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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
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  1.  
    Hi, this is my first post after spending many hours reading the forum. The way you are sharing your experiences was very inspiring, thank you.
    I've found this thread particularly interesting as I'm at the early planning stages of a small sustainable building complex, and anth.payne put it:" It's a big headache trying to factor in the different aspects of cost, energy use, comfort, durability, for the different systems in the home".

    Any of you could kindly share what WBS or other tools your are using for calculating the energy requirements of a house?
  2.  
    Welcome!

    WBS? Means wood-burning stove to me.

    I take it you want to do heat-loss (and gain) calcs. I am pretty useless with software since I could no longer afford the NHER stuff, so I tend to do it 'longhand' with U values etc.
  3.  
    Wot Nick said +1
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeAug 21st 2017
     
    You titled the thread planning & heating. For the planning and also to some extent the heating, we need to know where your new build is going to be.
  4.  
    I think the OP refers to this thread:

    http://www.greenbuildingforum.co.uk/newforum/comments.php?DiscussionID=15033&page=2#Item_23

    But yes, what are you building?!
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeAug 21st 2017
     
    Free software Hot 2000 and Hot 3000 available from Canada on line and they are good, could cost between 1 and 2k or more for someone to do it for you.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 22nd 2017
     
    Free version of SAP: https://www.stromamembers.co.uk/downloads/fsap2012/publish.htm

    Personally I am using PHPP. I performed my own measurements, got someone to create a SketchUp model for it, then use the model for the dimensions to enter into PHPP.
  5.  
    First I would like to thank you all for your ultra-fast reply.
    It warms my heart to see the suggestions and questions you've raised so far.
  6.  
    Nick Parsons, you are right, I uploaded my post after reading the older "New build planning & heating options" thread.
    Regarding my project, I'm planning to build 3 to 5 villas with integrated green energy and heating solutions.
    The villas will be situated in the east of Lebanon, with an elevation of 1200 meters above see level, and the area of each one will be about around 300m2 .
    But, as I said I'm in the very early stages of planning and still searching for the technical foundation.

    What in your opinion are the main factors??
  7.  
    Nick, addressing the software you proposed.

    I've looked into AutoAssessorPRO, but my understanding this is what you meant by NHER.
    The program looks very professional, but at this stage I was looking for a free software to use and if I get the hang of it I'll buy a pro one.
  8.  
    Nick, addressing the software you proposed.

    I've looked into AutoAssessorPRO, but my understanding this is what you meant by NHER.
    The program looks very professional, but at this stage I was looking for a free software to use and if I get the hang of it I'll buy a pro one.
  9.  
    Tony, I've looked for some you tube movies of the hot2000. It seems exactly what I'm looking for, thank you very much.
    You noted that I could ask someone online to do the calc. for me, have you had any experience with that??

    if anyone could recommend any more software, it will be really appreciated.

    Thanks again for your interest and your time and your quick replies
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeAug 23rd 2017
     
    Posted By: zgreentouchI'm planning to build 3 to 5 villas with integrated green energy and heating solutions.
    This is interesting.
    Have you though how you are going to meter it all, individually or as a fixed payment.
    I assume there is a good solar resource there, so a combination of PV and ST is probably the cheapest solution.
    A diesel generator as backup will also be needed (also useful during construction).
    Provisions for battery storage should be thought about, if not acted on.
    Have you considered what you will do for fresh water (we call it potable) and sewage? Both use energy to processes.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeAug 23rd 2017
     
    Posted By: SteamyTeaST is probably the cheapest solution
    What's your price?!
    • CommentAuthorgyrogear
    • CommentTimeAug 24th 2017
     
    well, Tom, not wanting to beat ST to the post or anything, for mine, going dirt-cheap and DIY, I (apparently...) will be/am forking out 222 Euros per installed square metre...

    gg
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeAug 24th 2017
     
    I was being facetious - but your answer is valuable!
  10.  
    "Thanks again for your thoughts on the matter "Steamy Tea", I haven't figured out yet how I'm going to measure it all.
    I think that it will be a fixed payment, but it is definitely something to be decided along the way...
    I do have very good solar source (more than 300 day sun per year here).
    If it isn't to much trouble, have you had any experience with building and using battery storage??"
  11.  
    Posted By: zgreentouchI haven't figured out yet how I'm going to measure it all.
    I think that it will be a fixed payment, but it is definitely something to be decided along the way...

    From my experience in the past a fixed fee (or included in the price) quickly equates to 'it doesn't matter how much we use its all in the price"
    The example that come to mind is when my wife was renting out her house she had the gas usage included in the rent - until she arrived one day to find the heating and gas fire on full blast and the windows open, she asked "why are the windows open?" and was told "It was getting too hot". Needless to say the rent was changed to separate meter read gas and electricity bills.

    IMO charged for usage is the only way to avoid waste and over consumption.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeSep 2nd 2017
     
    Posted By: zgreentouchIf it isn't to much trouble, have you had any experience with building and using battery storage??"
    Only at the academic level (designed a system 12 years ago), not kept up too much with the very latest systems as they are still a bit to pricey and don't have the long term reliability history yet.
    I would think that a diesel generator is still the cheapest off-grid system, even more so if it is a combined heat and power unit.
  12.  
    "Peter_in_Hungary & SteamyTea: I would like to thank you both for your answers. I especially liked the example you included. I think that you pretty much convinced me that a fixed price isn't the right choice.
    As for using battery storage, thank you for your reply SteamyTea. I'll continue looking into it.
    If I learn something worthwhile, I'll share it with you.
    Have a great week !
    • CommentAuthorCWatters
    • CommentTime6 days ago
     
    In theory it should be possible to measure the heat energy delivered to each house. For example you just need to know the temperature of the water (flow and return) and the volume of water (which is essentially the flow rate * time). That would allow you to apportion the running costs to each villa but I still think there would be problems, the main one being the inability of owners to shop around for alternative energy suppliers.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTime6 days ago
     
    And a more serious problem for the one supplier when their system fails.
  13.  
    Posted By: CWattersIn theory it should be possible to measure the heat energy delivered to each house. For example you just need to know the temperature of the water (flow and return) and the volume of water (which is essentially the flow rate * time). That would allow you to apportion the running costs to each villa

    you can buy a unit that fits in both flow and return and is linked that measures temps and flow and gives a reading in kWh.
    • CommentAuthorSigaldry
    • CommentTime6 days ago edited
     
    To echo Gravelld's previous reply, If you're looking at compliance for UK, look at STROMA's SAP software to get an idea, as it's free. While this can help with looking at general things that might have an effect, it's important to note that an understanding of SAP and it's conventions will be useful to get the most out of it.

    An energy assessment (SAP) needs to be done at design stage before you start work for submission to building control to sign off before works commence on site. This needs to be produced by a 'competent person'.

    If you propose changing things during the build, this calculation really should be updated and checked before doing them (as some changes might cause a building to fail at the end).

    Once it's built, the design stage assessment needs to be changed into an as-built one for a completion, swapping out design stage proposals for known information - An Energy Performance Certificate then comes from that and this must be produced by an accredited (audited) energy assessor.

    You also need to be clear that an energy assessment is based on average occupancy and demands and as such, probably won't match how a dwelling actually performs, once real occupancy and building use comes into play. In that respect, PHPP may be useful. Again, to get the most out of that requires knowledge and training of using PHPP.

    A good energy assessor can add value, but some of the advanced self-builders here can also pass on some very valuable insights.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTime6 days ago
     
    Posted By: SigaldryIf you're looking at compliance for UK

    Fortunately, zgreentouch isn't, so can avoid SAP altogether!

    Posted By: zgreentouchThe villas will be situated in the east of Lebanon
    • CommentAuthorSigaldry
    • CommentTime6 days ago
     
    Ah ignore me then - usually for the best.
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