Isolate attic stairs against heat exhaust and air passage

To isolate an attic staircase, two approaches are possible, an attached directly to the stairs insulation or a mounted Dämmrahmen. If direct isolation of the flap, frame and joints is possible, it should be chosen for greater effectiveness and avoidance of a second flap.

U-value of the overall construction

If a refurbishment of an attic staircase already installed is to be carried out, the structural conditions and the condition of the stairs also determine the most effective method of insulation. A least possible intervention is the mounting of a kind of "cover", which is placed from above on the stairs. However, this "lid" is at a disadvantage compared to direct isolation and can not achieve the same U-values.

Idealtypisch is a focal point of insulating a loft staircase and consists in the hatch or flap on which the stairs is mounted. Several factors influence the insulating effect:

  • Thickness of the hatch (depending on the material, but never less than three centimeters)
  • Type of material with low thermal conductivity
  • Insulation application such as polyurethane, styrofoam, rock wool or hemp fibers or
  • Already existing hatch or hatch

Pre-assembly and thermal bridges

Already before installing the attic stairs should be applied to the attic edges of the selected insulation materials such as an insulating film with vapor barrier. There must be enough room for moving and aligning the chuck box to be used. Overlapping the film several centimeters up and down prepares a later seamless connection to other insulating materials such as sealing tapes.

The aim of the insulation is to achieve complete airtightness of the attic stairs. It can only be achieved by complete lining or filling of the joints and cavities as well as the precise fit of the hatch in the frame.

An important aspect is the avoidance of so-called thermal bridges. They arise when components of the staircase come into direct contact with the floor slab. In addition to the insulation against heat transmission from bottom to top, this indirect channel of energy loss must be avoided. Therefore, the isolation means must always block any lateral contact.

Tips & Tricks

When insulating your attic stairs, you are simultaneously pursuing two goals. They minimize the heat flow throughout the construction and seal the joints completely and airtight. Check the efficiency independently.

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