The Approved Documents Approved documents are detailed publications which come under the English Building RegulationsThese are the mass of regulations that cover safety, health, welfare, convenience, energy efficiency etc. in the way buildings are constructed. Not to be confused with Planning consent (which is more to do with whether you can put up the building in the first place). They are based on tried and tested methods of building and if you follow them you are assured of complying with the Regs. The equivalents for Scotland are the Technical HandbookUnder the Scottish Building Regulations, the Technical Handbook gives construction principles, which, if you follow them guarantee compliance with the Regulations, for Wales: the Approved documents (Wales), and for N.I. the Technical BookletsUnder the Northern Ireland Building Regulations, the Technical Booklets give construction principles, which, if you follow them guarantee compliance with the Regulations Approved documents are detailed publications which come under the English Building RegulationsThese are the mass of regulations that cover safety, health, welfare, convenience, energy efficiency etc. in the way buildings are constructed. Not to be confused with Planning consentthe legal basis for being allowed to do some form of development such as building a house. (not to be confused with Building Regulations which are all about whether the building is properly constructed). see more on Planning (which is more to do with whether you can put up the building […]
Traditionally, domestic hot water has simply been a choice between a combi boiler or a vented system (with the odd Point of Use water heater thrown in).
With water saving design, and zero carbonbit of a slippery fish. It tends to mean that a building uses no carbon (oil, coal, etc) to heat it (meaning […]
Emitters tend to be of two types – traditional radiators and underfloor heating. It’s a bit of a toss-up as to which is better. They have their respective advantages and drawbacks.
a pleasanter heat because it is better distributed no wall space taken up by radiators possibly more efficient because of lower […]
see also Emitters (radiators etc.) Gas boilers Heating controls
It is reckoned that in the UK, housing is responsible for about 25% of greenhouse gas emissions. Poor heating can render parts of dwellings virtually unusable, partly through discomfort due to cold and drafts and partly through the damage caused to contents through condensation, dampness, mould […]
Existing houses present a much greater challenge than new ones in terms of energy saving. However in terms of reusing building materials they often provide better opportunities.
Patrick and Fiona run a very pleasant bed and breakfast near Nelson, Caerphilly and their house has been the subject of much renovation and extension over the […]
In the UK there is plenty of heat energy to be harvested; it just doesn’t all come at the right time. Ideally you save all the surplus heat that comes along and then use it when there is a shortage.
Winter / summer balance
At one extreme is the interseasonal heat store such as was […]
High thermal massthis is about how much heat something can absorb - so it involves its specific heat capacity and its volume. It can be useful for levelling out the peaks and troughs of temperature within a house. See the page on
thermal mass is generally seen as a useful quality in a building because it can be utilised to trap and save any spare heat which might turn up.
It can also do the reverse equivalent for coolth during hot weather. This quality is utilised in passive solar design, including the PassivhausSee more […]
Plumbing for solar collectors is normally carried out by specialist companies when they retrofit systems to existing buildings.
The challenge with solar collectors is to do with working out pipe runs that go from the collector outside and through the roof to the inside space where there is a tank to […]