Balcony roof insulation: selection and installation of modern thermal insulation materials

It’s essential to insulate your balcony roof if you want to keep your house comfortable and energy-efficient. In addition to saving energy expenses, contemporary thermal insulation materials are essential for keeping your balcony area cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Whether you’re installing a new roof or remodeling an old one, selecting the appropriate insulation material is crucial.

There are many different kinds of thermal insulation materials available today, and each has benefits of its own. It can be overwhelming to choose from so many options, ranging from more avant-garde options like rigid foam boards and spray foam to more conventional options like fiberglass and mineral wool. The ideal material for your balcony roof will vary depending on your climate, your spending limit, and the particular needs of your roof system.

Many homeowners can attempt installing thermal insulation on their balcony roofs as a do-it-yourself project. Make sure you have the necessary supplies and tools on hand before starting. In addition to increasing the insulation’s effectiveness, proper installation lengthens the life of your roof. Improved comfort and energy savings are the results of taking the time to plan and prepare your installation.

This guide will discuss the various kinds of thermal insulation materials that are appropriate for balcony roofs, as well as their advantages and useful installation advice. Knowing your options will help you design a comfortable and sustainable balcony area, whether you’re starting a new building project or just want to upgrade your insulation for greater energy efficiency.

Insulation Material Key Features
Polyurethane Foam Provides excellent thermal insulation, lightweight, and easy to apply.
Extruded Polystyrene (XPS) Water-resistant, high compressive strength, effective in humid conditions.
Mineral Wool Good fire resistance, sound insulation, and environmentally friendly.

Why insulate the roof of the balcony even?

The balcony’s roof needs to be insulated, primarily to prevent freezing and the buildup of condensation within. However, opting for a local repair will also yield additional benefits.

We immediately reserve the right to assume that only dependent type roofs—those with glazing, for example—need insulation; however, an unauthorized balcony does not require this, as its temperature is street level and its sides do not differ from one another. Additionally, since the sounds of the rain will mix with the street rather than remain isolated, such a roof does not require noise insulation.

Reason No. 1. Condition of heat

It is imperative that you warm the roof and yourself if you have installed glazing. Remember that this heat won’t last long enough to allow you to enjoy comfortable wintertime balcony time in Russia.

Ultimately, the house’s exterior walls aren’t sufficiently isolated to maintain a comfortable temperature. However, summer and autumn will work to create a pleasant microclimate in the spring. Additionally, this will be sufficient for a home gym or a place of relaxation and exercise.

Furthermore, the roof—especially the metal ones—is inherently cold, making it easy for pairs to form on it. These drops then cascade down and produce an unpleasant dampness. Steam can quickly enter the balcony by simply opening the living room doors. In addition, in order to stop condensate from forming, the owners of the unscarried balcony must instantly open the street window sash.

Reason No. 2. Avoiding ice on the roof

Regretfully, instances have even arisen where the apartment’s owner was held accountable for something falling from their balcony and hitting someone’s head, even if it was just icicles. And they simply spread out where the air temperature in a room with an undamaged roof is higher than that of a street.

Consequently, the snow cap continually taps, builds up ice crystals, and hangs from the cornice. Furthermore, it is your responsibility as the apartment’s owner to make sure that no icicles grow on your roof. In severe circumstances, you may need to continuously knock them down or find a substitute for the flower grinder in the form of a cable. Despite the fact that the basic insulation of the balcony roof ultimately determines everything.

Reason No. 3. Protection from the heat

Few people are aware that, on hot summer days when the roof can reach +60–70 °C and an uncomfortable hot air pocket forms inside, thermal insulation of the roof is also essential for preserving a healthy microclimate on the balcony.

And the fundamental goal of any insulation is to build a layer between two areas of differing temperatures and prevent, or at least greatly slow, heat transmission through it.

T.e. The insulated roof will shield the balcony’s interior from the heat in the summer and the cold in the winter. If you have never insulated your roof before, trust me when I say that after the first summer you will notice the difference and be happy you thought of it.

Reason No. 4. Noise insulation

There is more soundproofing in another insulated roof, so when it rains, the noise level will be entirely different. To attain 100% sound insulation, extra materials are used during the insulation stage—more on this later.

Reason No. 5. The possibility of full -fledged finish

Lastly, it is not possible to complete the balcony’s trim without insulation. The truth is that without a layer of insulation between it and the metal roof, even a wooden lining will freeze. Furthermore, the air quality here is not the best.

In addition, the waterproofing covering the insulation will absorb the initial water streams in the event that the balcony’s roof is damaged by hail or an item inadvertently falling on it. Additionally, disassembling the roof, replacing any damaged parts, and reinstalling the finish will suffice.

To put it succinctly, the first issues will affect insulation and moisture protection rather than the balcony’s walls and floor right away. Economically speaking, it is far more profitable.

We examine the choice and installation of contemporary thermal insulation materials in our guide to insulating balconies. Learn how selecting the appropriate insulation can improve comfort and energy efficiency in your house, along with helpful installation advice that’s accessible to anyone interested in do-it-yourself projects."

Vapor barrier and waterproofing of the balcony roof

The process of insulating a balcony roof is essentially the same as insulating a full-fledged roof thermally. Additionally, the insulation in this area is crucial for preventing sporadic leaks from above and steam from below. Naturally, everything is dependent upon the substance employed.

Penophol, for instance, has vapor and hydro barrier shells. Nevertheless, mineral wool needs to be shielded from all sides, and polystyrene foam should only be used on top to provide waterproofing:

As previously stated, should you decide to continue using mineral wool, you will also need to install a vapor barrier inside the balcony and a waterproofing film on the roofing side:

All of the insulation films used to safeguard the thermal insulation of the balcony roof are installed in the same way as the regular roof of the house; the only exceptions are the highest quality films, which have unique requirements.

What heaters are suitable for the roof of the balcony?

High environmental friendliness and nearly zero hygroscopicity are prerequisites for the balcony’s insulation. This particular property is significant because rainwater frequently enters the balcony through the roof’s cracks, which inevitably develop over time. And the damp insulation starts to lose its qualities right away, starts to deteriorate, and even starts to grow mold.

Environmental friendliness is also crucial since, during the summer, the top floor balcony’s roof always gets heated, and it’s best if dangerous materials don’t end up in the air. All of the specifications and features here are the same as those that apply to the home attic insulation materials.

Additionally, there are three types of roofing heaters: leaf, roller, and shapeless.

Sheet materials: polystyrene and polyurethane foam

Using polystyrene and foam foam as an example, let’s begin by insulating the balcony roof with leaf materials. They come in a variety of forms and are all appropriate, but the Knauf Therm’s white polystyrene foam is particularly well-made. Although it is manufactured using multiple technologies, its structure is similar to that of Soviet foam.

This kind of insulation makes the balcony particularly quiet and warm. He’s so fearless that he’s even linked to the apartment’s living room without turning on any additional heat, which is actually forbidden on the balcony (even on a warm film floor!).

If you’re interested, it’s all about the newly discovered issues with an apartment building’s heating. However, because there is no loss of dampness or cold when warming the balcony’s walls and roof with contemporary polystyrene foam, you can connect the balcony and apartment:

Only mineral wool in two layers, sealed from below with panels of extruded polystyrene foams in orange or gray, can be used as an alternative to Knauf Therm. Appropriate, is that not true?

Use our guidelines to apply modern polystyrene foam insulation to the balcony roof:

  • Step 1. Make measurements of the balcony in advance and purchase the right number of sheets, be sure to take another reserve.
  • Step 2. If there is already a crate, then cut the sheets in the size of a step of the crate so that they become between the bars. And if there are no crate, it will most likely have to do it.
  • Step 3. Fix the sheets with pucks screws.

Put polystyrene foam in between the bars as a result:

Additionally, as an alternative, the master class inserts the polystyrene foams between the metal holders rather than the crate’s bars. After that, it’s crucial to completely seal off any gaps between the plates and trim off any extra foam once it dries.

If you use less expensive foam, you can insulate them with the balcony roof, but only after decorating and making sure everything is completely tight. The material will, in fact, come into contact with the balcony’s hot roof during the summer and absorb some of the heat. Additionally, there’s a risk that the room’s cracks will allow poisonous air to enter.

Yes, he might not poison anyone in the household for a day, two, or even a month, but he will undoubtedly cause harm. It is even possible to inhale cheap plastic furniture, street exhaust gas, and poor-quality wallpaper in a room prior to breathing foam. This phenomenon is known as a cumulative correlation.

T.To. hazardous substances in the air come from multiple sources, and their cumulative effect causes health issues in individuals. It makes sense that environmental friendliness is now a trend in everything.

The same technology used to insulate the balcony roof with foam also applies to polystyrene foam:

However, the foam works flawlessly as insulation from the balcony’s exterior roof:

Lastly, using leaf mineral wool to insulate the balcony’s roof from the inside and out is practical: additionally:

With the exception of mineral wool, most sheet insulation for balconies comes with a vapor barrier layer already installed; you can apply the finish right away. However, if you plan to frequently drink tea on the balcony, where steam will escape, adding an additional layer of vapor barrier won’t hurt at all.

Fessile materials: Ecowata and polyurethane foam

So-called shapeless materials are a good rival to polystyrene foam and its equivalents. We use blended ecovata, the well-known polyurethane foam, and, as an exception, mineral wool (which is made in rolls and plates and can be readily inserted into the appropriate roof cavities).

PPU is also ideal for dependable insulation of a metal roof. When this insulation is sprayed, two liquid components are combined, and when heat and oxygen are introduced, they react chemically to form foam, which hardens rapidly.

Thus, silent thermal insulation is produced instantly when polyurethane foam is applied to the roof’s and farms’ surfaces. Furthermore, all foam spray cans, whether they are produced domestically or in the West, are manufactured using the same technology. The foam should only be concealed from UV light at that point because it will eventually disintegrate.

Among all the analogs, we can claim that this heater is among the most efficient. In addition, polyurethane foam itself is safe for both the environment and humans, despite not being composed of natural materials. Its thermal conductivity coefficient is 0.022 W/m*K*. PPU is lightweight and completely resilient to temperature fluctuations, ranging from -50 to +180 degrees Celsius. Additionally, PPU is impervious to microbes, rot, and mold, even in environments that are consistently damp.

Rolled materials: Penofol and Minvat

The ease with which they can be pressed into the proper corners and compressed characterizes modern mineral wools. They are simple to break apart and cram into awkward places:

Just keep in mind that even when warming shapeless mineral wool—which is highly water-absorbing—vapor barriers below and waterproofing above are still necessary to prevent dampness.

Should you choose to obliterate the windows on the balcony’s sides, for example, or if we are referring exclusively to the loggia, the first layer of cotton insulation needs to be lowered to the floor, matching the walls. However, the second layer of insulation needs to run perpendicular to the window’s upper edge and pass through the ceiling and into the wall on the other side.

Use wooden racks, which are conveniently fastened directly to the crate, to secure cotton wool. Indeed, the cotton heater needs to be further reinforced along the whole balcony with thin wooden racks to prevent it from falling out. It is currently kept in a poor condition.

Apply a vapor barrier film to the bottom layer to help shield the insulation from condensation from the balcony’s interior. The balcony ceiling’s decorative finish is completed as the final step:

Give preference to the foam if you want to install PVC and make the balcony as warm as possible. Since this insulation is silver-colored rolled insulation with a reflective side, it is very simple to install.

Because it has the dual benefits of being steam, hydro, sound, and thermal insulation, this insulation is perfect for balconies. It will be possible to use tea and coffee grounds on such a balcony without worrying about being harmed by water vapor. Furthermore, this is an especially practical material to install because it’s simple to cut and fasten to the ceiling. Penophol is also benign to the environment.

It is sufficient to secure the foam insulation to a wooden crate covered in foil using a construction stapler. This will insulate the balcony’s roof. And a balcony like that will produce the intended thermos effect:

It is convenient to fix any kind of finish on the penofol, incidentally, without any exceptions:

Combined insulation: achieving the maximum effect

Warming the balcony roof simultaneously with various materials is also very practical and convenient, combining the benefits of each. Usually, a roll layer of another insulation is placed on top of the cotton or polystyrene foam insulation that is used to insulate such a roof. This is a fantastic example:

In addition, if you use two different types of insulation, one layer of each will be sufficient; if there is only one roll of insulation, it is laid in two rows.

Last but not least, after the insulation is installed, the balcony’s cracks must be carefully sealed; otherwise, the insulation will be useless.

Modern thermal insulation for your balcony roof can greatly improve your home’s comfort and energy efficiency. You can control indoor temperature and lower your annual heating and cooling expenses by selecting the appropriate insulation.

Take into account elements like the R-value, which gauges thermal resistance, when choosing insulation materials. Better insulation performance is indicated by higher R-values. Foam boards, mineral wool, and spray foam are common materials. Depending on your needs and budget, each material has a special advantage.

The efficiency of your insulation is greatly influenced by the installation process. Gaps should be properly sealed, and insulation should be applied continuously to prevent heat loss and moisture buildup, which over time can cause mold growth and structural damage. For safety and effectiveness, it is imperative to adhere to local building codes and manufacturer guidelines when replacing or insulating a balcony roof.

By lowering energy use, investing in high-quality insulation improves your home’s livability and supports environmental sustainability. By following these guidelines to insulate your balcony roof, you’ll not only increase the comfort level of your house but also benefit the environment and your pocketbook.

Video on the topic

Warming of the balcony and loggia instructions from Penopolex®

Insulation of the balcony or loggia with foam / insulation of the balcony without mold and condensate

How to prevent errors in the insulation of the loggia.

PIR insulation. TOP-5 disadvantages.

Which insulation is better for home? How much is the insulation? Pros and cons of insulation

What do you think, which element is the most important for a reliable and durable roof?
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Alexandra Fedorova

Journalist, author of articles on construction and repair. I will help you understand the complex issues related to the choice and installation of the roof.

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