It is not easy to determine which is thebest thermal insulator, everything varies from application needs and context. This is why we will see which are the best thermal insulation materials for the insulation of walls, floors, ceilings and other specific cases.
Every thermal insulator it is deemed more or less good based on various factors such as:
- thermal conductivity (insulating power)
- thermal displacement (the time it takes for heat to pass through the material)
- the vapor diffusion resistance (how breathable is it?)
- fire resistance (does the fire risk increase?)
- durability (is it resistant to mold and parasites?)
- the alleged toxicity or if it is a non-toxic material.
In addition to the factors just mentioned, it is necessary to say that not allthermal insulatorsthey are suitable for insulating any surface therefore abest thermal insulatorcan be specified according to the application: if it is to be used in cavities, on horizontal surfaces (thermal insulation for roofs or floors), on vertical surfaces (thermal insulation for walls, internal or external coat) or on oblique surfaces (sloping roof attic).
Depending on the type ofthermal insulatoryou have certain advantages. Obviously in choosing thethermal insulationit is necessary to consider the context and the final applications.
Best thermal insulator for external coat, ventilated facades, thermal bridges and cavities (attic and floors)
- polyester fiber
- EPS synthesized expanded polystyrene
- extruded polystyrene (XPS)
- expanded polyurethane
- expanded polyethylene
- synthetic insulation foams
The insulating materials listed above have the advantage of being economical (low purchase cost + ease of installation) and have a useful life ranging from 30 to 50 years with a progressive decrease in performance. Some types (XPS) can be resistant to water and humidity. Who is on the hunt for the best thermal insulatorfor attics, roofs, attics and various cavities, it can point to polyurethane foam or foams. For floors it is preferable to aim for panels of the same materials (insulating foam panels).
Thesynthetic thermal insulatorslisted above are not suitable forinsulate interior walls(inner coat).
Best natural insulator
After analyzing the uses of synthetic (man-made) insulation materials, let's move on to insulators of plant origin. They have the advantage of being recyclable and biodegradable, as opposed tothermal insulatorssynthetic, the natural ones do not release toxic emissions during installation, nor during the life of the product. For this reason, among these materials there is no shortage of thermal insulators for internal walls.
Best thermal insulator for external ventilated coats, internal coats, for ventilated roofs, inclined roofs, internal wall, for partitions of the house, false ceilings, sub-floors, attics ...
It is among the natural insulators that we find the best solutions for those who intend to insulate the internal walls, the floor and environments in close contact with the domestic ones.
Amongthermal insulatorsnatural of vegetable origin we mention:
- Wood fiber
- mineralized wood fiber
- cellulose fiber
- cellulose fiber in flakes
- hemp fiber
- flax fiber
- coconut fibers
THE natural insulating materials they are breathable and non-toxic. They offer good thermal insulation, are generally durable (resistant over time) but among the aspects to consider are the high costs.
Thethermal insulatorsnatural are, in general, more expensive than synthetic ones both for the purchase price, and because sometimes the installation is not so simple. For example, the laying of the cellulose fiber takes place through an blowing system.
Among the thermal insulators of vegetable origin, the most expensive is cork but it isbest thermal and acoustic insulationnatural. Natural thermal insulators work best when used in combination with each other: coconut fibers and jute, taken individually, do not offer a good degree of insulation but when used coupled with other materials they can assist in the insulating value.
Being non-toxic, they are recommended when it comes toinner coatyou hateinsulate the internal wallsof the House. They are recommended for thermal insulation of floors, for false ceilings and in all situations where the material is in direct contact with the home environment.
Between natural island materials there are those of animal origin such as sheep's wool or insulators of mineral origin such as glass wool, rock wool, expanded clay, expanded perlite, expanded vermiculite and felts. The insulating materials just mentioned can be used for internal and external coats, ventilated facades, ventilated roofs, partition walls, false ceilings, sub-floors and floors.
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