Only an authorised Green Deal Installer can install energy efficiency improvements under the Green Deal finance mechanism. To qualify as an authorised installer, you must be certified by a Green Deal accredited certification body meeting the PAS 2030 standard for the measures you wish to install. Adrian JG Marsh joined an internal wall insulation training course at Barnsley College to find out more.
“If you want to pass the course you’ll have to stay a little bit longer,” was the ominous warning from Dale Greenwell, head of the plastering and drylining section at Barnsley College, South Yorkshire.
“Why is it important?” asks Dale. “Because there are 6.6 million solid wall homes in the UK and the aim is to reduce carbon emissions significantly. The aim of the course is to get trained and certified in the installation of the Kingspan Kooltherm IWI system.”
Barnsley College has teamed up with Kingspan Insulation to provide a hands-on one day course to train existing drywall contractors or plasterers how to install the Kingspan Kooltherm internal wall insulation systems and help them (contractors) access Green Deal or Energy Company Obligation (ECO) work.
Kingspan started its IWI training courses in January and more than 150 tradesmen have attended courses at Barnsley College and at Able Skills in Dartford, Kent.
Installers need to work to PAS 2030:2012 (publicly available specification) for the installation of energy efficiency measures in existing buildings and internal wall insulation (IWI) is one of 26 trades covered by the PAS standard.
Kingspan is committed to policing installation standards and will come out and check the quality of the installation. And if an installation check does not meet with approval then contractors and tradesmen could have their cards withdrawn and prevent them working on any Green Deal funded contracts.
Peter Morgan from Kingspan Insulation said: “We’re playing our part to help deliver a qualified and competent workforce. Without a qualified installer card a contract won’t qualify for a guarantee; which could mean it won’t receive any funding. Using Kingspan Kooltherm internal wall insulation systems, trainees learn the best practice approach to dealing with everyday refurbishment installation issues, and gain an understanding of why installations have to be completed in a certain way.
As Dale Greenwell said: “It’s about keeping the heat in and the cold out. Thermal bridging is one of the biggest mistakes installers make. The insulated Kooltherm needs to be installed on all exterior walls and by 400mm along the return of non exterior walls. This prevents cold bridging.
“Attention to detail is very important. With refurbishments voids behind walls are a common problem and can cause installations to fail. Setting out carefully helps to avoid bending and curving and, whether it’s dot and dab or applying to battens or metal framing systems, boards have to be sealed to ensure the finish is smooth and square and airtight.”
As the day progresses the trainees (all qualified and established plasterers or dryliners) gain confidence and ask questions about internal wall insulation. What also become clear is that planning really does prevent problems.
The training also helps installers to comply with the Green Deal code of practice, and most importantly meets the PAS 2030 ‘evidence of product or system supplier approval’.
Martin Loonan, from Rend-Right Ltd in south Wales, said: “It’s essential to come on the course to become an approved installer of IWI. Without it you don’t get the guarantee. We’ve been doing more EWI and IWI over recent years and there’s a lot of housing refurbishment work taking place in our area, especially with councils and housing associations. Internal work is more difficult because you’re working in someone’s house. You have to leave it looking as if you’ve never been there.”
The course criteria are stiff but Kingspan is committed to deliver on its promises, which is no tall order. To work on Green Deal contracts an installation contractor and a proportion of their operatives must be properly qualified. Powerful stuff indeed!
For a contractor to achieve PAS 2030 it is necessary to have one of the following:
- Relevant qualifications/qualification units and on-site inspection of work e.g. NVQ Level 2 Insulation and Building Treatments: Internal Wall Insulation
- Completion of other aligned training and certification accepted by the oversight body and on-site inspection of work
- Member of a Building Regulations Competent Person Scheme for the type of work (not applicable in Scotland)
- Demonstrable knowledge in relation to the competence gained through industry experience and verified by UKAS accredited certification body through a structured interview and on-site inspection of work e.g. an experienced worker practical assessment
- PLUS Evidence of product or system supplier surveyor approval eg. The Kingspan Kooltherm Internal Wall Insulation (IWI) Systems Training Course.
To find out more or to book a place on a Kingspan Kooltherm IWI course call: Either Barnsley College, Barnsley on 01226 216 836 or Able Skills, Dartford, on 0808 100 3245. Later this year courses will also be available in Scotland and Wales. Alternatively visit www.kingspaninsulation.co.uk/iwitraining