Topped up your loft insulation? What about the old inefficient loft hatch?
Replacing an old loft hatch must be done correctly. No point modifying an old push up hatch by reversing it, putting hinges on and a catch without adequate draft seals, insulation and locking points.
In some cases it can't be helped as you may want to preserve the look of the ceiling by keeping to traditional wood or finish to match the rest of the house. Although, when done correctly it will be a little more expensive than a new purpose build loft hatch.
In most cases, it's not necessary to do this and it's far more cost effective and makes more sense to install a brand new, draft sealed British Standards approved hinged door hatch and frame.
Most of us at some point or another had our insulation updated to the government recommended level of 270mm.
This will make a vast difference to your energy bills over the years. In some cases, you can get green deal grants to have this installed for free, but even if you are not eligible for free insulation, it doesn't cost a fortune to buy your own or have installed professionally.
The one thing we do forget to upgrade is the loft hatch.
Old loft hatches have gaps and they don't seal shut properly, whistle to you on windy days and are pretty much useless to climb through to enable you to fit a ladder or use your loft for storage.
It's important to consider having a brand new, latest specification, draft proof loft hatch installed if you're considering using your loft for storage, as it may need to be done just to get a ladder in.
Hand made or reversing the door (Like picture above shows) to convert an old hatch is not recommended, as this will not reach building regulation specifications and is not fully reliable at draft excluding or being energy efficient.
Professionally Installed Loft Hatch Replacement or DIY?
Professionally installed, as it can be a pretty big and physically demanding job depending on the age of your property and location of the hatch. You could say the older your house, the more difficult and expensive it can become.
But it's still affordable! You can get a brand new enlarged loft opening and loft hatch professionally installed from only £90 on average, so it is always worth considering.
The Manthorpe GL250 loft hatch that we use has been independently tested by the BRE to BS EN 13141-1:2004, and easily surpasses the requirements for air leakage which are outlined in the current building standards. (Certification is available).
The revolutionary design of the multi-point catch mechanism, means that the GL250 door can maintain a more effective air tight seal around the entire accessible opening, helping to meet the air leakage requirements of Part L of the Building Regulations and preventing the problem of moist warm air entering.
Many drop down hatches suffer from ‘sagging’ over time. A problem that can cause the middle of the door to bow away from the door seal, creating an air leakage path. To prevent this issue, the GL250 door has 12 independent catch points located around the perimeter of the frame, operated from a single position with a unique sliding mechanism.
With the sliding cover replacing a conventional twist action locking mechanism on the door, all of the hinge, catch and fixing geometry has been carefully located outside of the door seal, meaning that there are no holes through the door that could pose an air leakage risk.
When the cover is located in the fully closed position, it also completely conceals the hinge detail. The positioning of the doors pivot point is intended to maximise the accessible area available to the user when the door is open, and the pioneering hinge design allows for it to be fully removed from the frame quickly and easily, for simpler installation and better access with larger insulation options.
The fixings for the frame also screw directly up into the ceiling for easier installation, also providing pressure in the optimum direction for the frame to ceiling seal.
The back of the door panel has been optimised to increase the amount of space available for insulation, allowing the 50mm of expanded polystyrene to cover a greater area within the structural opening to create a better thermal barrier.
Our expertly trained installers can do most hatch replacements within a day or less, without too much fuss or inconvenience to you and your home.
DIY on the other hand! Well, you would need to be very competent to take on this job and you must have good knowledge of general building work to understand what you can cut away and what needs to be strengthened.
Cut away the wrong thing and it could weaken your ceiling, which may then collapse if walked upon. If you are not a 5 star DIYer, I wouldn't tackle this job yourself, let the experts do it.
Call our central enquiry number for the NorthWest area on 01254 370073
More news here