Thermal insulation or solar power? Not if, but what first?


Clean energy, climate change, CO2 neutrality,… Just a few of many challenges we face these days. But what’s what and how do you go about making your home more sustainable?


Solar panels = clean energy

So much is sure. Solar panels use photovoltaic cells to transform light (not heat!) into energy. If you want to limit your CO2 footprint and want to render your home more sustainable, solar panels may prove to be the way to go. But aren’t we skipping some steps?


Thermal insulation = low energy demand

And this is crucial. Well insulated homes have a lower energy demand. Besides, energy that hasn’t been used, can’t be billed either. If you want to limit your energy bill, thermal insulation may be on top of your checklist. Only then can you render your remaining energy demand more sustainable by using green sources like solar panels.


Three steps to sustainable housing

  • Thermal insulation of the building envelope (think roofs, floors and walls) helps you minimize the energy demand of your home as much as possible. The credo goes as following: “The most sustainable energy is unused energy!” It will help you minimize your energy consumption (and your bills!)


Did you know how much energy gets lost in an uninsulated home?

  • Floors 10%
  • Walls 20%
  • Roofs 30%
  • Ventilation 20%
  • Cold bridges 5%
  • Windows 15%


It goes without saying that you’d be throwing your money away in an uninsulated home!

  • Living in a home with an insulated building envelope? Excellent! You have successfully lowered your energy demand. But what’s next? Step 2 on you sustainable home checklist is all about compensation. Lower your home’s CO2 footprint by compensating your remaining energy demand. How to compensate energy, you say? By using sustainable energy sources. Solar panels are the first solution that jumps to mind.


Are there more ways to sustainable energy solutions for your home? Absolutely! Any energy generated from sustainable sources, can be used. Think heat pumps, solar boilers, wind mills,…

  • So far so good. By now you will have significantly lowered your energy consumption by insulating you building envelope (Step 1) and using sustainable energy sources for the rest of you energy demand (step 2). In case you still have a remaining energy demand that can only be provided by fossil fuels (oil, gas or coal), try to use it as efficiently as possible! This is the third and last step toward sustainable homes. Try to install your heating sources as low as possible (under floor heating) and keeping your heat and water pipes as short as possible.


Is IKO enertherm insulation sustainable? Ofcourse!

  • Sustainable insulation

IKO enertherm insulation has a thermal insulation value, of λ0.022. Does that sound like Greek to you? No problem. That just means that IKO’s high performance thermal insulation boards have amongst te best insulation values on the market! This way, production of less material still guarantees excellently insulated homes. Now that’s sustainable!

  • Renewable raw materials

The use of renewable raw materials is significant.  PET bottles, for example, are recycled and used in the  PIR insulation production process.

  • No waste

In the IKO enertherm insulation production process, the cutting and sawing of waste is processed into briquettes, which are used as additives in concrete.

  • Spread of production sites

The IKO Insulations growth strategy includes the geographical spread of production sites. The shortened transport distances contribute to a significant improvement in the ecological footprint.