How to insulate your home for extreme weather

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How to insulate your home for extreme weather

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Project Overview

When you live in a place where winters are cold and summers are hot, it’s important to have effective insulation in your home.  Two-thirds of homes in New Zealand are either under-insulated or have no insulation at all. This guide shows you how to choose the right insulation for your home, how to install it and other ways to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer.

Continue to step-by-step instructions

Step by Step Instructions

1 Choosing the right insulation
2 Check the R value
3 Installing insulation
4 Check the size of the insulation
5 Install draft excluders
6 Reduce heat loss through windows
  • Step 1. Choosing the right insulation

    It’s important to choose the right kind of insulation for your home. Some insulations are more environmentally friendly like polyesters or wools, while others are made from fibreglass. If you have people living in the home with allergies or asthma, it’s recommended that you use a polyester or wool blend insulation.

  • Step 2. Check the R value

    Before you buy the insulation, check the R value on the packaging. The R value tells you how efficient the insulation is and how effective it will be in stopping the movement of air between two barriers. The higher the R value, the higher its efficiency. Check with your local council because they have minimum R value requirements in their building codes. Also check that you’re buying roof insulation for in the ceiling and wall insulation for between the walls.

  • Step 3. Installing insulation

    Installing insulation is a relatively easy DIY job. Always wear safety glasses, dust mask and gloves when handling insulation. Use the utility knife to cut it to size. Make sure there are no gaps between the insulation in your ceiling and wall space. In areas where the insulation is on angle, use the strapping and stapler to secure it. 

  • Step 4. Check the size of the insulation

    As well as the insulation’s R value, the packaging also has its length, width, thickness and how many pieces of insulation are in the pack. Pay particular attention to the thickness of the insulation, you don’t want it to be too thick for the area where you want to install it

  • Step 5. Install draft excluders

    Installing insulation is one way to help keep your house warm but almost 10% of heat is lost through drafts. That’s why it’s worth installing good draft excluders on all of your doors. This will stop the draft and reduce the heat loss in your home.

  • Step 6. Reduce heat loss through windows

    Your home loses a lot of warmth through its windows. To reduce this install double glazing in the windows where it’s possible. Thick curtains and blinds also help to reduce heat loss.
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Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint Test.
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