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Housing : March 2009
of glass,’ Bruce says. ‘In an insulating glass unit (IGU), which consists of two or more panels of glass sealed in an airtight cavity, the use of low-E glass will significantly limit the transfer of heat.’ Stegbar IGU uses state-of-the-art energy efficient glass which not only keeps homes more comfortable, but is also toughened for extra safety. Retrofitting insulation There are a number of things to look out for when actually retrofitting ceiling insulation, says Kristin Tomkins, HIA’s executive director of building policy. ‘When working in an existing ceiling there are a number of things worth considering to ensure both the insulation is effective and to ensure the safety of the installer and the homeowner,’ Kristin says. These include: • Take extreme care to ensure you don’t damage what’s already there and that you don’t create a problem for the future. • There is likely to be existing electrical wiring in the ceiling space. It’s important to check with an electrician if any adjustments need to be made to protect the wiring and to cover any existing down light fittings. • Every roof design is different. A basic pitched roof will be the easiest to retrofit, but there will be problems with the edges of the roof, where space get tight – this means it may not be possible to use the same size or type of insulation in these spaces. Cathedral ceilings, skillion roofs and other more detailed ceiling and roof designs may mean you need to lift the roofing and work from outside the roof, rather than inside. This may require council approval in some states and will have a variety of different safety requirements when working at heights. • Some homes have hot water storage tanks in the ceiling space, so again, it’s important to check with an electrician before potentially causing any problems. HOUSING MARCH 2009 Manufactured using a dual seal to provide an airtight cavity, and utilising a desiccant-filled spacer to prevent condensation inside the cavity, the Stegbar IGU is the ultimate energyefficient glazing solution, says Bruce. Following extensive technological development, Stegbar now uses offline coated low-E glass in its IGUs, as it was found to regulate a home’s temperature all year round – whether in balmy Queensland or the Victorian high country. Clearly then, insulation and the correct glazing will help to save on energy costs created by artificial heating and cooling. But when artificial measures are required, Elgas says its gas log fire or convection heater is the ultimate lifestyle choice for creating a warm and cosy environment. According to Elgas, the warmth produced by gas heating is a fast, efficient, and environmentally-friendly form of heating, and compared to an electric radiator heater can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by around 80 per cent. And the environmental credentials of gas are supported by federal and state governments and many local councils who offer a variety of rebates and incentives to reward environmentally-friendly choices made by householders. Elgas also claims the backing of AGL, one of the largest buying groups in the industry, ensuring buyers get access to a wide range of leading brand appliances Above: Stegbar IGU uses state-of-the-art energy efficient glass. at the best prices. Supporting the long list of dedicated Elgas centres is a strong network of more than 250 retail partners. As well, Elgas’ EasyGas service offers state-of-the-art tanker delivery, manages individual LPG volumes, and schedules regular deliveries to suit individual needs. According to Elgas, LPG is fast becoming the fuel of choice as it is widely available and provides a range of benefits throughout a home. Effective warmth is assured through the speed and effectiveness of a convection heater or log fire heating in the home. Elgas offers expert advice to both tradesmen and manufacturers on heating with LPG and choosing the right appliance. H For more information: Air-Cell – www.air-cell.com.au or 1300 247 235 Green Homes Australia – www.greenhomesaustralia.com.au or 1300 724 661 Stegbar – www.stegbar.com.au Elgas – www.elgas.com.au SoftPlan – www.cadbuild.com.au or 02 4657 1874 61 Image courtesy Stegbar