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Flat Roof Insulation: Ultimate Guide

Just like any other insulation, flat roof insulation is designed to keep your home feeling temperate at all times throughout the year. And just like a pitched roof, a flat roof needs a layer of insulation between the exterior and interior to ensure the sun’s rays and the winter weather don’t come straight through. 

Any home featuring a flat roof can benefit from multiple types of insulation. However, some are better than others, which we’ll detail for you below. 

Flat Roof Insulation

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How do you insulate a flat roof?

Any insulation you choose will go under the flat roof, whether the roof already exists or not. A good layer of this protection inside the home will help your house to work as a well oiled system, and can help keep your home both warm and cool whenever you need it.

It’ll also ensure your energy bills are kept in line with your budget, which is crucial during the months when temperatures hit the extremes. 

As a homeowner, it’s entirely up to you. However, there are various insulation regulations you’ll have to keep in mind throughout the process. And when it comes too insulating a flat roof, you have a little less wiggle room than you would with more traditional roofing shapes. 
As such, it’s a good idea to look up building insulation regulations before you start work on a job like this. You can also talk to a contractor who is experienced in flat roof insulation methods, like us here at Spray Foam Tech. 

How thick should flat roof insulation be?

The thickness of roof insulation, whether you’re working with a flat roof or not, is all dependent on the determining U-Values. With a roof that isn’t insulated at all, this number stands at 2 W/m2k (watts per metre square), on average. 
But adding insulation can trim down that lost wattage to around 0.20 W/m2k. Less heat goes flying out the top of your home and you don’t have to suffer the financial consequences either. 
However, the shape of the roof can greatly differ the thickness of the insulation you’ll need. As such, the flat roof insulation thickness building regulation in the UK dictates that the insulation layer should be between 100mm and 150mm. 

What is the best way to insulate a flat roof?

Insulating a flat roof can be a difficult project. If you’re fitting insulation in after the roof has already been constructed, some portion of the roof, rafters, loft, or upper floor will need to be removed and/or ‘peeled back’ to allow for insulating materials to be added.
Plus, whether your roof is of the ‘warm deck’ or ‘cold deck’ variety may add to the workload and project time. 
To minimise the damage of such a project, it’s best to work with an experienced flat roof insulation company. You’ll need a team that knows the best materials to work with, seeing as you’ll need upwards of 100mm of insulation for a flat roof.
Indeed, the contractors will have to work with thin materials that can fill the space no matter how awkward it is. 

Which insulation is best for a flat roof?

Flat roofs need insulation in order to protect the rooms below, but not all insulation materials can be used here. Insulation boards, for example, can often be too thick for a project like this. But other materials, like spray foam, can be just right for the job. 
Flat roof spray foam insulation is one of the best methods to try here. A flat roof can be squeezed for space, in both new and old builds, and a thin layer of insulation that can still do the job is required. 
Spray foam can fill the space in a more cohesive and neat layer, and doesn’t not need to be built up or packed in. This makes it a much easier (and cost effective) addition to any and all flat roof homes. 

How to insulate an existing flat roof

If you’ve already got a flat roof on your home and aren’t simply planning to add one later, the job can be finicky to try. However, flat roof insulation is still a great choice for protecting your home. Before you undergo any work on an existing roof, be sure to read up on the rules surrounding insulation in homes. 
In the UK, flat roof insulation regulations can be very strict, and take into account ventilation and the maximum U-Value any home can reach. As noted above, it’s best to do research into the building regulations in your area before adding any insulation materials to your roof.
Be sure to get in touch with experts who know what they’re doing; a flat roof insulation job is a next to impossible DIY project. 

How to insulate a flat roof from the inside

Any spray foam used for insulation when tackling an existing roof can be easily added to the interior building without much cause for health concerns. However, whilst a flat roof can be insulated from the inside, it’s important to be careful about the ventilation of any materials that are added. 
Adding insulation in the wrong areas, or adding too much, can lead to the development of a ‘warm roof’. And this is a very easy mistake to make when concerning a flat roof.  

How much does flat roof insulation cost?

To insulate a flat roof, the cost can vary, as do many insulation jobs throughout homes in the UK.
However, the type of property your home is will play a bigger factor alongside the overall square footage.
Before giving an estimate, it is important to arrange a pre-installation survey with a qualified installer to assess the area that needs insulation. To arrange one with Spray Foam Tech
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