What is the difference between a warm loft and a cold loft?

Posted 18/12/17

If you have a typical house with a sloping roof, or have the top flat in a block and are responsible for the loft space and roof above, you can either choose to have a warm loft or a cold loft:

A warm loft is where you insulate immediately under the roof, which means your loft space is warm as well.

A cold loft is where you insulate immediately above the ceiling of the top storey, so no heat from your home gets into your loft. For ventilation purposes, and to avoid condensation forming, ventilation  is left usually around the perimeter of the roof (soffit vents), at the ridge or using tile vents.

Warm roof solutions are generally more costly to achieve because the sloping area to be treated is greater, but they provide a greater level of heat retention…


By equalising the temperatures within the building envelope, convective air movement is greatly reduced. Also, you can more easily use the loft to store temperature-sensitive items, as a 'cold roof' can get very hot in the summer and damp in the winter.

Where possible we will as standard give a flash coating of foam to the rafter faces, which will reduce cold-bridging. If the space is to be lined, then we can either trim to the rafter faces or to increase the performance even further we suggest using a brander…this serves 3 purposes…the ability to straighten out wonky rafters, to deal with the cold bridging and provide a regularly spaced fixing for the plasterboard/linings.

Is my house suitable?

In an existing dormer or 1.5 storey home Icynene can be easily fitted to the difficult to insulate areas such as crawl spaces and closed sloping attic sections using our unique cannon tip application method and in areas totally inaccessible Icynene can be injected through the plasterboard. Call us to arrange a site visit, as all buildings are unique! leave us your project details on our Contact page and we'll be in touch.

As an option, Icynene can also be fitted on the horizontal attic floor…but remember the cold part of the roof will still have to be ventilated, and any ventilation will introduce cold air to the building.

ICYNENE® open cell and closed cell spray foam insulation products. Ideal for homes and commercial buildings - insulate and air seal in one step. Our spray foam insulation is guaranteed to perform as specified for the life of your home or commercial building. 


ICYNENE® open cell and closed cell spray foam insulation products both insulate and air seal homes and commercial buildings in one step.


ICYNENE® spray foam insulation provides an air barrier and helps protect against the introduction of pollutants, dust, mould, carbon monoxide, and pollen.


ICYNENE® has a global warming index of 1 – the lowest in its class. Making a healthy environment for the buildings occupants.


The ICYNENE® insulation system is the most accredited insulation available with worldwide acknowledgement of its exceptional performance.

Watch our videos and find out how Kishorn Insulations can improve your home.

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