Storm damage? Here's what you need to know about your insulation

Storm damage? Here's what you need to know about your insulation

Home comfort tip

Home comfort tips

Has your home been affected by water due to a storm or flood? Understand what you need to do with wet insulation batts in walls, roofs, ceiling and floors.

There are few things more devastating than a weather event which invades your home. And it can be overwhelming to deal with – where do you start when a tree has come crashing through your roof after a storm, as recently happened to one of our own here at CSR Bradford?

At CSR Bradford, we are here to help. Here are some practical tips on what you need to consider when your insulation batts have gotten wet, whether they’re in your roof, ceiling, walls or under your floor. If you need more information or want to get someone out to help, please call us on 1300 760 233.

What can happen if your insulation gets wet

Glasswool insulation, like Bradford’s, utilises the air pockets between the fibres of spun glass to trap heat. If the insulation gets very wet, it can be compressed by the weight of the water and it may not recover to its original thickness, meaning it will not perform as well to trap the heat flow between inside and outside.

Water trapped in the insulation batts can also cause mould growth, or possibly leak out onto your plasterboard, causing unsightly staining and damage.

Finally, insulation which is installed behind metal cladding can cause rust and corrosion.

Storm damage
Storm affected insulation batts

With this in mind, it’s always a good idea after your house is impacted by a weather event to get the insulation assessed. Bradford has a network of installers who are available to come to you and offer advice. Contact us for help.

Assessing the damage to your insulation

The first step after any damage to your home is to contact your insurance company. However, if you want to have some idea yourself and you can safely view the insulation, here are some questions to consider:

Is the insulation damaged by water?

  • If it is damaged by water, it will be required to be replaced. Even if dried out, it will not recover its original thickness and therefore the effectiveness of the insulation will be significantly reduced.

Is the insulation torn, damaged or compressed by the building damage?

CSR Bradford says
The good news is, if only a few batts are damaged, you only need to replace those ones. Bradford residential insulation batts are guaranteed to perform for 70 years, so there’s no need to fix anything that doesn’t have any damage.
  • If the batts or blanket are still intact and full-size, then they may be able to be reinstalled. However if the insulation is torn or shredded, you will need to consider replacing it. You can install pieces of insulation such as off-cuts into a space, but glasswool insulation depends upon full coverage to be effective, otherwise heat can escape through small holes and spaces.

Disposal of damaged insulation

It is recommended to use gloves and long-sleeves to avoid the short-term irritation from the glass fibres. However, please be assured that Bradford insulation is composed of bio-soluble fibres which do not pose any risk to health, nor do they cause dermatitis or other skin conditions. Any irritation caused should be resolved by a shower. In fact, our insulation is less bio-persistent (a measure of whether a compound will remain inside a biological organism such as the human body, instead of being expelled or broken down) than the dust you inhale as you walk down the street.

Once you have removed the insulation, please contact your local authorities about disposal. Some rubbish disposal places may require insulation to be placed in bags to stop the batt breaking up and being blown around.

How to prepare for a storm?

To help minimise the potential impact of a storm, here are some recommended prevention measures:

    1Trim tree branches

    Trim tree branches that could fall on your home during a storm.

    Storm damage
    Do you want to avoid this?

    2Check blockages

    Clear your gutters, drains and downpipes from leaves and other blockages so that rain can drain away and avoid pooling around and entering your home.

    3Tidy up outside

    Ensure a tidy yard and store away or secure items that may be blown around and cause damage in strong winds such as outdoor furniture.

    4Inspect your roof

    Ensure that your roof has no pre-existing damage such as broken and missing roof tiles or roof sheeting that needs to be patched or replaced. It is also important to check that no light is shining through your roof space as this indicates that your roof or roof sarking may be damaged.

Build your home to help prevent water damage with sarking and wall wrap

Although nothing is going to prevent the damage caused by a tree falling through your roof or a major flood event, there are things you can do when building your house to help prevent small amounts of water entering your home through cracks in walls or roofs – small amounts of water which can still cause major damage to your home, often unseen.

Wall Wrap and Sarking to reduce moisture entry

When building a new home or replacing a tiled roof, ask your builder about wall wrap and roof sarking. These products provide a protective second skin for your home, preventing the entry storm-driven rain, dust and draughts into your home. They also add thermal performance by reducing air-flow around insulation and through the wall frame, meaning you have better control over your home’s internal environment, and can provide ember protection in bushfire-rated zones.

Find out more:

Have you been affected by storm, flood or water damage? Get your free insulation quote today.

If you’re looking to replace your insulation, think Bradford, the brand the builders use. Our network of trained installers can remove your damaged insulation and dispose of it according to local regulations, and replace it with fresh, high-performance insulation to make your home as comfortable as possible.

We have been manufacturing in Australia for over 80 years - insulation batts suited to Australian conditions. Contact us for a free quote.

Further information:

How to stop the winter chill from turning your home from a comfortable sanctuary to a cold draughty box.

If you want the truth about glasswool insulation, we've got it for you. Bradford is a trusted source of knowledge and we'd love to share it with you.