With the latest discussion in The Sunday Times surrounding the havoc homeowners are dealing with due to their spray-foam insulation, Mosaic CSE’s CEO, Craig Young, shares his thoughts from an engineer’s perspective:
London housing stock was designed, and has survived, for around 150 years on some basic principles – most importantly, that the fabric of the building is allowed to get wet on the outside and breathe on the inside.
Modern building convention leads us to seal the building, and where this is achieved both internally and externally, problems are averted. Unfortunately, with the current drive to be thermally efficient, we are tending to retro-seal the inside whilst leaving the outside to get wet. And hence, causing structural problems for decades to come.
The answer to this problem is to consider the building as a whole and understand it is essential to treat it in its entirety. To keep signing off on buildings that will have a negative impact on the environment is reckless.