Thermal Insulation Of A New Construction: Which Material To Choose?

It is very important to insulate your house or building. A poorly insulated or uninsulated house could suffer many consequences. What is thermal insulation? How to insulate a home? What material should I choose for the thermal insulation of a new construction?

What is the thermal insulation of a house?


Thermal insulation of a house or a building consists of creating an envelope around the house with insulating materials to reduce heat loss. This ensures a comfortable and pleasant temperature for the occupants of the house. Thus, an insulated house keeps the heat inside in winter and the coolness in summer.

A well-insulated house consumes less energy and saves a lot of money on energy bills. This technique reduces the house’s energy needs and greenhouse gas emissions. Today, there are very strict regulations for new construction. All the important points of the house, i.e., walls, roofs, windows, doors, etc., must be taken care of to ensure a high level of thermal insulation, as the roofing specialists know so well.

Good thermal insulation means 80% savings!

Thermal insulation concerns the roof, the walls, and the floor. It consists of reducing the famous “thermal bridges”, those junction points where the insulation is not continuous and causes heat loss. Manufacturers offer many types of insulation: mineral (glass or rock wool, cellular glass, expanded clay), natural (cork, wood fibers, sheep wool, coconut fibers…), synthetic (expanded polystyrene, extruded or polyurethane foam), or brick, pumice, vacuum insulation panels (VIP). The number one objective is to reduce your energy bill while enjoying a pleasant room temperature.

What material to choose for the thermal insulation of a new construction?

For the thermal insulation of a house, many insulating materials can be used. These materials are classified into different categories, namely

    • Mineral insulation: glass wool or rock wool; cellular glass; perlite, vermiculite
    • Natural insulators: hemp, wood fiber, sheep’s wool, duck feathers, flax, etc.
    • Synthetic insulation: polystyrene, polyurethane
    • Recycled insulation: cellulose wadding or recycled textile
    • New generation insulation: cellular concrete, insulating panels such as Ecap Nano or monomer

All these different materials can be used for the insulation of new construction. Indeed, the materials are chosen according to the part to be insulated. For example, not all insulating materials are suitable for the thermal insulation of a thatched roof.

Thus, for the thermal insulation of walls, it is preferable to use the following insulating materials: cellular glass, rock wool, glass wool, polystyrene, thin insulating materials, wood fibers, hemp, flax fibers, cellulose wadding, PIV, “monomur” brick, sheep wool.

For the ceiling, the following materials are more suitable: perlite, glass wool, duck feathers, sheep’s wool, polyurethane, and polystyrene. For the roof and attic, perlite, rock wool, glass wool, vermiculite, polystyrene, thin insulation, wood fiber, hemp, flax fiber, duck feathers, cellulose wadding, and sheep’s wool can be used. It is recommended to make a roof window in the roof to benefit from daylight.

The different thermal insulation techniques


There are generally three techniques of thermal insulation to know:

  • Thermal insulation from the outside: this technique consists of insulating the house or building from the outside by covering the roof and the facades. Also, it is necessary to think of protecting the roof of your house with a good quality roof covering
  • Thermal insulation from the inside: this technique consists of placing the insulating material against the interior walls of the building and in the attic. This technique is much more used for renovations
  • The distributed thermal insulation consists of using the insulating material to build the walls. It is the technique that is more suitable for new construction. The materials best suited to this technique are insulating bricks or blocks of insulating breeze blocks.

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What Is an Energy-Saving House?


– What is an energy-saving house?

– Objectives of the energy-saving house

– Price of an energy-saving house

– Example of an energy-saving house: the passive house

An energy-saving house is environmentally friendly.

It consumes less energy and uses renewable energies that will sustainably balance your energy needs with the planet’s resources.

What is an energy-saving house?

The energy-saving house is an ecological house that must respect our environment.

Therefore, it will pollute as little as possible and reduce your energy needs as much as possible.

– To achieve this, you will take particular care in your home’s design (materials used) and its installations (water and heating).

– The energy-saving house can be ecological, green, bioclimatic, or even autonomous.

Objectives of the energy-saving house

The main objectives of the energy-saving house are to:

– reduce heating costs as much as possible by choosing a better orientation of the house;

– take special care to save energy through insulation;

– produce electricity (solar or wind power);

– saving water through rainwater recuperation or low-flow systems;

– managing waste as well as possible, such as selective sorting or composting.

Price of an energy-saving house

Compared to a conventional home, the energy-saving house represents an additional cost of 10 to 15%. However, this cost is amortized after a few years from the savings made on heating and electricity.

Example of an energy-saving house: the passive house

PassivHaus is a German label for energy performance in buildings. In the USA, the PHIUS+ association is responsible for certifying passive houses: these must meet the same criteria as those described by the PassivHaus label.

The passive house’s primary function is to reduce the energy input for heating, ventilation, and lighting through highly efficient building techniques.

It is, therefore, an environmentally friendly and energy-efficient home. Its location in the environment will therefore be of prime importance, both climatically and geographically.

Its low energy consumption is based on:

– the use of the passive heat of the sun;

– reinforced thermal insulation (walls, windows, etc.);

– not having thermal bridges, i.e. gaps in the insulation through which heat can escape;

– air-tightness and double-flow ventilation with heat recovery;

– the fitting of energy-saving appliances listed according to energy class.

Its advantages

The passive house has many benefits:

– The house does not need more than 15 kWh per m² per year for heating;

– its total primary energy consumption (heating, water, and appliances) must not exceed 120 kWh/m²/year;

– it also has excellent air-tightness.

It is essential to comply with specific standards to obtain the “passive house” label,

The house must be designed and optimized well in advance of construction to comply with the PassivHaus standard requirements. Two main techniques will enable you to meet the consumption targets set by this standard:


The energy losses of a Passive House can be significantly reduced, particularly by strengthening the insulation by using triple glazing. A heat recovery unit like a dual-flow CMV (controlled mechanical ventilation) system, must be installed to supply fresh air. The objective is to achieve ventilation energy less than or equal to 0.4 Wh/m3 of supply air.

Bioclimatic Architecture

Bioclimatic architecture is a technique used to increase solar gain received through the windows and bays and the south-facing aspect of the living room. The passive building also conserves the waste heat from electrical appliances.

A building of this type has far fewer humidity problems, ages better, offers greater comfort through a balance of temperatures while reducing energy costs and CO2 emissions. A fair calculation at all levels!

Furthermore, the incentive for building owners and developers has been introduced at the town planning level. You can read more on Passive House: An Ecological Concept.

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