Reviving Existing Buildings: EPS Insulation’s Leading Role in Energy Efficiency Retrofitting

Retrofitting existing buildings for improved energy efficiency has become a pressing need in today’s world. As we shift our focus toward sustainability and environmental responsibility, there’s an increasing demand for solutions that not only reduce energy consumption and fossil fuel consumption but also minimize the carbon footprint of existing buildings. 

Among the many solutions available, expanded polystyrene (EPS) insulation (and its upgraded graphite-enhanced counterpart, GPS) stands out as a versatile and highly effective choice for retrofit projects.  

Let R-Shield insulation help you transform existing buildings into more sustainable and energy-efficient buildings.

Reviving Old Buildings 01


The Significance of Retrofitting for Energy Efficiency

Retrofitting involves upgrading older buildings to meet contemporary energy efficiency standards. This practice plays a pivotal role in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, conserving energy resources, and elevating the comfort of building occupants.

Frequently, aging structures often need more insulation to maintain a consistent indoor temperature, resulting in higher energy bills and an undue burden on the environment. Retrofitting is the solution that rectifies these issues, transforming buildings into more sustainable and economically efficient structures.

There is new payback for building owners who embrace their building upgrades and choose highly energy-efficient materials like R-Shield insulation. 

The federal government, states, cities, and many utilities throughout North America offer large tax incentives for choosing retrofit systems that deliver high energy efficiency. See what’s available in your area — it can be thousands of dollars in payback.

The United States has also embraced the need for upgrading existing buildings. The Federal Building Performance Standard requires government agencies to cut energy use and achieve zero emissions in 30% of Federal government-owned building space by 2030.


EPS Insulation: A Game Changer for Retrofit Projects

Reviving Old Buildings 02

EPS insulation has earned its reputation as a transformative force for retrofit projects. It is a proven solution for a variety of insulation applications, and here’s why:

Unmatched Thermal Performance

When retrofitting older buildings, thermal performance is paramount. EPS insulation stands head and shoulders above other options with its exceptional ability to create a formidable thermal barrier.  

This barrier dramatically reduces the transfer of heat, which translates into substantial savings on heating and cooling costs, making it a financially savvy choice for building owners. Learn more about the role of thermal stability in building performance here.

Superior Versatility

EPS is the only rigid insulation code-approved and suitable for any application on a building. 

From below the building’s foundation in “below grade” settings to surrounding the perimeter of a foundation, below the floor, the walls, and the roof, EPS has the strength, physical characteristics, thermal properties, and long-term guarantee to offer one option for any insulation need. 

Efficient Moisture Management

Retrofitting projects often involve addressing moisture infiltration issues that can lead to structural damage and decreased energy efficiency. 

EPS insulation excels in moisture management, hindering the growth of mold and mildew while preserving its insulating properties even in wet conditions. This feature not only contributes to enhanced energy efficiency but also extends the lifespan of the building. View EPS water absorption facts to learn more.

Seamless Installation

Retrofit projects are as diverse as the buildings themselves, and EPS insulation’s adaptability shines in this context. Often, buildings are occupied in these situations, and the thermal upgrade has to be done quickly to not disrupt occupants. 

Whether it’s Nailbase and continuous insulation for walls and re-roofs, or the utilization of EPS and GPS blocks for re-roofing applications, R-Shield insulation can be factory-manufactured in endless sizes, slopes, and physical strengths to meet the specific needs of the project.

Its lightweight nature and ease of handling facilitate a seamless installation process for any application.

Structural Strength and Durability

EPS insulation offers more than insulation alone. It strengthens the structural integrity of existing buildings while providing the desired thermal resistance; it is so strong that it’s used in Geofoam applications below freeways, bridges, and more.  

Reviving Old Buildings 03

This dual functionality ensures that retrofitting with EPS insulation is not just an investment in energy efficiency but also a reinforcement of the building’s long-term performance

It is so strong and stable that Premier Building Systems guarantees the thermal stability of R-Shield insulation for 50 years.


EPS insulation stands as an eco-conscious choice. It’s recyclable and produced through processes that minimize environmental impact.  

Retrofitting with EPS contributes to a green future by reducing energy consumption and the demand for additional resources. Learn more through the new 2023 EPS Environmental Product Declaration published by the EPS Industry Alliance.

Enhanced Acoustic Comfort

Retrofitting isn’t solely about energy efficiency; it also encompasses improving the comfort of building occupants. EPS insulation excels here, too, by effectively reducing noise infiltration and creating a more serene and comfortable environment for occupants.


Why Choose EPS Insulation Over Other Options?

As we continue to prioritize sustainability and energy conservation, EPS insulation undoubtedly emerges as the top choice for retrofitting existing buildings, delivering unparalleled performance. 

Reviving Old Buildings 04

Among its competition, EPS insulation is the most versatile, with the highest R-value per dollar insulation available. It’s predictable, stable, customizable, and economical insulation suitable for every part of the building envelope. Together, these features contribute to a more environmentally responsible and energy-efficient future for our built environment. 

Contact our team today to talk about your next retrofit; we’re always here to help walk you through projects and applications.

Contact Our Team

Our team of insulation and construction experts is ready to assist with your project needs, estimate requests, and product information. Reach out to be connected with an R-Shield Representative in your area.

Contact Us