Tag: energy efficient

Advice Center

How to make your home more energy efficient?  

Before you remodel your home or design a new one you should consider investing in energy efficiency, especially during this cost-of-living crisis. You will save energy and money and your home will be more comfortable.  

How energy efficient is your home?  

The first step in this process is to find out how much energy your home uses. And what is the most effective way to improve it. If your home has an energy performance certificate, it will help you identify any possible improvements. You can find any current or expired EPC in the UK on the government’s website.  

The main aspects of an energy efficient home –  

There are often 3 main aspects that are crucial when achieving an energy efficient home design, and they are:  

  • Air quality – 

Adding high quality insulation to your home will make it more air tight. The tighter the air the more heat it retains. However, it’s important to install a good ventilation system. This will allow you to remove the moist air that builds up in your home, without losing heat.  

  • Insulation 

Choosing the right insulation is important when it comes to retaining as much heat as possible. There are many effective ways to insulate your home, which can reduce heat loss. For example: cavity wall insulation, floor insulation, windows and doors, solid wall insulation, etc.  

  • Heating and cooling –  

Since the gas prices are increasing homeowners are looking for the best ways to save some money. Once your home is properly insulated you won’t need as much heat to maintain a comfortable temperature. This is a benefit because you will use less oil, gas or electricity.  

Can reducing a home’s energy efficiency help combat climate change?  

Homes that use energy supplied from the burning of fossil fuels are responsible for a large amount of carbon dioxide emissions. This means improving the energy efficiency of a home can reduce the burning fossil fuels.  

Contact us

Architecture & Building

A guide to Passive houses: definition, benefits and cost   

Passive house design is an alternative to regular heating. Instead of having a boiler and radiators, they use a special ventilation system and effective insulation. Read on to find out more about passive house standards  

What is a passive house?  

A passive house is a design standard that is energy efficient, comfortable, affordable and ecological all at the same time. The houses attain thermal comfort with minimal heating and cooling. They achieve this by using insulation, appropriate windows and doors, airtightness, elimination of thermal bridges and ventilation systems with heat recovery.  

Who invented the passive house?  

The idea of the house was created by researchers in Germany however, they were originally called passivhaus. It all started with early conversations in the 1980s, led by academics Bo Adamson and Wolfgang Feist. Later, their concept was further developed through a number of research projects. 

What are the requirements for passive houses?  

To achieve the passive house standard, you must meet several criteria, such as:  

  • Airtightness – these houses are very airtight and shouldn’t have no more than 0.6 air changes per hour at 50 pascals pf pressure.  
  • Space heating – The energy demand for space heating must not exceed 15 kWh/m2 of living space per year or 10W/m2 at peak demand. This contrasts with the 100W/m2 needed in a typical house.   
  • Thermal comfort – Living areas should be comfortable all year round, with no more than 10% of the hours in a given year exceeding 25°C. 
  • Primary energy – Total energy needed for all domestic applications (heating, hot water and domestic electricity) must not exceed 60 kWh/m2of living space per year. 

Are passive houses expensive?  

Passive buildings don’t require the expensive heating or cooling systems of conventional buildings. This means even though the buildings require high quality materials they are still affordable. Also, they make for a great investment because you save long term on energy bills.  

Advantages –  

  • Affordability  
  • Lower heating costs 
  • Energy saving  
  • More durable buildings  

Disadvantages – 

  • Boxy and ugly – although there are many benefits of passive houses, many people think the homes look boxy and ugly. This is because it relates to the total surface area of all of the external walls (the Heat Loss Area) divided by the total floor area. A lower number means there’s less surface area for heat to escape. 
  • They don’t add value when resold – one of the main reasons that people don’t buy passive houses in the UK is because they don’t add much value. The owners usually live in them for the rest of their lives.  
  • These homes don’t fit in every location – it must be constructed in a location that allows uninterrupted sunshine to reach the south side of the home. In some big cities, this might be a problem. 
  • Noise concerns – because they are airtight noise can’t enter or leave a passive house. tiny noises will be audible throughout the entire building.  
Architecture & Building, Materials

Get to know the pros and cons of Insulated concrete formwork (ICF)

If you’re looking for a quick structural system with impressive energy performance. Then insulated concrete framework could be a great choice for your build project.  

What is ICF? 

ICF is based on hollow blocks or sheet components, usually made from expanded polystyrene, fastened together with metal or plastic connectors. The panels or blocks feature an interlocking profile, so they can be stacked without bonding materials. Concrete is then poured inside to make the structure secure.

Is ICF energy efficient?  

Once the pour is complete, the ICF remains in place to provide a robust layer of thermal insulation. ICF structures also offer very good airtightness, as the concrete pour and insulating formwork combine to create a highly sealed house shell. In addition, the different thicknesses of ICF blocks, with varying insulation depths, are available to help you achieve your target thermal performance.  

Pros and cons of Insulated concrete formwork –  


  • Speed of build  

The construction is simple and not labour-intensive. Insulated concrete formwork blocks are very similar to Lego blocks in the way they interlock and stack together.  

  • Durability 

ICF buildings are incredibly structurally sound due to the concrete and steel reinforcement that is incorporated into the walls. The buildings are known to be disaster-proof. 

  • Reduced energy bills  

They are incredibly energy efficient and can easily achieve an A rating. This level of efficiency means less energy is required to heat the home, which reduces the energy bill. Owners that have Insulated concrete formwork buildings have experienced as much as a 60% reduction in their energy bills.  

  • Peace and quite  

The blocks used in construction create thick and solid walls, which noise cannot penetrate. If noise is an issue in your area, or you live in a city but want peacefulness then, ICF maybe your best solution.  


  • The walls can be very thick. This can cause limited space in some areas, particularly cities.  

Cost of ICF –  

In addition, depending on the job, the formwork can be inexpensive or expensive. Most Insulated concrete formwork systems on sale cost between £25 and £35 meters squared.  

Contact us