-resistant coatings and cavity barriers. Carefully detail the insulation around windows, doors and other openings.

Kingspan designs its insulation products to comply with the stringent fire safety requirements outlined in Approved Document B. It measures its reaction-to-fire testing following BS EN 13501-1. This testing procedure evaluates critical fire performance parameters like heat release, smoke production and flame spread.

Kingspan insulation solutions meet the most demanding fire safety classification for buildings covered by the regulatory provisions. The insulation boards incorporate highly fire-resistant rigid thermoset formulations that resist combustion.

3. Meet thermal performance criteria

Approved Document L (Conservation of Fuel and Power) focuses on ensuring energy efficiency through proper insulation and airtightness levels. Kingspan installers must calculate insulation thicknesses and U-values to comply with the maximum values. They must also limit thermal bridging and air permeability.

Kingspan U-value ratings set new benchmarks for thermal resistance. Its Kooltherm rigid boards achieve low U-values down to 0.019 Watts per Metre Kelvin (W/m2K). Wall, roof and floor assemblies insulated with Kingspan Kooltherm provide a superior thermal barrier. 

The Thermaroof TR27 flat roof insulation system offers an exceptional U-value of 0.16 W/m2K. Even Kingspan Optim-R vacuum insulation panel options insulate with U-values as low as 0.026 W/m2K. Also, Kingspan's solutions outperform conventional insulation.

The Therma range of PIR insulation boards achieves R-values up to 7.6 per 25mm Kingspan board thickness. This exceptional thermal resistance enables effective insulation within confined spaces.

Kingspan's QuadCore insulation, with its unique matrix core design, boasts R-values over 8.5 per inch. These industry-leading R-values translate into thinner insulation requirements without compromising thermal performance,

4. Uphold environmental standards

The Green Guide to Specification rates construction materials. It helps meet The Building Regulations 2010 Approved Document 7 by promoting insulation products like Kingspan with low embodied energy. Installers should check the Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) and recyclability data meet these requirements.

Kingspan engineers its insulation products to meet and exceed the sustainable construction principles and environmental standards defined in Approved Document 7. It uses an Ozone Depleting Potential (ODP) of zero to comply with regulations prohibiting ozone-depleting materials.

Kingspan also minimises the Global Warming Potential (GWP) of its insulation materials by introducing thermally efficient blowing agents.

Insulation boards include a combination of high thermal resistance and low embodied environmental impact. The extended lifespan of the insulations reduces the need for replacements over a building's lifecycle. Kingspan facilitates material recycling by colour-coding its insulation facings. 

They also provide environmental product declarations and BRE Green Guide ratings. This helps to assist in achieving environmental certification like Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology (BREEAM).

Can you boost Kingspan insulation performance?

Whether you lay Kingspan floor insulation or install Kingspan wall insulation, all types can fail to meet UK building code requirements if installed, maintained or handled improperly. Avoid these crucial pitfalls that can undermine compliance and system performance over time.

1. Improper insulation board detailing

The smallest gaps, holes or poor sealing of Kingspan insulation boards can critically compromise airtightness. This allows excessive air leakage and thermal bridging, violating energy efficiency standards under Approved Document L.

Solution: Cut Kingspan insulated panels to fit tightly together with no gaps. Seal all board joints and service penetrations with tapes and sealants per Kingspan's specifications. This creates a continuous vapour-control layer with no voids where conditioned air can escape or moisture infiltrate.

2. Moisture accumulation within systems

If bulk water from leaks, rising dampness or condensation penetrates the Kingspan insulation boards, it degrades thermal performance over time. Moisture saturation increases conductivity and reduces insulating capacity, causing systems to fail U-value and heat loss standards.

Solution: Inspect and eliminate potential moisture sources through the proper installation of flashing and vapour barriers. Immediately replace any wet insulation to restore the designed thermal performance levels.

3. Disrupted fire barriers and cavity protection

Any breaches in the fire-rated cavity barriers and fire-stopping systems create a path for flames to penetrate cavities and continue spreading. This violates strict standards under Approved Document B.

Solution: Carefully follow Kingspan's tested designs for proper material use and detailing cavity breaks at window reveals and floor or roof intersections. Seal all breaks and joints using fire-stopping products.

4. Insufficient ventilation behind cladding/rainscreens

Lack of proper airflow in cavities behind exterior cladding or rainscreens can cause moisture problems. Also, deterioration of the Kingspan insulation can happen over time. Without drainage and drying potential, any incidental water buildup leads to saturation and mould growth.

Solution: Incorporate ventilation pathways and drainage provisions as outlined in standards such as BS 5250. This promotes air circulation behind the cladding to allow essential drying.

5. Substandard accessories

Using improper mechanical fixings, adhesives, sealants or other accessories for Kingspan systems risks compromising structural integrity and performance. It also violates regulations under Approved Document 7 while potentially voiding warranties.

Solution: Only install accessories certified for use with a specific Kingspan system by regulating bodies like the British Board of Agrément (BBA) and Building Research Establishment (BRE). Using uncertified alternatives is unacceptable.

How much maintenance does Kingspan require?

Maintaining Kingspan's high-performance solutions to align with compliance requires minimal effort. These low-maintenance systems keep buildings operating at peak energy efficiency for decades. Easily introduce these simple best practices into your maintenance schedule. 

External insulation systems

For rainscreen cladding systems, insulated render assemblies and other exterior insulation applications, conduct annual visual inspections. Look for any signs of impact damage, deterioration or insulation becoming detached. Quickly fix identified issues to maintain the continuous insulation barrier.

Interior insulation boards

Kingspan insulation boards require no maintenance once you install them behind interior wall and ceiling finishes. Their closed-cell structure resists moisture infiltration that could degrade thermal performance. For exposed applications, light clean every 3-5 years using vacuums to remove dust build-up.

Roof insulation assemblies

Roofing systems incorporating Kingspan roof insulation products follow typical roof maintenance guidelines. For example, inspect yearly and after major weather events to clear any debris. Ensure insulation upstands and detail work remain properly sealed against air, vapour and moisture penetration.

Checklist: What is required for Kingspan compliance?

Improperly installed insulation can undermine building safety and energy efficiency. Whether you use loft, floor or Kingspan cavity wall insulation, consult this comprehensive standard and compliance checklist. 

Fire safety requirements

  • Check all insulation materials carry the required reaction-to-fire classification per BS EN 13501-1 testing. This is outlined under Sections 4 and 12 of Approved Document B based on the building type and use.
  • Follow regulations to install coded fire-resistant coatings, cavity barriers and fire-stopping systems.
  • Install insulation boards in strict accordance with diagrams. Ensure all window reveals, door openings and service penetrations receive proper fire-stopping to block flame-spread paths.

Thermal performance

  • Calculate how thick an insulation sheet is and its U-values by the calculation methods outlined in Approved Document L to achieve maximum levels.
  • Seal all insulation board joints, edges and penetrations with vapour barrier tapes and sealants to maintain a sealed air or moisture barrier.
  • Remove and replace any insulation boards that have lost thermal resistance due to moisture exposure.

Environmental criteria

  • Identify insulation types and components with low embodied energy defined in the current Green Guide to Specification.
  • Check EPD data showing the Kingspan product's manufacturing and recyclability align with Approved Document 7 requirements.
  • Utilise accessories like tapes, mastics and fixings that have third-party certification for approved use with that particular insulation system assembly.

Ventilation and moisture management

  • Add drained and cross-ventilated air cavities behind rainscreen claddings following manufacturer provisions in BS 5250.
  • Inspect and repair moisture penetration points from leaks, rising dampness, condensation or other bulk water sources before covering.
  • Design vented cavities and drainage pathways wide enough for enough airflow to facilitate drying.

Excellent Kingspan insulation board options for all jobs

Discover superior insulation solutions offered by Kingspan insulation at Building Materials Nationwide. Our extensive selection showcases a diverse range of products designed to meet the unique needs of your construction projects. 

From high-performance Kingspan insulated plasterboard to Kingspan loft insulation, our selection ensures access to top-notch materials to enhance energy efficiency and meet regulatory standards. 
Trade customers looking to streamline their procurement process will benefit from opening a trade account with us. At Building Materials Nationwide, we understand the importance of efficient service and top-quality supplies for trade professionals.

By opening a trade account, you gain access to exclusive benefits. Enjoy competitive trade prices and personalised account management. Boost your projects with a trade account at Building Materials Nationwide. Sign up now or contact the team to learn more.

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