Ecowool insulation: blowing, pros and cons

Let’s talk about ecowool insulation using the blow-in method and describe the pros and cons of this material. Few people know that waste paper (newspapers, magazines, books) is used to preserve heat in homes. The paper material is crushed, covered with brown and boric acid, and the cellulose insulation (ecowool) is ready. When frame construction of houses became increasingly popular in European countries and the United States during a severe crisis, engineers in Germany were the first to produce very cheap insulation. And in the United States there was always the question of selling huge mountains of old newspapers.

First for shredding waste paper
manual labor was used, but gradually special machines were invented that greatly increased the quality and volume of cheap material for thermal insulation. In Russia, ecowool production also began during the crisis – in 1993. This is a lightweight building material that can be used instead of most popular thermal insulators.

сравнение эковаты и других материалов по теплопровоодности

Ecowool is applied using various methods: by hand, by blowing into the cavity and under the coating, and by spraying with a damp mass. The result is continuous thermal insulation without seams. Ecowool in rolls and mats is used only for flat surfaces, because in complex devices their use leaves gaps in the joints.

Advantages of ecowool

Ecowool insulation is safe for health. Its structure is approximately 80% wood or paper
and 10% boric acid and borax, which are natural antiseptics and fire retardants.

The thermal conductivity of ecowool is constant at humidity up to 24%. Due to this, a vapor barrier system is not required when constructing a ventilation gap and external cladding. The density of ecowool is in the range of 32–70 kg/sq.m. m. Thermal conductivity is no worse than that of the best mineral heat insulators – 0.036-0.041 W/m. In ecowool, the fibers are arranged randomly, and their structure binds water from the air.

типы и плотности сортов эковаты

Ecowool does not corrode metal surfaces, and when coated wet, it adheres well to any surface. With a thickness of 5 cm, it absorbs sound up to 65 dB. It insulates sound at a thickness of 15 cm in the same way as mineral wool with a thickness of 18 cm or 46 cm of foam concrete, 90 cm of expanded clay.

Houses made of frame, brick, wood, farm buildings, cinema and restaurant buildings – all of this is insulated with ecowool. When using traditional materials for non-residential areas in buildings, hydro- and vapor barrier against condensation formation is required. When using ecowool insulation, such operations are not required, because it absorbs moisture and quickly becomes dry.

Disadvantages of ecowool

Laboratory tests have shown that ecowool is highly flammable, burns moderately, and releases dangerous toxins when burned. However, during a fire, due to its insulating properties, it slows down the spread of fire, since the borax and boric acid in the composition prevent the fire from spreading.

тест эковаты на горение

In addition, these additives protect against rodents, mold, and bacteria.

стена из эковаты

Ecowool is not suitable for pouring foundations and cement-sand screeds due to its low compressive strength. And because of its looseness, ecowool shrinks a lot, for example, at a density of 50 kg/sq. m. up to 24%. Therefore, for vertical walls they use material with a density
about 65 kg/sq. m.

When sprayed with a wet-glue method onto an open surface, parts of the insulation fly apart. After drying, excess pieces are cut off to level the surface to the required size. As a result, a significant part of the ecowool is thrown away.

нанесение эковаты на стены каркасного дома

For health, it is preferable to use ecowool insulation without adding borax and boric acid, but then it will still be treated with fire-fighting agents, as well as against rodents and mold. In any case, it is better to entrust all work on building insulation to professionals.

Installation of ecowool

Special equipment allows you to deliver building materials to a height of up to 30 meters and a distance of up to 60 meters. For thermal insulation of floors and ceilings up to 20 sq. m. you can get by with dry backfilling by hand. For larger areas, equipment will be needed for blowing
. The choice of density and consumption depends on the design and location of the surface to be applied:

  • for attics, the thickness is 25 cm, density is 45 kg/sq. m.;
  • horizontal thickness – 15 cm, density – up to 40 kg/sq. m.;
  • for inclined surfaces, thickness – 15 cm, density – 60 kg/sq. m.;
  • vertically – 15 cm, density – 70 kg/sq. m.

Ecowool insulation is ideal for wooden houses. The quality depends on the raw material and production equipment. The presence of cardboard, coated paper, dust and debris in the raw materials is not allowed. Salts are dosed strictly according to the instructions.

плиты из эковаты для утепления

High-quality ecowool is a mass of long fibers made from newspapers with a slight presence of dust and dirt. Long fiber is obtained using modern equipment that grinds raw materials at low speeds, fluffing it up and not shortening it.

задувка эковаты через шланг

When blowing into vertical partitions, horizontal ribbed cut-offs are installed to reduce the load. Also, in order to avoid voids due to shrinkage, ecowools are taken 15% more than the initial weight calculations.

утепление эковатой перекрытий между этажами

To reduce shrinkage, rigid ecowool monolith is produced, adding waste paper during production to
binder polymer minerals. Or they produce thermal insulating blocks and slabs by adding sawdust or expanded perlite.