How to insulate a balcony

Today’s balcony in many apartments turns into a full-fledged room, a functional space. This is especially true for small apartments, whose residents appreciate every centimeter. If the balcony is insulated, it becomes an office, a storage room, a resting place, a mini greenhouse, a dining room or an extra bed. There are many options for its use. The main thing is to do the work on its insulation with high quality. Only in this case it will be warm and cozy on the balcony..

Features and Benefits

In the warm season, the whole family can rest on the balcony, but when autumn comes, this room becomes useless. If you insulate it, the situation will change. The plus is that all the planned work is easy to do on your own. Additionally, a warm room is a space in which it is easy to create a small work area or sitting area. In addition, the presence of a warm balcony will automatically make the apartment cozier and warmer. You can attach a living room or kitchen to it, depending on its location. This will create extra space..

Before you start with insulation or glazing, you need to get expert advice. He will definitely tell you what kind of load a warm balcony can withstand, whether it is worth strengthening it. If the base is a strong concrete slab, the question of reinforcement does not arise. But the metal parapet must be reinforced with foam blocks or lightweight bricks made of ceramic material. The same should be done in the case of a fragile fastening of a reinforced concrete base..

Double-glazed windows in wooden frames can be used for insulation. They are environmentally friendly, allow windows to “breathe”, but are expensive. Aluminum windows insulated with polyamide inlays increase the thermal insulation of the room. The most optimal would be the equipment of PVC windows with double glazing, which will reliably retain heat..

Such windows are cheaper than wooden ones, but at the same time their thermal insulation is not inferior to aluminum ones..

What materials are better to choose

For finishing balconies or loggias today there are many varieties of finishing materials, with the help of which they give even the smallest room an original and attractive look. The main thing is to make the right choice of material for finishing. For insulation, experts recommend using cork, plastic panels, lining with a wooden or plastic base, drywall, plaster, MDF panels, decorative stone, aluminum profile, penoplex, expanded polystyrene, penofol.

Mineral wool, styrofoam finishing is an excellent solution for self-warming a room.

In the case of a non-insulated balcony, it is better to give preference to artificial stone, plastic frost-resistant lining, cork panels or tiles. The following materials are most often used for finishing:

Drywall

  • This material is distinguished by the fact that there are no toxic substances in its basis, it is easy to process and is combined with other finishing materials in design. Drywall can be plastered, painted, wallpapered, sheathed with panels and clapboard. With the help of such a versatile material, it is enough to simply turn the balcony into a full-fledged living room..

PVC panels

  • A practical solution, but it is better not to use this material if the constant temperature on the balcony is below five degrees. This problem can be solved with the help of frost-resistant panels, developed using new technologies. This material is not afraid of moisture, but it is able to quickly lose color from direct sunlight. This point should be taken into account if the room is located on the south side. Advantages: low cost, quick and easy installation with glue.

Cork panels

  • They create coziness that cannot be organized using other finishing materials. Cork panels are pressed bark of cork oak. Cork panels are easy to install and are suitable for any type of balcony, regardless of the room temperature. The cork panel does not absorb foreign odors, including the smell of tobacco. Lack of material – high price. For insulation, inexpensive penoplex is also used, mineral wool is also perfect..

How to properly insulate a balcony with your own hands: step by step instructions

A balcony in a city apartment is a special space. This piece of the house, taken out under the open sky, can become an office, a greenhouse or a resting corner, you just have to glaze and isolate it.

Do-it-yourself balcony insulation will save a lot of money. Sheathing in a panel house, in “Khrushchev” is done taking into account the characteristics of the apartment and the building.

  • Step 1. To begin with, the dismantling of old frames is carried out, the surface is prepared and things are taken out. Insulation from the inside is an important stage in the whole process..

  • Step 2. At the second stage, it is necessary to glaze the balcony. The best option would be plastic PVC windows. Many people prefer to keep the old wood frames. However, remember that even if wooden structures are in good condition, they will not be able to organize the same heat savings. There are cracks in the tree, so it makes no sense to do insulation in this situation..

  • Step 3. After the plastic windows are installed, you can start to warm the floor. Be prepared for the floor to get higher. Consider this if the ceiling in the room is low..

  • Step 4. Wall cladding is carried out after the installation of windows and floor insulation. The walls on the balcony are side walls, except for the main one. At the final stage of insulation, finishing works are carried out. The choice of materials depends on the budget. In the process of finishing, window slopes are installed overlooking the balcony.

Required tools and materials

  • In order to insulate a balcony or loggia, you will need the following tools: a hacksaw for metal or a clerical knife; roulette; level; pencil, marker or any other writing instrument; glue application tool – brush, spatula, and so on; other instruments. From the materials you need glue and the insulation itself. In addition, you will need a vapor barrier film and a windproof membrane..

You will also need a frame device. In this case, you will need wooden beams, as well as nails to secure them. You may also need special fasteners – nails with very wide heads. They are used when polystyrene is not attached with glue..

Insulation inside

  • High-quality thermal insulation combined with double glazing turns the balcony into a living space. It is necessary to insulate not only the walls, but also the floor with the ceiling. Insulation materials must be durable, lightweight, safe for humans. Due to precipitation and condensation, the walls of the balcony can become damp and moldy, which means that hydro and vapor barrier is needed.

Polystyrene foam meets these requirements as much as possible: traditional foam and Penoplex thermal insulation boards. The first is very lightweight, compressive strength, and waterproof. Penoplex is insulation made of extruded polystyrene foam. Its margin of safety and durability surpasses conventional foam, and its shape makes it easy to install in the grip and provides perfect insulation. Balcony cladding with slabs can be performed both inside and outside.

Insulation of a closed balcony begins with surface preparation. It is necessary to carefully cover the gaps and joints between the floor, walls and parapet with polyurethane foam without toluene in the composition. Metal structures need to be cleaned from rust, covered with oil paint and treated with a building antiseptic.

Before laying the insulation, they put windows and doors. Window sills and slopes are mounted at the last stage of work. The glazing of the balcony depends on the parapet. If this is just a metal crate, it needs to be built up with ceramic (lightweight) bricks or foam blocks. The thickness should not exceed ten centimeters. To protect the foam blocks, at the finishing stage they are covered with corrugated board.

Floor

Window structures can be installed on a reinforced concrete parapet immediately, using various assembly and sealing compounds. Reinforced-plastic windows have excellent characteristics, with skillful installation, they reliably protect the balcony and look aesthetically pleasing. When choosing a model, it is worth stopping at swing frames with double glazing.

Floor

  • In order to insulate the floor, you can resort to two different directions at once: to make it warm or to constantly warm it up. We are talking about installing a floor heating system, for example, an electric one. Installation of a water system on a balcony is very inconvenient and almost impossible, but installation of an electrical or film system is easy to carry out.

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It all starts with preparation. A waterproofing film is laid on the floor under the tiles, which protects the floor from moisture from the outside. Further, the crate is arranged. Instead of a lag, a bar is used, five centimeters thick. If you do not want to raise the floor too much in relation to the old coating, it is better to use a beam of low height. A square beam of 50 × 50 mm is perfect. The beams are laid every 40-60 cm.

To prevent moisture from entering the insulation from the inside, it is covered with a vapor barrier film. It is laid on top of the beams and attached to them with a construction stapler. For internal fastening, a fastening step of 50 cm is sufficient so as not to create unnecessary holes in the film. Polystyrene must be protected from moisture on all sides. Therefore, it is better to lay the film with an overlap on the walls. All gaps between the beams and walls should be sealed with the same insulation material or polyurethane foam..

Walls

  • Many do not insulate the walls, believing that from the side of the house the cold does not come to the balcony. In many ways it is, but the work needs to be done. The walls themselves are not sources of cold, but the joints between them and the side walls of the balcony can be. For this reason, the whole work can only consist in installing foam foam, which is vapor-tight and thin. It will protect the walls from icing and the penetration of condensate into the balcony..

  • Ceiling. If we are talking about a private house, then it is best to make a special roof structure. It is recommended to make a pitched roof, the slope of which is directed away from the house. The roof is made of rafters and lathing. A waterproofing film is attached on top of it. Roofing material is attached to the film, and the waterproofing is on top of the double-sided vapor barrier film, with the absorbent side inward. From the bottom, the rafters are hemmed with a vapor-permeable windproof membrane.

The floor slab, that is, the horizontal part, must have several layers at once: insulation; vapor barrier layer; load-bearing beams with interior decoration. The device begins with the installation of the frame, namely the rafter system. Next, a vapor barrier double-sided membrane is attached to it in the specified way. Then they arrange a crate and lay a waterproofing layer. You can use classic roofing material or special PVC films.

  • Insulation outside. In order to insulate the balcony from the outside on your own, skills are required. It is not easy to do quality work on your own, taking into account the characteristics of the building. Finishing outside means saving up to thirty percent on heating. Remember that outdoor work is fraught with some difficulties: if the balcony is above the second floor, then industrial climbers will have to be involved in the work..

Before starting the insulation, obtain the consent of the officials from the architecture department. The appearance of the balcony can spoil the overall picture, but if you finish in the same style as the entire building, then you can get permission. Outside insulation has a number of advantages:

  • the reinforced concrete slab remains warm, humid air from the room freely passes through it and is released into the atmosphere;
  • saving useful space;
  • you can install a layer of thermal insulation of any thickness, this will not affect the inner space of the balcony in any way.

The materials can be used the same as for interior work. Preference is given to sprayed thermal insulation as the lightest and most effective. Experts recommend using polystyrene or expanded polystyrene. Mineral wool is sensitive to moisture ingress, so its installation requires special care and accuracy..

An independent procedure for insulating a balcony is difficult. All stages must be performed at a high level, otherwise the room will not be completely isolated. A glass, panoramic, stained-glass balcony is an excellent solution for a small space. Designers advise to connect it to the room for expansion. A glazed balcony connected to the kitchen on the top floor is a luxurious solution.

In order to connect it to the room, you will need the help of professionals. Finishing the balcony, sheathing it from the outside is a laborious process, therefore it is recommended to first draw up a work plan, taking into account the cost of materials and outside assistance.

Interesting solutions in interior design

The balcony is an amazing place to be used right and wrong. A fully functioning balcony space becomes a resting place, an area of ​​complete relaxation or a work area.

If the balcony is not insulated, it is worth addressing this issue. As a result, you will get an additional room that can be used for work, study, rest..

  • The glazed balcony is a great place to relax. A cozy hammock, soft pillows will perfectly fit into a narrow loggia with limited space. If the balcony is small, this interior design is the best option..

  • Provence-style interiors are suitable for large balconies. White, turquoise, pale blue, milky, green are a great option for a restroom. Light shades visually expand the space and tune in a certain way.

  • A green corner is a great solution. Regardless of the size of the room, try to find a place on the balcony for an open shelving. Arrange seedlings or potted flowers there. If the space is large, designers advise turning it into a recreation area: wicker wooden furniture is perfect for this purpose..

  • An excellent solution is an office on the balcony. Clear lines, a combination of white, bright green and yellow shades, as well as wood and plastic set up for maximum productivity.

You can find out how to properly insulate a balcony or loggia with your own hands by watching our video.

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