Choose a heat pump supplier with experience — Energy Superstore

As construction activity picks up and demand for heat pumps continues to grow, leading renewable heating product supplier Energy Superstore has emphasised the importance of choosing a supplier with extensive experience of heat pumps.

13-04-2017 Renewable Energy

Juwo launches 100% clay poroton block for passive houses

Leading poroton block manufacturer Juwo recently launched its latest 100% clay ThermoPlan S7.5 block, which is supplied in Ireland by SIG Construction Accessories.

10-04-2017 Product News

Use all your solar electricity at home rather than export it — Warik Energy

Dublin-based solar power expert Warik Energy has advised anyone with a solar PV array or wind turbine that they can make significant cash savings through the installation of a smart energy storage system, ensuring 100% of the electricity they produce is used on-site rather than exported to the grid.

10-04-2017 Product News

Ecocel factory tours to raise awareness of healthy, natural insulation

Award winning Cork-based insulation manufacturer Ecocel will shortly open its doors for a series of factory tours, with the aim of increasing awareness of the importance of eco-friendly, healthy insulation.

06-04-2017 Events

Ecological launch new guide to window sealing systems

Ecological Building Systems has published a brand new guidance document on window sealing systems.

04-04-2017 Product News

Dimplex supplies A Class heat pumps to major Swords development

Glen Dimplex Ireland has been announced as the key heating supplier for the final phase of MKN Property Group’s Ridgewood development in Swords, County Dublin. This new phase of the scheme, named Ashfield, comprises 173 two, three, four and five bedroom houses.

03-04-2017 Product News

Codema launch energy saving kits in Dublin libraries

On Tuesday 7 March environment minister Denis Naughten launched the next phase of Codema’s popular home energy saving kit initiative in Pearse Street Library, Dublin.

31-03-2017 Government

Time to move beyond the architecture of the oil age

We must discard the architectural baggage of the 20th century to solve 21st century problems – argues our columnist Marc Ó Riain – and relearn some lessons from before the advent of oil.

30-03-2017 Blogs

Experience is key to successful self builds: Kudos

The need for experienced contractors who can be depended upon to deliver the high quality product that a passive or indeed low energy house demands cannot be undervalued, leading timber frame manufacturer Kudos has claimed.

30-03-2017 Design Approaches

12-unit Shropshire passive scheme gets green light

Planning permission for 12 new affordable passive homes, designed by architecture firm Architype, has been granted by Shropshire Council.

30-03-2017 Projects

Flaw in NSAI retrofit code raises ventilation concerns

The National Standards Authority of Ireland has appeared to acknowledge a major discrepancy spotted by Passive House Plus in SR 54, its code of practice for the retrofit of homes, that could give rise to inadequate ventilation and poor indoor air quality in some dwellings upgraded to the code.

24-03-2017 Ventilation

Cutting-edge technology on display at ISH 2017

ISH, the world’s biggest showcase for bathroom design, heating, air-conditioning and renewable energy technology, took place last week in Frankfurt. Leading energy consultant Mark Shirley of 2eva.ie went along to see what was on offer.

23-03-2017 Blogs

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From the magazine

DIY Cork builder hits passive & NZEB with first self-build

Despite having no construction experience, self-builder Eamonn Fleming decided he could build a new family home more cheaply — and with better attention to detail — if he did it himself. And even though he didn’t set out to build a passive house, he managed to meet the standard while doing almost all of the work in conjunction with his father, while exceeding the targets of Ireland’s nearly zero energy building definition.

New build

Norfolk straw-bale cottage aims for passive

Passive house design is often seen as belonging to the world of hi-tech construction — perhaps unfairly, seeing as it emphasises a good building fabric over bolt-on technologies. Straw-bale construction, meanwhile, is usually regarded as the preserve of only the most committed, do-it-yourself eco-builders. To some these two approaches appear to be chalk and cheese, but in fact they are inherently compatible, and more and more projects are now combining the maths-centred approach of passive house with the extensive use of natural materials. In the first of a series of case studies on passive straw-bale dwellings, Lenny Antonelli spoke to...

New build

Simple and stunning Highlands passive house merges old and new

While embracing traditional farmstead design made it trickier for this new build home in the Scottish Highlands to meet the coveted passive house standard, mixing modern standards of super-insulation with vernacular farmhouse architecture ultimately led to the creation of a very special home for proprietors Jeanette and Jon Fenwick — one that picked up a coveted UK Passivhaus Award in 2016.

New build

International selection - issue 19

This issue feature a passive house cabin in the Rocky Mountains, and a jaw-dropping new passive house in Majorca.

International

New build homes face emerging ventilation crisis

Despite increasing standards of insulation and airtightness, housing developers face few requirements to provide better ventilation and indoor air quality for new home buyers — beyond knocking extra holes in walls. But as reports of condensation and mould affecting new housing developments continue to surface in both the UK and Ireland, and research indicates many new homes may have poor indoor air quality, are developers finally waking up to the need for properly engineered ventilation systems?

Dispatches

How to prevent condensation & mould

In this first instalment of his brand new ‘Help Desk’ feature, architect and passive house designer Simon McGuinness of Dublin Institute of Technology invites questions on all aspects of passive house, retrofit and low energy building.

Help desk

SuperHomes scheme: a blueprint for cost-effective deep retrofit?

For a while now, schemes that aim to encourage the mass uptake of home energy upgrades — essential for cutting carbon emissions from our building stock — have tended to fall into two camps: those that focus on shallow measures like cavity wall insulation and new boilers, and deep retrofit like the Passive House Institute’s Enerphit standard. A new Irish retrofit scheme aims to point the way forward by bridging the gap between these two extremes.

Insight

Solihull upgrade trials revolutionary retrofit approach

An exciting and innovative new deep retrofit project in Solihull has drastically cut the energy consumption of a small block of flats by smoothly and efficiently wrapping the entire structure in both insulation and ventilation ducting, delivering huge energy savings and minimal disturbance to the residents.

Upgrade

Deep retrofit transforms big, complex South Dublin home

At first glance, this sprawling house in Blackrock would appear to be a nightmare candidate for a deep energy upgrade — large and sprawling, and with a mix of structures built at different times and with different materials. But guided by the passive house standard, the team behind it managed to turn a G-rated energy guzzler into a healthy and very-low energy family home – complete with an A rating.

Upgrade

Yorkshire passive house pushes cavity wall boundaries

Green Building Store continues to fine tune passive house design and construction techniques with exacting attention to detail, as demonstrated by its latest superinsulated, stone-clad cavity wall house in West Yorkshire.

New build

UK's largest passive building opens to 2,400 students and staff

Completed early this year, the new Centre for Medicine at the University of Leicester is by far the largest single building in the UK to meet the passive house standard — and not surprisingly, its design and construction posed tough new challenges for how to meet the rigorous low energy standard on such a large, complicated building.

New build

Ground-breaking housing scheme captures one developer’s journey to passive

The just-finished second phase of Durkan Residential’s ambitious Silken Park scheme in south-west Dublin bridges the gap between two extremes: while phase one was built to the 2002 building regulations, phase three — which will break ground next year — will comprise 59 passive certified units.

New build

BREEAM excellent building marries sustainability with world-class design

Although Ireland’s energy efficiency requirements for non-residential buildings fall far short of EU requirements, occasionally a progressive client will take matters into their own hands and push the envelope of sustainable design, such as Gas Networks Ireland’s award-winning Finglas offices.

New build

International selection - issue 18

This issue features the world’s smallest certified passive house in France, and the first certified passive house on New Zealand’s South Island.

International

Zero Hour: Industry out of time on profound imminent NZEB changes

The construction industry is unwittingly facing the prospect of immediate, dramatic changes to how buildings are designed and constructed to comply with imminent EU energy efficiency deadlines. In the first article in our new Dispatches section – where we’ll attempt to probe and investigate in detail the burning issues arising from Ireland’s transition to sustainable building – Passive House Plus investigates. Words: Jeff Colley & Lenny Antonelli

Dispatches

Our passive journey #3: Designing our family’s passive house

In the third instalment of Nessa Duggan’s column on designing and building a passive house for her young family, she describes the process of designing a house to suit the family’s lifestyle.

Feature

International selection - issue 17

This issue’s round up of the best passive house buildings from around the world features a striking timber frame home in Oregon, a public library in the north of Spain, and a tennis academy in Sweden. 

International

West Cork passive house raises design bar

The most celebrated architecture of the 20th century belongs firmly to the oil age, a heady mix of glass and steel and no need to have regard to comfort, given the availability of cheap fossil energy to fuel heating & cooling systems. But in the 21st century our buildings must adapt to and mitigate against climate change. That needn’t mean compromising on design, as one West Cork passive house shows 

New build

Stylish low energy house squeezed into South Dublin garden

Built in the back garden of two architects, this simple-but-elegant brick house in Blackrock faced the twin challenges of an extremely tight site and less-than-ideal orientation, but with rigorous attention to detail it came close to passive house levels - while delivering impressively low actual heating costs. 

New build

Chiswick Eco Lodge stitches into historic London street

For this exciting new dwelling in west London, architect Richard Dudzicki faced the challenge of designing a contemporary light-filled home while not offending the sensibilities of its Edwardian surroundings. He also had to meet the passive house standard, too. 

New build