So we got the loft insulated for free…

Miss Thrifty9 April 4, 2012

We recently had our loft insulated for free by EDF Energy. Did you know about this scheme? I heard about it a while ago, but held back at first. This was partly because it sounded too good to be true – you don’t even have to be an EDF customer to take advantage of the deal – and also because I heard a rumour about a waiting list. As it turned out, I was wrong on both counts. It looks like the scheme may now be closed to new applicants – in which case, we must have squeezed in just in time – but keep your eye on this deal as next winter closes in, as I wouldn’t be surprised to see it running again…

Proper loft insulation reduces energy bills and carbon footprints. If your loft isn’t properly insulated, you can lose up to 25 per cent of your home’s heat through the roof. So if you can cut your energy bills with minimal effort and zero expenditure, what’s not to like?

As for our loft: there was insulation up there already, but it was old, skimpy and grubby:

poor loft insulation

Rubbish or what? Goodness knows how long ago it had been laid, but it wasn’t really working. Whenever it snowed, the heat in our house would rise and ours would be the first terrace in our row with a thawed-out roof. Our energy bills aren’t high, because I use price comparison websites and regularly chop and change so that we get the best deals. Even so, that thawed out roof was a reminder that more could be done to cut costs…

So here’s how I got the loft insulated for free. Like I said, it involved minimal effort on my part. Firstly, I filled out the form on the EDF website. A couple of weeks later, I received a letter confirming my application. An assessor came and did a loft survey. The survey was very quick, measurements were taken and our house was confirmed as eligible for free insulation.

An appointment for installation was made there and then. All we had to do in the meantime was to ensure that the loft was clear of all our junk treasured items. On the day, two chaps turned up punctually. They lugged the rolls of insulation up the stairs, laid them in the loft and were out the door again in the time it took to make and drink a cup of tea.

The loft looks rather different now:

EDF free loft insulation

For further details about the free loft insulation scheme, visit EDF’s website.

Ever the cynic, I asked around to find out why EDF was putting so much investment into the scheme. I was told that the Government has set energy efficiency targets for the energy companies, and that the financial penalty for missing these targets is greater than the cost of insulating people’s homes for free. (Caveat: I don’t know if this is true, but it is sufficiently bonkers to be plausible, isn’t it?) If the scheme does launch again, I’ll post a link to this post to remind you!

The next challenge: to find a thrifty way to board the newly-insulated loft, so that we can move all of our junk treasured items back up there. Apparently if we plonk them on the insulation and compress it, we will reduce its effectiveness. At the time of writing, there is snow on the Moors and the temperature is due to hit minus two tonight, so this is one challenge that needs completing sooner rather than later…

UPDATE, October 2012: For a list of energy suppliers offering this scheme in 2012 – along with all their bonus incentives! – see my latest post about free loft insulation

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9 Responses to “So we got the loft insulated for free…

Isabelle says:

We already have loft insulation but it’s worth mentioning that you can also get cavity wall insulation for free as well from quite a few companies. See Martin’s article here We had the wrong kind of brick walls unfortunately but the man who came round was nice and the process was easy as you say. British gas will even give you £50 if you recommend someone elderly or on certain benefits to get it.

Ooh and don’t know if this will help you but we have picked up trolleys of mdf/chipboard seconds from Ikea in the bargain corner for a couple of pounds. Might work for the loft?

April 5, 2012 at 9:03 am

Miss Thrifty says:

Ah yes, I should have mentioned – we were offered the free cavity wall insulation by EDF as well. I didn’t take it though. I’m too paranoid about the risk of potential damp issues.

Thanks for the idea re. IKEA – it could definitely be worth a go!

April 5, 2012 at 9:35 am

Loft insulation for free?! What madness! Sad to have missed out on this round. Our loft must be one of the most poorly insulated in Britain- it’s terrible and our energy bills are a testament to its shoddiness. We’ve put off any insulation plans, because we were hoping to do a loft conversion. That’s all fallen through now, so we’re on the look out for cheapy schemes to make us all round better people for the environment.

April 5, 2012 at 3:25 pm

WhiskyJoJo says:

Packs of specific loft boarding are available on a ‘bulk buy’ offer at Wickes – each large board (the equivalent in size to the prepacked boarding at B&Q for £9) comes to just over £6.50 if you buy at least 10. We are getting some of this once our free loft insulation is done! And we are getting the cavity wall because our neighbours had it years ago and they’ve had no problems.

April 6, 2012 at 11:05 am

Jellytotsrock says:

I’m with Sainsbury’s Energy, and have just agreed for a surveyor to come and inspect my house to see if it’s suitable for free loft and cavity insulation. I hadn’t seen this advertised, it was only during a conversation about my bill that the agent mentioned it – might be worth a look-see for your readers. The appointment isn’t until October 23 and I’ll obviously report back once I know more. Again, I’m a bit sceptical about the freeness of it all. I’ll let you know!

October 7, 2012 at 11:54 am

Rob says:

I`ve never heard of this being done! That`s a good idea, though. I hope this becomes a more widespread thing. Who knows how much energy is being wasted because of a poorly insulated home?

September 10, 2015 at 8:04 pm

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