Insulating a pre-1919 stone built Scottish House, Esk Tower

Here is a Twitter thread I posted in January 2021 about insulating a Scottish stone house. There’s seemingly no knowledge in the industry or in government agencies about how to do this so we had to research and project manage it myself including most of the labour (lockdown and budgets ment we could hire one guy to help but not all the time). You can’t get grants or loans for self build projects. The Scottish government plan for mass home insulation (the only proven way to reduce household greenhouse emotions) is pretty much a failure from my experience. Anywhere here’s how..

See also Esk Tower – Retrofit Insulating a pre-1919 Scottish Stone Built House video (YouTube) and Keeping Stone Dry, a French Drain on pre-1919 Scottish House Esk Tower blog.

This is my tower. It’s an old engine room for a coal mine to pump water out the mine. But these days it’s a house. The walls are 1m thick. How do you keep a house like this warm?
Start by removing the plaster board and frame. I’m sure everwarm are lovely when working with modern builds (and not breaking lock down) but their suggestion to add an extra 5cm boards inside it would block air flow and remove space.
We found an old fire place. We scrubbed the walls with metal brushes and an industrial hoover. It took an age

In one of the rooms we found an old fire place

The we lifted some floor boards and put gutex wood fibre around the edge of the outside walls. Can’t find a pic so you’ll need to imagine it

Gutex thermofibre goes between the skeilings which are the 45° roof slopes. It’s wood fibre which feels a bit like wool insulation.
And the Gutex Multitherm to cover the coombs
Next it’s time for the @lime_products
plaster, it needs two coats and a mesh cut and pushed into the first. Plaster can be smoothed after but if you don’t then it looks more authentic like a French farm house.
Buy an oak mantel piece, fancy wallpaper and lining, some classic furniture and a real wool carpet, use decent underlay but be warned it’s slow to fit it in. Voila, tower room now insulated and looks good and stone work will remain solid for many more years.