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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
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    • CommentAuthordazdread
    • CommentTimeMar 25th 2013
     
    Hi there,

    Transition Town Market Harborough is part of a successful bid to run a sustainability project here in Market Harborough over the next five years... can't tell you the name as it is a secret for now :o)

    We are working with a local housing association to create a demonstration retro-fit home, now obviously we would ideally like to have a solid walled, single glazed dwelling to show the dramatic savings that can be made but the only home we have available to us is a 1950's cavity wall (Filled) home with C-rated double glazed windows and 250mm of loft insulation (Presumably rockwool) and it has an A-rated boiler. The house is certified band C on its EPC.

    So the reality is that this home is probably where many private homes are and there are no real cost effective infrastructure upgrades that can be made. We have decided to proceed with this home and the concrete ground floor has been dug out and replaced with an insulated slab and inter floor insulating installed (Aided by the fact the ceiling fell down).

    The question here is can significant savings be made by technology and services as well as behavioral changes if so can we have your ideas and hopefully they will create an easily replicable package for other homes.

    We have decided to provide this home to the tenants with the white goods in place so as not to compromise the project with old, energy inefficient goods.

    Can you recommend anything that we should consider... with a limited budget.

    Best regards

    Darren
    • CommentAuthorBeau
    • CommentTimeMar 25th 2013
     
    For the white goods try http://www.sust-it.net/
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeMar 25th 2013
     
    Posted By: dazdreadThe question here is can significant savings be made by technology and services as well as behavioral changes if so can we have your ideas and hopefully they will create an easily replicable package for other homes.

    Have to be careful with technology, PV may reduce imported energy and be very low CO2e, but may not actually reduce energy usage.
    If by services you mean using less hot water, then it can make a huge difference, as can some newer electrical products i.e. LCD TVs, low standby appliances, newer routers, laptop computers instead of desktops.
    Behavioural change is the one that makes the largest difference, simple things can easily save 25%, can possibly get to 40% with some real hard work (and misery), but then it gets very hard and just not worth it.

    The main thing is to have records of what is happening now, if you cannot compare last year to this year, then anything you do is not provable or valid as far as research is concerned.
    Clear aims and objects are also needed.
    • CommentAuthorjms452
    • CommentTimeMar 26th 2013
     
    Our local housing association recently improved their housing stock.

    The solid walled properties got EWI but for the (filled) cavity walls I presume they ended up with the same dilema you have. PV on every house now!

    Our neighbour originally grumbled about the scaffolding and 'ugly panels' but recently commented that they had really noticed the difference with their pre-payment meter!
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeMar 26th 2013
     
    I got asked to look into the energy use of someone on a pre-paid meter as they were complaining that it was 'really expensive'.
    Found that the real problem was that they only remembered paying £40 to top it up, they had no idea how often they topped it up. They used very little. Why establishing a baseline before improvements are needed.
  1.  
    For white goods I'm sorry I know nothing of value, however have you looked at water usage? My mother has by the sounds of it a similar constructed bungalow, and I installed a hand operated rain water pump to fill the toilet cistern, it has worked really well and is a simple but effective way to dramatically reduce her water bills.

    http://www.tombuild.com/www.tombuild.com/water_saving.html

    I would also look at using LED lighting strips, especially in areas such as hallways and porches which don't need to be ultra bright but tend to have lights left on for long periods of time.
    • CommentAuthorCWatters
    • CommentTimeMar 31st 2013
     
    Presumably this eco house won't have a tumble dryer? It's not good enough just telling people to use a washing line. You need to think about a realistic alternative. We use a clothes rack in the bathroom but then we have MHRV so condensation & mold isn't and issue. What will the ocupants of this house do?
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeApr 1st 2013
     
    Posted By: CWattersPresumably this eco house won't have a tumble dryer? It's not good enough just telling people to use a washing line. You need to think about a realistic alternative. We use a clothes rack in the bathroom but then we have MHRV so condensation & mold isn't and issue. What will the ocupants of this house do?


    This is a major issue IMO. For an eco home to be practical for all users, including those with small children, you need some way of drying a load of washing every single day right through the darkest part of winter.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeApr 1st 2013
     
    Posted By: SeretThis is a major issue IMO. For an eco home to be practical for all users, including those with small children, you need some way of drying a load of washing every single day right through the darkest part of winter.

    I think Colin's suggestion of MVHR and a rack in the bathroom or a 'sunspace' or a specific drying cabinet is one good answer. It's certainly the one we'll use. Does anybody have any experience of using a passive ventilation system in this way?
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