Floor insulation (suspended floor)

Priority for Completion: Low

This recommendation is triggered if the property has suspended external floors and it is not expected that they have been insulated. The exact benefit will depend upon a wide range of factors including the heating systems, the cost of the fuel used, the occupancy of the home and the size of the floor area. Generally, the more the home is occupied and the larger the floor, the bigger the savings will be. However, changes to your home's floors are difficult to implement, often require substantial financial investment and are likely to need professional tradesmen. This type of work is usually only worth undertaking on empty properties or when substantial alterations are being carried out. As a result we have rated this as being low priority.

What is suspended floor insulation?

Suspended floors have a space between them and the ground below. This may be large like a first floor overhang or room over a garage, or small like a traditionally built ground floor with floor boards. Heat from the home can easily escape through the floor to the outside world.

Suspended floor insulation is fitted under these floors to help trap heat and to keep the home warmer.

Fitting suspended floor insulation

Whilst the actual fitting of suspended floor insulation is not that complex, it does usually involve lifting the entire floor.

Where the underside of the floor can be accessed without lifting the floor, insulation can be fitted relatively easily. The process has a lot in common with insulating a loft and can be a DIY task but the insulation should be protected from damage by birds, animals or weather.

However, in most cases the floor will need to be entirely lifted to enable the insulation to be fitted. This is a major task and very difficult to complete if the home is occupied.

When fitting insulation of any form care should be taken to ensure that it is fitted properly. Gaps, uneven or improper fitting can cause problems with damp and condensation. Whilst some insulation materials are naturally fire retardant, others can present a fire hazard and are designed for use behind suitable protective layers.