New Homes

New home insulation in the Bay of Plenty area

Building a new home in the Bay of Plenty? Congratulations. You will want to ensure that what is probably your biggest asset is properly insulated from the start. There are many products and installers out there, all with various claims about their products and service. Premier Insulation is one of them. So, why are we better?

To achieve a better result, we developed and patented our own unique method of installation using rolls of blanket insulation and on-site cutting tables. This enables us to cut and fit precise slabs of blanket to each area and we can infinitely vary the width of each piece from 0 to over 2 metres. The result is an unparalleled standard of cover with specifically sized products and less than 1/3 of the insulation joins of pre-cut pieces on average. We create a ceiling insulation envelope with increased integrity by greatly reducing the incidence and chance of loss creating gaps.  

Diagrams showing the theoretical benefits of this method are shown to the right of this section. Premier Insulation can install our own brand of highest quality glass wool insulation – a range we have improved and refined for more than a decade. 

What does insulation do? Insulation in exterior walls and ceilings and underfloor is designed to keep heat inside the home during cold months and to keep excess heat outside the home in warm months. Insulation in these areas will also reduce noise entering the home and will similarly suppress sound leaving the home. Insulation can be installed in interior walls and floors for sound suppression within the home.

Most companies and builders install pre-cut new home insulation as many installers lack the ability to properly handle blanket rolls on a building site. The pre-cut technique involves cutting the blanket up into small pieces at the factory and sending it to the building site where installers attempt to patch it back together into a seamless blanket again. The technique is designed for unskilled labourers, not for the most effective insulation envelope. 
Standard Pre-Cut Purpose Cut comparison in Bay of Plenty
Insulation has the effect of reducing or preventing condensation on interior linings of walls and ceilings in cold months. This helps prevent the formation of mould, mildew and the associated conditions that a damp home brings.

Studies show the positive effect that warm, dry homes have on health. New home insulation helps provide the ability to help keep the interior of homes warm and dry.

Insulation is a vital part of your new home and is worthy of the same care and consideration you give to the cladding, kitchen and bathrooms. You have no way of knowing whether the new house insulation work is satisfactory unless you have approved the product and carefully checked the installation before lining.

If you think that this can be left to your builder and inspectors, we suggest you view the photos in this website, taken after professional installers had finished installing insulation into these homes. The homes had been inspected and passed as ready for lining by the local authorities. They are in no way unusual in the industry. If you are to future proof your home to ensure it achieves and maintains a desirable level of comfort long term it is vital your new house insulation product has longevity and that it is installed effectively.

Acoustic Insulation

People are becoming more aware of and interested in the benefits of putting acoustic insulation in their homes, but there is considerable confusion about it. Any insulation material will offer both thermal and acoustic protection. Generally, the thermal effectiveness of an insulation material increases at a rate similar to its thickness. The acoustic effectiveness is more dependent on the density of the product. Most of the more usual blanket type insulation products have similar acoustic properties and values to each other. Some manufacturers change the colour and price and call one ‘acoustic’ and the other ‘thermal’ even though the two may be almost identical in composition and do an almost identical job both thermally and acoustically.

There are some specialist products manufactured specifically for acoustic performance that come in a variety of different materials, primarily compressed polyester or glass wool, supplied as a sheet. They are 3 –5 times the price of standard new house insulation and are usually seen in specific situations in commercial work. They are rarely used in residential buildings due to the cost and sometimes the difficulty of installing them to their full potential in a residential design.

For most residential situations, effective acoustic dampening can be achieved at minimal cost by using a standard thermal/acoustic new home insulation product in the walls or ceiling and installing multiple layers of plasterboard as the lining. It is important to avoid breaching the plasterboard, for example, with back-to-back switches and power points.

While insulation and multiple plasterboard linings will dampen air noise like speech, stereos and TVs, it will be less effective against direct transference noise such as a chair scraping over the floor above or direct thumping on a wall. For this type of suppression, it is important to provide a break in the direct fastening of the plasterboard to the frames, joists or ceiling battens. This can be achieved by using one of a number of propriety solutions that usually involve holding the plasterboard off the wall frames and ceiling joists with brackets.

Be aware that any break in an acoustic wall has the potential to seriously reduce its effectiveness. For example, a standard hollow core door in an acoustic wall will render the acoustic performance of the wall virtually useless as the sound will simply carry through the door. If an acoustic wall must have an opening such as a door, it is vital that it have the appropriate acoustic rating and seals.

A note on plans

An architect or draughtsman will draw up the plans for your house. On the specification sheet and usually on the sectional drawings there will be a note about the type and the R value of the insulation to be installed and perhaps the type. Sometimes the specifications will be very detailed and specific, for example “Ceiling insulation to be R2.9 Premier A Grade Brand glass wool, installed by Premier Insulation Ltd. No substitutes to be allowed”. Sometimes the specs may be somewhat vague, for example “Wall insulation to comply with code”. Under regulations updated in 2008, every building needs to be assessed individually if it is to comply with the code. It is expected that the Architect or Draughtsperson will have calculated the required R value of the new home insulation needed and noted this on the plans. Should no specific R value requirement be noted on the plans then the building should be assessed accordingly to calculate this requirement. In many cases the R value of the insulation material will need to be higher than the overall value needed to compensate for the lower rating of the other materials in the construction. The Architect should be consulted for this requirement. If the insulation R value requirement given is the same or less than the code requirement for that component, for example R2.0 for walls Area 2, then this should be checked with the Architect and if necessary against the BRANZ House Insulation Guide, Third Edition.

There is generally no requirement to follow the insulation TYPE noted on the plans unless issues like dampness are a concern.

Requirements for Residential Area 1, being the Auckland / Northland areas of the North Island:
  • R1.9 for exterior walls
  • R2.9 for exterior ceilings
  • R1.3 for exterior floors
Requirements for Residential Area 2, being the remainder of the North Island excluding the Central Plateau:
  • R1.9 for exterior walls
  • R2.9 for exterior ceilings
  • R1.3 for exterior floors

For Residential Area 3 being the South Island and Central Plateau North Island:
  • R2.0 for external walls
  • R3.3 for external ceilings
  • R1.3 for external floors
These ratings refer to the entire construction of the walls and ceilings, from outside cladding to inside lining. In most cases, the effect of the other materials mean that a higher rating of your new home insulation material must be used to compensate for the lower values of these materials.

The main issues to consider with new house insulation:

  • Choose a quality material suitable for the purpose.
  • Upgrade. The NZ building code was revised from 2008 and insulation ratings (called R values) required were significantly improved. The new codes now give a reasonably high level of protection. Upgrading further can still be worthwhile if your budget allows.
  • Installing. Provided you have selected a quality product, it is the installing of it that will enable it to work effectively or not. Traditionally, apprentices using pre-cut product (usually known by the brand name of one of the main manufacturers) did the work. While many builders and housing companies use insulation installed by supply and install companies or installing labourers, the use of pre-cut insulation is still normal industry practice. This less than desirable method creates a number of issues when installing that must be carefully overcome to be effective.
  • Lack of interest. New house insulation is usually at the bottom of the priority list. It is not a glamour product – rarely, if ever, seen again once the house is completed. While ineffective insulation may make a home unpleasant it won’t usually cause a dramatic crisis like the ‘leaky home’ scandal of recent years and as it is hidden away it won’t be glaringly obvious like poor quality kitchens or bathrooms. Councils and builders worry that they may be held liable if a building leaks, but poor new home insulation work is usually difficult to discover and prove, hence inspectors do only a cursory perusal of the insulation before lining and many lack understanding of what issues constitute a poor job.

Photo Gallery

View some of our work below.
And here is some of our competitors' work.
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