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 […]
Bringing existing houses up to a high standard of energy efficiency is a much greater challenge than with new ones.
This particular example of self build eco renovation is outstanding because of the way it will achieve a net zero carbonbit of a slippery fish. It tends to mean that a building uses no […]
This timber post and beamSubstantial, usually horizontal structural member. house in Aberfeldy pioneered “breathing construction” in the UK.
Designed by Gaia Architects and built in 1992 this well insulated passive solar house also has a wood burning stove and stack effect cooling for summer. The building materials used were chosen for being non-toxic and […]
Jim and Jo Monahan are nearing completion of their passive solar house in Spinningdale, Sutherland. This is a timber frame,self build project which utilizes roundwood for many of the structural members. This is a way of using timber at its maximum strength because it is not cut across the grain. The timber […]
This low energy, self build house is set on a hill overlooking the sea near Stonehaven. Its clean and simple lines echo the vernacular of the area although it is essentially a very modern building based on passive solar construction. The walls are double skin aerated concrete block with 300mm of insulation, […]
Evanton, October 2009
This self build, passive solar, larch clad timber frame house has recently been completed. It is highly glazed on the south elevation and has a concrete floor slab for thermal massthis is about how much heat something can absorb – so it involves its specific heat capacity and its volume. It […]
Aberfeldy, October 2009
This is a self build timber frame house of 76 sq,m. built in 2001. In terms of heating it benefits from its double storey[for the purposes of part B (fire) of the Approved Documents to the Building Regulations] this includes - (a) any gallery[for the purposes of part B of the Approved Documents] - A raised area or platform around the sides or at the back of a room which provides extra space. if its area is more than half that of the space into which it projects; and (b) a roof, unless it is accessible only for maintenance and repair.[for the purposes of part B (fire) of the Approved Documents to the Building Regulations] this includes – (a) any gallery[for the purposes of part BThe Approved documentsApproved documents (England) 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). See more on the regulations
. 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, (England) part B, deals with fire of the […]
Home of Alexander and Vinny Burnett, Kashentroch is an elegant and well designed open plan timber frame house in a beautiful setting close to the Dee. The original part of the house (with the pitched roof on the right of the picture), built about 5 years ago, has recently had an addition […]
Advantages of timber
Constructing with FSCForest Stewardship Council (who accredit timber) see their database timber (or another accreditation organisation such as PEFCProgramme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification. See their web site) is potentially one of the greenest ways of building for several reasons.
Timber itself captures and locks up CO² as […]
Designed by architect Gokay Deveci. This passive solar house is open plan with the main central living room overlooked by a first floor gallery[for the purposes of part B of the Approved Documents] - A raised area or platform around the sides or at the back of a room which provides extra space.[for the purposes of part B of the Approved Documents] – A raised area or platform around the sides or at the back of a room which provides extra space. living […]
‘Energy use’ is usually associated with how much energy is used to construct a new building. However, this is only part of the story. Most buildings get altered and repaired and redecorated a considerable number of times during their lifetime and taken to an extreme, some houses are constantly having ‘makeovers’. This can vastly increase […]