In the last few years, there has been a tendency to fit Down Light Cones over downlights. When installing Cellulose Insulation in your homes. In our opinion, this is a danger to many home owner’s homes and lives.
When we install Roof Insulation products in homes we always cut small breathing holes in the insulation for the heat of the downlight to dissipate. It is necessary that all downlights in the home have breathing holes.
In fact, even in homes with LED downlights, it is still important to cut breathing holes. In the event, the home is sold and the new owner decides to install the 40-watt downlight that will reach temperatures of up to 270degrees C. This can then become a serious fire hazard for the homeowners.
Why Do Down Light covers Cause Danger?
These covers fitted over the downlights to prevent the insulation from burning can, in fact, cause the covers to burn. How this happens is the hear released from the downlights is trapped by plastic covers or metal covers. This causes heat build-up under the light covers as well as inside the light covers. This heat build-up can eventually cause the plastic covers to burn. This, in turn, could cause a problem in the roof space and ultimately end up in flames.
Well, then one would think metal cones are better. This is Absolutely not the case. The fact is these covers are lying on the electrical wiring. As these cones heat up the potential for the cone to melt into the electrical wiring is very high. When the cones absorb enough heat they can and will melt into the plastic covering the wiring. This, in turn, will cause a short circuit in the wiring and cause the wire to burn back to the DB box. Fortunately, most homes are fitted with earth leakage switch. In most cases, these should trip the lights. However, if this does not happen you have a big problem.
Down Light Cones For Cellulose Insulation
All cellulose Paper Insulation will need something to protect the finely shredded paper insulation from potentially burning in the roof space. For this reason, cones are fitted separating the insulation from the downlight.
In the last few years, many homeowners are wanting to remove this pumped in cellulose fiber insulation from the roof space. In most cases, it is because of water damage that homeowners want the paper insulation removed. As we know the paper will absorb water that will eventually end up in expensive ceiling damage and or collapse.
What we have found in many cases is that the Cones fitted around the downlights have either burnt badly over time. The frightening thing, however, is as the burning has started the cellulose has flooded into to cone causing a potentially catastrophic situation in the home.
Cellulose is manufactured with up to a 25% chemical compound. As these chemicals dissipate over time and the cellulose paper insulation loses its fire retardancy the potential for damaging fire in the roof is a real possibility. And the fact that cellulose smolders it can become a big problem
Not All Roof Insulation Needs DownLight Cones
In fact, all roll form Roof Insulation Products do not require down light cones of any sort as these insulation types can have a breathing hole cut through the insulation.
This is safer as the Roll Form Roof Insulation products do not shift with the wind in the roof space. In fact, this type of insulation is cut slightly wider than the beams and fits snugly sealing off all heat and cold.
Isotherm Roof Insulation
Isotherm Roof Insulation is an eco-friendly polyester type Roof Insulation. This insulation is dust free and allergy free. In fact, Isotherm Roof Insulation will outlast the lifespan of most homes. In fact, because this insulation has no hazardous chemicals or added fire retardants it will never sustain a flame. Isotherm Roof Insulation does not require Down Light Cones as it is a roll form insulation.
Aerolite Roof Insulation
Aerolite Roof Insulation is also a roll form insulation. In fact, Aerolite Roof Insulation or Think Pink Aerolite as it was called years ago is still one of the most popular products on the market. Aerolite Roof Insulation has a class 1 fire rating. In fact, this insulation product will not burn. The 135mm Aerolite Roof Insulation is SANS compliant as per the new legislation. In fact, Aerolite Roof Insulation does also not need Down Light Cones.
Granric Roof Insulation
The Granric Roof Insulation is a glass wool Roof Insulation Product. The 135mm Granric Roof Insulation is SANS compliant as per the new legislation. In fact, the Granric Insulation will not burn with a class 1 fire rating. The Granric Thermal properties are great with the highest R-value in its class. And as Granric Roof Insulation is a roll type insulation it also does not require Down Light Cones.
What Are The Differences Between Roll Form Insulation and Cellulose?
As Roof Insulation, they are both very competent as insulation.
Our problem with cellulose is that the product is blown in and there is no set standard. Blowing insulation into the roof, unfortunately, does not give an accurate thickness. In fact, in some places where the wind has not affected the insulation, we find varying degrees of thickness. It is impossible to give the exact thickness when blowing the insulation. However, the biggest problem we find when we remove the insulation for roll form is that the fierce winds tend to affect the cellulose. Unfortunately, cellulose insulation absorbs water if there is a roof leak or a burst geyser. This can be costly as most of them end up with a ceiling collapse.
Roll Form Insulation, on the other hand, is cut slightly wider than the beams and is rolled out between beams. This means there is a tight snug fit and the Roof Insulation is evenly installed throughout the home. Roll form insulation does not absorb water so there will most likely be no ceiling collapse if a roof leak appears.