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Question How do I improve insulation?

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Hello everyone, I recently purchased a steel framed house in Hertfordshire and am finding it difficult understand how the ventilation works. Essentially I'm looking to remove the compressed straw like internal wall blocks and replace them with modern (probably Kingspan) material. I can only see one external air vent (see picture) and no internal vents at all other than the open wall cavity in the loft. 

My question is, can remove all internal blocks and replace without compromising the steel frame? The house is believed to a Trusteel 3M Mark 2 constructed during the 1960s. Are there any articles where others have done the same thing? What is the best approach to get the best results? 


Many thanks to anyone who can provide answers. 



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1 Answer

Hello David, and welcome.

The original design of the Trusteel 5M incorporated Mineral wool blanket insulation, approx 1½" thick in the cavity. It was no thicker than this, as the cavity must be kept open and free ventilating, to prevent condensation forming of the steel stanchions.
I must also point out that there are asbestos panels within the cavity, so any work here should proceed with caution.

As for the straw block panels, I suspect these may be a type of laminated plasterboard or pressed panels similar to the image below, taken from a Trusteel MKII house.

Can you confirm if there is any similarity please David, or provide an image if possible? 

trusteel Steel Frame cavity

Here's a image of a typical wall diagram which may assist you further, but as with all Trusteel & 5M properties, there were a range of variations that were used between builds.

5M steel framed house wall diagram

I do have some further information that I could send to your registered email address. Just let me know if that's ok and I will forward it to you directly.