Concrete slab edge insulation is one of my hot topics. It seems to spark debate, firstly about if it’s worth doing, then secondly about how to do it. I recently spoke with manufacturer and experienced business owner, Mike Peters of Fort Wayne, Indiana who’s come up with an easy solution for builders to cut heat loss at the slab edge by up to 88%.
Mike Peters is a successful manufacturer, problem solver and business owner. Before turning his attention to making concrete slabs better, his most recent previous niche was solving the problem of supplying good quality, moulded dashboard assemblies for the marine industry. This may seem completely unrelated, but there some important similarities. Mike has uncovered a problem, and along with creator and business partner Tony Hicks, found a solution, then set to work in order to get a good quality product into the market.
I’m excited that someone like Mike and Tony are on the task of helping to cut heat loss.
The Slab Edge Heat Loss Problem
The issue of cutting heat loss at the slab edge is something I’ve covered a number of times already (and probably will continue to do so). My description of concrete slab heat loss is my most popular YouTube video and I updated an article on slab edge insulation in August 2014.
Put simply, concrete is a poor insulator. Therefore concrete floor slabs will loose heat wherever they’re not insulated. While heat loss through the floor represents only a small proportion of the potential total heat loss from the whole house (maybe around 10%), 80% of that heat loss will occur around the edges of the slab.
Having warm feet is important for keeping dry, comfortable and healthy, not to mention preventing wasting money on excess heating.
The main problem for designers and builders is how to insulate the slab edge easily and effectively in a way that’s going to be robust. The slab edge of any house is generally a pretty exposed area, having to stand up to all sorts of gardening tools and lawnmowers as well as constant wetting and drying.
Features of Insul Slab
Key features that Mike has addressed are:
- Code compliance with 2012 IECC code R402.2.9 (for zones 4 & 5)
- Tough vinyl liner to protect the external surface
- Ease of installation
- Pier channels and cavities built in for structural attachment of the house frame to the slab
- Pre-moulded internal and external corners
For more information, check out the detailed and easy-to-read, 8 page Insul Slab Installation Guide.
Do you need slab edge insulation?
Unsure if slab edge insulation is right for you? If in doubt, I’d recommend including it.
Feel free to contact me for specific help with your design. I can do a quick check to identify if your future home, renovation or extension will benefit from slab edge insulation.