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Published: 2021-06-21 | Updated: 2022-05-13

What is thermal bridging and why you should avoid it?

Thermal bridges, also known as heat bridges or cold bridges, are areas on the building envelope where heat escapes to the outside particularly quickly.

They arise:
1. by the geometry of the building itself, e.g. at building corners
2. when building materials with different thermal conductivity meet, e.g. at windows
3. by subsequent installations on the (insulated) façade, such as awnings, letterboxes, lamps, etc. The disruption of the insulation can cause increased heat transmission and there is a risk of heat loss and a thermal bridge at the attachment point.

Since a thermal bridge on the building or windows can be overcome by structural measures such as insulation or insulating windows, we focus here on avoiding thermal bridges at attachment points on the external façade:

Negative effects of thermal bridges

1. Increased heating costs

woman calculating the cost which she can save by using the right insulation fixings for her house

In order to compensate for the heat loss and maintain the interior temperature, more heating is required and costs increase. If moisture enters the façade due to insufficient sealing at the fixing point, the heat loss and energy consumption increases significantly, because water has a 25x higher thermal conductivity than air. If the heat loss accumulates at several points, your electricity and heating bills can increase drastically.

2. Mould and health risk

mouldy wall which resulted of the increased heat movement by not using insulation fixings

As a result of the increased heat movement, the cold penetrates to the inner surface of the wall, causing cold spots on the walls and a low surface temperature. Since cold air can bind less water, the relative humidity rises to the point of condensation. Damp and cold walls and an increased risk of mould growth are the results. Microorganisms such as mould and bacteria can then impair room hygiene and personal health.

3. Reduced living comfort and air draught

Woman on the couch covered by a blanket in front of her laptop with a cup of tea besides her.

Cool surfaces at home reduce comfort and well-being and the thermal air movement between warm and cold air layers gives the feeling of a draught. A constant draught and cooler temperatures can lead to colds or sore throats.

4. Safety hazard and building damage

If the fixing point on the façade is not optimally sealed, condensation of moisture and the entry of rainwater can also cause damage to the outer façade. Rusting fastening parts can pose a safety risk and the penetration of cold or moisture can lead to structural damage in the long term.

We have the solution!

CELO's insulation plugs and screws are specially developed for external insulation, reliably ensure thermal separation, thus preventing the formation of heat bridges in the first place. Our product solutions made of high-quality, weather- and UV-resistant nylon are not thermally conductive and offer durable corrosion protection through the use of stainless steel and zinc flake coating. In addition, almost all products have an integrated sealing ring so that they optimally seal the façade. This keeps the insulation intact and your heating bill, health and building structure will thank you.

To find out more about insulation fixings, why you should use them and how they can help you please view our page on innovative insulation fixings. If you already know what kind of fixings you are looking for then please search our full range of insulation fixings with the link below.