Insulation and home heating - Wanaka
Better insulation and an efficient woodburner were installed in this Wanaka rental home make it warmer, healthier and less damp.
Vanessa lives in Wanaka with her daughter Emily. She enjoys living in such beautiful surroundings but is not so keen on the cold winters.
The 1960s home she rents has been very cold and damp and prone to health-threatening mould on walls and in cupboards. A friend suggested she contact a local charitable trust called Sustainable Wanaka, which exists to promote sustainable development at a community level.
Sustainable Wanaka provided advice on upgrading her property to make it healthier and more energy efficient. Her landlord's property management agent agreed to pay for the $8500 retrofit from its maintenance budget. The retrofit included:
- installing R5 Pink Batts in the ceilings
- insulating the living room walls with polystyrene offcuts from a new commercial development in Wanaka
- re-lining the living room walls
- installing a new, more efficient woodburner (this required building consent) including a heat transfer system taking the heat into the bedrooms
- laying polythene under the floors to prevent rising damp, and installing Pink Batts Cosyfloor foil-faced underfloor insulation
- installing an extract vent in the kitchen and a fan heater in the bathroom to remove moisture
- mould-treating infected areas.
All of the work was done while Vanessa was away on holiday. "Retrofits are more cost effective and less disruptive when several measures are carried out at the same time," says Jessica at Sustainable Wanaka. "We were able to organise this while Vanessa was away."
"Hopefully, when more funds become available, the remaining uninsulated walls in the house will be insulated and ideally the windows will be replaced with double glazing. It's important to ensure that all elements of the building envelope provide the best thermal resistance possible".
At the time of writing, Vanessa was looking forward to her first winter in the home, and was expecting it to be warmer and more comfortable. Sustainable Wanaka took temperature and dampness measurements before the renovation, and plans to monitor the improvements.
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Sustainable Wanaka's website is www.sustainablewanaka.co.nz.