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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

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      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeAug 25th 2020
     
    Posted By: fostertomI was trying to remember a make that's significantly different from all the rest - Whiteline it is.

    I've no idea about the product or the company but my hackles rise when they start to use meaningless phrases like "Passivhaus Compliant". I can't see any "Plat..." or "White..." windows in the PHI component database so I would ask them exactly what they are claiming by using that phrase and ask them to prove it. Then I'd think about the ASA or Trading Standards :devil:

    Their glazing makeup is also a bit unusual:

    our triple glazing uses some additional components.

    Standard float glass first pane
    Argon gas-filled cavities
    Low-E toughened glass second and third pane

    I think that construction will breach building regs anywhere that toughened glass is required. Incidentally, the brochure only mentions one toughened pane. I'd rather see them quote the actual glass manufacturer and product names.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeAug 25th 2020
     
    I think it was the multi-chamber design, which as well as better frame insulation, if I remember confers much rigidity so less or no steel reinforcement needed. Also the look of it? Anyway, check it out for yourself - you wouldn't go by my vague pennyworth, fwiw, from the past.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDamonHD
    • CommentTimeAug 25th 2020
     
    @djh as I recall, I was offered the windows with a PH cert, but also told that I could have exactly the same thing cheaper if I didn't need the cert. Since nothing else in the house is certifiable other than me, that seemed sensible.

    Also, the folks who specced the windows and issued the (Part F?) cert made sure that we were fully regs compliant re what was toughened or not, etc. I was moderately conservative but avoided some extra expense where regs didn't require it and we decided that practical risk was low.

    Rgds

    Damon
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeAug 25th 2020
     
    Posted By: DamonHDalso told that I could have exactly the same thing cheaper if I didn't need the cert

    How would that work then? Exactly what does the supplier gain by not providing a certificate?

    Note that I'm not claiming there's anything wrong, just saying that the website content means I would want to be extremely sure of the facts before doing any business with them.
  1.  
    Posted By: djhHow would that work then? Exactly what does the supplier gain by not providing a certificate?

    Nothing - but if you want a cert. then you get an expensive bit of paper.

    A bit like jacking the price up because you are doing the works in conjunction with gov. support
  2.  
    An update. After a loooonnnggg wait for an answer to my web-form submission from the Rehau site I got someone by phone., who passed me on to someone else. They were both v helpful, and the tech bloke confirmed James' view that the bead for the '2G' Rehau section to allow a 44mm 3G unit is a pain. He and his colleague suggested local (ish) manufacturers who might do them for me. One was my local installer who had recently told me they would not do more than a 36mm 3G unit. The Rehau bloke (a) sent me samples of the '44mm bead' and (b) told me that part of the manufacturers' reticence might be that they would have to buy some huge quantity of the beading. I said that, subject to confirming the cost I (my client) would be prepared to buy the necessary minimum quantity.

    So I rang my local supplier again.
    -'I can supply the beads; will you make windows with a 44mm unit?'.


    - 'No, sorry'. It's the extra weight of the hardware - which is primarily intended for 2G.

    - 'OK, so are you not doing 3G at all?'

    - 'Well yes, with some reluctance we'll do a 36mm unit'.

    - 'But a 44mm unit will weigh grammes more'

    - 'But we don't do them'...

    Having a rest now while I gird my loins for another try with someone else!!
    • CommentAuthorjms452
    • CommentTimeOct 31st 2020
     
    10 years ago I had to jump through hoops to get 44mm triple glazed in rehau thermo frames from fitters 30 miles away.

    Now our friendly local fitter does them and is happy to talk u values, coatings, thermal spacers and argon versus krypton.

    An alternative would be to email 5 of your nearest well regarded fitters and ask for their recommendation for the lowest window u value with details of frame and glass spec. The ones that reply should at least be can do.

    In another 10 years I'm hoping taping air tightness will also be routine!
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeOct 31st 2020
     
    I like air tightness but worry about tapes in terms of longevity.

    In central and Northern Europe 3g has become the volume product now, again we lag behind best practice
    • CommentAuthorjms452
    • CommentTimeOct 31st 2020 edited
     
    Posted By: tonyI like air tightness but worry about tapes in terms of longevity.
    practice


    I was skeptical of tapes when we added an air tightness layer in our extension 8 years ago so I replicated the joins on a separate sheet and left them in the shed (two pieces of polyethene sheet taped together with tescon tape). 8 years later it's still rock solid!

    edited for typo
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeOct 31st 2020
     
    Comforting
    • CommentAuthorjamesingram
    • CommentTimeNov 1st 2020 edited
     
    Nick
    CWG choices will do them and deliver national I think , for the 44mm S706 (0.8 claimed) they do a thin bead which is a 'pane'
    (I'm currently looking at a cracked corner of a pane that Ive decided to live with rather than change)
    but also a quadrant style one which is easier.
    i can give you the rehau codes if you want. they also do Kommerling 40mm (1.1) which is their main brand so cheaper.
    3G surcharge is £36m2 (2019)
    re hinges , I've fitted these for 10 years or more with little trouble , side casements do drop a little over time anyway, even with 2g, but it youve the lower wedge packer fitted its just a case of lifting slightly when closing,
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeNov 1st 2020
     
    Posted By: jms452I was skeptical of tapes when we added an air tightness layer in our extension 8 years ago so I replicated the joins on a separate sheet and left them in the shed (two pieces of polyethene sheet taped together with tescon tape). 8 years later it's still rock solid!
    Ah But! What fatigues a flexible sheet and-or a glue line is repeated bending/stretching reversals.

    As an airtight seal between inside and outside, there's constant fluctuation of atmospheric pressure outside vs inside, often powerful. Engineers add enormous loads per m2 for wind pressure - think of a yacht being forced through wave and water at 25knots! Every change/reversal bends/stretches the flexi/glued assembly, countless times, often at high frequency.

    Sorry, but samples lying in a shed, free of pressure differentials, is no test at all!
    • CommentAuthorjms452
    • CommentTimeNov 1st 2020
     
    Posted By: fostertom
    Sorry, but samples lying in a shed, free of pressure differentials, is no test at all!



    They get a good stretch every year and the full range of temperatures so it's at least a partial test. i.e. Duct tape failed long ago.

    I accept the point but if your air tightness membrane is seeing the force of a yacht's sail there is something wrong somewhere!
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeNov 1st 2020
     
    Posted By: jms452if your air tightness membrane is seeing the force of a yacht's sail there is something wrong somewhere!

    Agreed. It's one reason I prefer our design of having the airtightness layer near the inside with the water-and-wind tightness on the outside protecting it from the environment to some extent.

    (and the big forces on a yacht's sails and hulls are lift forces rather than drag - I'd hope forces seen by membranes in houses are drag forces, particularly stagnation pressure.)
    • CommentAuthorDur
    • CommentTimeDec 10th 2020
     
    May I ask what the objection to UPVC is? Is it simply aesthetic which I agree with compared with custom made timber but the rest of my house has had PVC fitted a few years back and I have just two windows to do as part of a renovation.
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeDec 10th 2020
     
    frame sections too big, horrendous in a fire, temporary , weak to screw into, warps, spares go out of fashion, not green
  3.  
    Posted By: DurMay I ask what the objection to UPVC is? Is it simply aesthetic which I agree with compared with custom made timber but the rest of my house has had PVC fitted a few years back and I have just two windows to do as part of a renovation.


    As with all things there are good and bad. There are plenty of poorly made timber windows and well made uPVC windows. Timber windows can swell, warp, rot and offer poorly insulated frames requiring regular maintenance just as there are poorly made uPVC frames. There are fibre reinforced highly insulated uPVC frames that can have a very long maintenance free life.
    • CommentAuthorDur
    • CommentTimeDec 11th 2020 edited
     
    Thank you Tony & Peter. I guess it is the lack of a need to paint which is most attractive. I have an old wooden boat which is quite enough of that! I am trying to find a better quality plastic without going too wild on the cost. As others allude to from time to time, it is easy to get locked into a spiral of research and uncertainty about what to do / buy when doing a diy project like this. Multiply that by every single thing you do and it becomes a trying business!
    Having said that, it would be hard not too improve on what is there at the moment.
    Edit... Thinking about it - a bit more frame around wouldn't harm as I am thinking of 25 mm pir around teh reveal with plasterboard over. (60 mm pir going to foam fix direct to the inside then seal/tape then plasterboard)
      PXL_20201209_185247822s.jpg
    • CommentAuthorDur
    • CommentTimeDec 11th 2020
     
    And outside...
      PXL_20201206_141418821s.jpg
  4.  
    Dur have a look at the resident 7 or 9 upvc range , Uw claimed 0.9
    7 or 9 chambers frames , take 44m 3G unit , 75-100m deep profile , designed to replace wooden windows on older houses, flush sashs
    50-100% more than the price of basic upvc frames though.
    • CommentAuthorDur
    • CommentTimeDec 11th 2020
     
    Thanks James
    They look interesting - I'll see what they come up with.
    • CommentAuthorjms452
    • CommentTimeDec 11th 2020
     
    Posted By: DurMay I ask what the objection to UPVC is? Is it simply aesthetic which I agree with compared with custom made timber but the rest of my house has had PVC fitted a few years back and I have just two windows to do as part of a renovation.


    If you only need a couple of uPVC windows to match the rest of the house I'd argue this was fairly sound environmentally if the alternative is to dispose of most of house of perfectly good uPVC windows.
    • CommentAuthorPeterStarck
    • CommentTimeDec 12th 2020 edited
     
    Posted By: DurI am trying to find a better quality plastic without going too wild on the cost. As others allude to from time to time, it is easy to get locked into a spiral of research and uncertainty about what to do / buy when doing a diy project like this.


    We have Rehau Geneo frames with triple glazing. Ours are modern tilt and turn so wouldn't be suitable for your house. Maybe Rehau make profiles more suitable for you.
    • CommentAuthorMike1
    • CommentTimeDec 13th 2020 edited
     
    Posted By: DurMay I ask what the objection to UPVC is?
    Various issues, such as:

    - toxins and pollution inherent to PVC - see https://www.greenspec.co.uk/building-design/polyvinyl-chloride-pvc-environment-health/
    - limited recycling facilities
    - surface degradation and discolouration through UV light & surface deposits
    - susceptibility to impact damage (depending on location) & cracks through thermal cycling
    - questions over the long-term availability of suitable spares - replacement glazing beads, hinges, etc.
    - overall unremarkable life expectancy - typically 20 to 30 years, but depending on quality
    - uValues not always great, depending on construction
    - clunky visual appearance

    But, as jms4522 says, if you're matching existing uPVC windows that are in good condition, then it might well be appropriate to go with the same.
    • CommentAuthorDur
    • CommentTimeDec 13th 2020
     
    Thanks Mike
    I totally get the environmental impact. I see from a quick Google that there have been some studies comparing life cycle impact which I will take a look at.
    I guess the quality of the pvc units would have a significant impact on several of those points and on the long term impact just as maintenance of wooden windows will have an impact on life, insulation etc.
    • CommentAuthorMike1
    • CommentTimeDec 13th 2020 edited
     
    Posted By: DurI guess the quality of the pvc units would have a significant impact on several of those points.
    Yes it would, but gauging that isn't easy - you may be able to spot high-quality ironmongery, but verifying the UV stabilisers that were used in PVC sourced from China? You might stand a good chance if the supplier has an ISO 9001-compliant quality management system + ISO 14001 for their supply chain, etc.

    Maintenance, particularly washing them down every few months to remove surface deposits would also help.

    Unfortunately many people think that uPVC windows = cheap, indestructible and maintenance-free, and buy accordingly. It's good that you're looking into it more carefully :)
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