Matt: Please tell me about your business and the products and services it supplies.
Julie: Insul Fibre Insulation works with builders supplying, installing and delivering insulation products. We help builders by giving them the right information about insulation products for residential and commercial constructions. We stock a variety of products so they get the right product, for the right application.
Sometimes a project requires four different insulation products. We can see from the specifications what is needed for each individual construction. We really wanted to make sure they were getting the right product so it works efficiently.
Denny and I have been doing product research, manufacturing and distributing insulation products for fifteen years now. We know these products like a builder knows how to build a great home.
We have the knowledge to make the project energy efficient and this way the builders have more time to concentrate on the construction. They only have to deal with one supplier to organise all the insulation products required, delivered to site or installed.
Matt: I see that it has been around for a while, since 1963. Is it a family business?
Julie: Insul Fibre has been around a long time, since 1963. Denny and I purchased the business in 2000. We have four children, and running a family business was definitely in our thoughts.
And we loved the Insul Fibre cellulose product as we had it in our own home. Our house is so warm in the winter and so much cooler in the summer. It works! We truly believe in the products which are efficient and environmentally friendly.
At one point we had all three of our boys working within the company, all in different areas of the business. Our oldest son Rick works in installations, and over the years he has gained a great deal of experience from installing, manufacturing, and delivering insulation to building sites. He is also involved in marketing and sales.
Julie: We probably do slightly more in the commercial sector and working with builders is our main focus ... But we do lots of residential homes too! (Our referrals are great and they are the reason we still install lots of private homes. If Insul Fibre insulation has previously installed for a family they will in most cases come back for us to insulate their next house.)
Our concentration is on builders and tradies working on both private and commercial constructions. Builders expect a guaranteed service and they are confidant that we are able to install insulation at their job sites on a specified date or deliver product on-site for the brickies or subcontractors to install. (The builders love booking jobs ahead knowing that they will be installed on their specified dates. Time is money!)
Builders are kept informed at every stage, all jobs are confirmed prior to delivery or installation. We make a phone call the day prior to installation just to confirm everyone is on schedule. On-site deliveries are confirmed as the product is being loaded for delivery to check that the product can be received, either by a supervisor or subcontractor on site.
Matt: I'd imagine that each insulation manufacturer/installer has different strengths and areas of specialization. Which are yours?
Julie: We are strong on information. In a nut shell, some constructions require a variety of insulation products, which can be confusing.
For example, ceiling insulation and wall insulation are vastly different in thickness and density. Wall insulation needs to be both thin and dense, sometimes requiring reflective properties. It must be thin enough to place between brick cavities or in between concrete tilt panels so you don’t forfeit floor space in commercial fit outs, and some jobs require a vapour barrier.
Ceiling insulation relies on the thickness or loft therefore it needs to be thicker and less dense. (Example include polyester batts and cellulose fibre.) Internal walls need to absorb sound and external walls requires a vapour barrier so they don't absorb moisture from condensation.
These different qualities and requirements can be confusing to many people. But we have the knowledge to clear that up.
Also, we specialize in energy efficiency, which is about combining building materials and insulation products that work together to get the best result. Architects are much more aware of energy efficiency in new buildings and the environmental factor also plays a part.
After fifteen years in the industry we have seen a lot of changes. There is more focus on energy efficiency in the construction industry than ever before. Our builders and architects rely on us for product information and advice on insulation systems that will compliment their construction. We guide them to new product that are available, and adhering to specified requirements and BCA regulations.
Julie: Foilboard Insulation Panel is great for many different constructions. The company is Melbourne based and it’s been around for two decades and is widely used around Australia. (The product website gives the best information on the variety of uses for the polystyrene board in both commercial and residential constructions.)
In Western Australia we do more double brick buildings and ones with concrete tilt panels. Foilboard is great for this application. The brickies will often use it for double brick cavity wall insulation. Being a ridged insulation panel it’s light weight and doesn’t sag and is easily pushed over the brick ties for easy installation.