Jeff Howell of the Telegraph has been ever vigilant in his campaign against cavity wall insulation and has just recently received a letter from Amber Rudd, who promised to review the workings of the cavity wall insulation (CWI) industry and implement changes. Howell reports that she has failed to do so and instead wrote a letter to the Telegraph, berating him for “failing to recognise that the vast majority of CWI installations (over 99 per cent) go ahead without any problems”.
There are, however, no official figures to back this claim up, as the Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency (CIGA) states only two in 1000 installations are affected by problems (around 12000 of the six million homes covered by CIGA), while the figure stated by Rudd would be equal to around 54000 homes that have experienced problems. There has been a lack of independent studies to validate either claim properly.
It is also the case that CWI defects may not be attributed to the insulation, as they often occur a few years later. They are never investigated and will thus go unreported as having any problems, even when the home is damp. Alternatively, there may be no physical signs of damp but the homeowner has not noticed any reductions in heating costs since the insulation has been installed, or their home may even be colder.
There are also those whose homes have become damp and they have reported this, only to be ignored completely, or told the damp is not the fault of the installer or CIGA. None of these complaints are registered and thus go unreported by CIGA and the government.
IRT Surveys Ltd has conducted a study of 250,000 UK homes, and has found that half of the cavity-walled homes it investigated have damp, slumped or missing insulation. If this figure is true for the rest of the properties that have CWI installed, it would be the case that 3 million homes are affected by cavity wall insulation problems. If all three million were to claim, CIGA could only give £6 to each guarantee holder.
Read the full article via The Daily Telegraph.