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Here you will find the latest articles written by our team focusing on insulation solutions, product developments, and technical guidance.

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Latest articles written by our team


This post aims to cover what a vapour control layer is, why it’s important and when it’s applicable to roof and floor applications.

Today, we are talking about another vital construction component called a vapour control layer, or a VCL.

At Saint-Gobain Insulation UK and within our bustling Technical Support Centre, our advisors are regularly asked questions relating to the VCL. What is it? What does it do? Am I using it the right way? With this in mind, our technical advisors have put together a VCL focussed FAQ post.

What is a vapour control layer (VCL)?

A vapour control layer helps you protect your building from the consequences of condensation. Condensation is formed when warm moist air penetrates the building fabric and then condenses into a liquid on contact with the colder surfaces outside the insulation layer. The idea behind a vapour control layer is to install it on the room (i.e. warm) side of the insulation so it blocks the passage of warm moist air entering the structure.

Why is a VCL important?

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What is PAS 2030 and how does it apply to the Green Homes Grant?

Publicly Available Specification (PAS) 2030:2017 describes how energy efficiency measures in dwellings should be specified, installed and commissioned. It forms part of a network of standards and quality assurance measures intended to deliver high quality retrofit work.

The Green Homes Grant scheme requires that installers are certified to PAS 2030 to ensure the delivery of high quality of work throughout the industry. However, the scheme was launched at a time when the retrofit sector was moving from PAS 2030:2017 to PAS 2030:2019. A temporary transition policy has been announced by BEIS (the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy).

Essentially, Green Homes Grant work may be carried out under either Specification, apart from in certain defined instances where both PAS 2035 and PAS 2030:2019 must be used.

How does TrustMark registration fit with PAS 2030?

The Green Homes Grant scheme has created a surge of interest in domestic retrofit. To minimise the risks of poor quality work being carried out, the government has sought to incorporate quality management into the scheme and as such all businesses must be registered with TrustMark which requires a commitment to customer service, technical competence and trading practices.

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The government has launched its new £2bn Green Homes Grant scheme. Through the scheme, eligible homeowners will be able to apply to help pay for the installation of energy efficiency measures such as thermal insulation, as well as new boilers, double glazing, draught-proofing and solutions such as air-source and ground-source heat pumps.

What is the Green Homes Grant?

The Green Homes Grant is part of a broader £3bn investment plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions across the country. It will help homeowners pay for home improvements that will boost energy efficiency whilst reducing energy bills and contributing to the UK’s target of net-zero emissions by 2050.

Up to 600,000 eligible homeowners will be able to apply for vouchers worth up to £5,000. These will cover up to two-thirds of the cost of the upgrades, with homeowners paying the balance. For some of the country’s lowest-income households, vouchers up to £10,000 may be available which could cover up to 100% of the cost up to the £10,000 voucher limit, with the remaining balance payable by the homeowner.

Depending on the home and the works carried out, it is estimated that the improvements could save households up to £600 a year in energy costs.

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The £2bn Green Homes Grant scheme is a government-funded voucher scheme that helps homeowners pay for the cost of installing thermal insulation and other energy-efficiency measures in their homes.

As part of a broader £3bn investment plan by the government, the scheme was launched to improve the energy efficiency of the UK’s housing stock, contributing towards the goal of net-zero emissions by 2050. Its launch, amid the economic downturn caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, is hoped to give a boost to the economy, particularly the construction sector.

For contractors, the Green Homes Grant could be a welcome source of new work – but you’ll have to act quickly to ensure you are approved to carry out installations under the scheme.

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