"Build tight- ventilate right" is the mantra of the Energy Savings Trust. To reduce energy consumption and cut CO2 emissions building regulations now require new houses to be almost airtight, very well insulated and properly ventilated using the most efficient means possible. Sounds easy if you’re building from scratch, but what if you already own a house or commercial property? How do you ‘Retrofit tight – ventilate right’?
To bring your home up to, or preferably beyond, the minimum efficiency standards Solarcrest offer a 'whole house' thermal upgrade package, consisting of high-performance, airtight insulation for the roof, walls and (if practical) the floors, combined with low power Positive Pressure or Heat Recovery Ventilation to manage indoor humidity levels, remove dust and feed fresh, filtered warm air into your home. Collectively this combination achieves the maximum possible energy savings (often over 50%) and will create a warm, comfortable, healthy and economical home to live in (near Passivhaus and 2014 part F, L1A or B compliant if you're in the trade).
Our recent projects include:..
Thanks to DECC and Cheshire East Council Macclesfield's 'Green Deal Pioneer project consisted of:
A popular property with the old weavers of Macclesfield. It's a good job fuel was cheap in those days and carbon emissions meant burnt toast, because it would be difficult to design a less efficient building. When you've solid walls and a hollow roof radiating heat to the street, and no ventilation to speak of in one of the wettest towns in the country, the good news is there's lots of room for improvement.
According to one very satisfied, record keeping client we've saved 56% of his heating bill and 25% of his domestic carbon footprint. He's also warmer and the damp has gone.
This local retrofit consisted of:
Elderly pensioners living in a row of retirement bungalows saw Solarcrest working with the residents and their landlord to supply a wide range of measures and make the property, in their words, 'fantastic'.
Mavis and her neighbours were without doubt our favourite clients. Thanks to a cooperative landlord our ground breaking pilot project showed that it's possible to save over 40% on the combined gas and electric bills in a property that's been through the government 'Decent Homes' programme. Imagine the savings possible if you start with a less than descent home.
One of the UK's first and only 'whole street' pilots consisted of:..
Home to the rich and famous, Kensington is the most expensive place to live in the UK, so it's surprising to hear that it's also the most unhealthy according to the BBC. It's ok if you've got an PM2.5 NO2 filter on your fresh air supply like our client, despite his 800mm thick solid stone walls, but what about everyone else in our capital city?
Prevention has got to be better than the cure, but if you need the cure we've got it. At least we know about the problem now and are taking steps to fix it. If you have respiratory complaints we recommend you look into the benefits of a dust, pollen & diesel free home.
Our most alarming retrofit consisted of:
Rescuing a historic local building by turning it into a master class of energy efficiency and sustainable redevelopment. Eco-tech and local products fitted by local craftsmen. Seemed like a good idea at the time. Blood, sweat, tears and mild frostbite later, behold the new Turners Eco Lodge..
The behemoth project consisted of:.
This picturesque property was hard-to-treat in more ways than one. Conservation area status, a ridiculously steep hill, no vehicle access, surrounded by trees and it belongs to the boss.
Try insulating and air-sealing a roof from above in the middle of winter, insulating solid walls inside and out, and retrofitting ventilation ducting to every room, all without altering the appearance. It's not easy but someone had to do it.
Our most challenging retrofit consisted of:
This retired couple now claim they're saving £4,000 a year, they feel warmer and the damp has gone. That kind of investment puts their pension and ISA's to shame.
The incredible savings came from:
At Solarcrest we understand that retrofitting an occupied property needs to be a well managed process with minimal disruption. That’s why most of our jobs are completed in the attic or outside the property, as quickly and efficiently as possible. Assisting with new build and refurbishment requires collaboration and a helpful, friendly, optimistic attitude. That’s why we employ vetted time-served builders who know how to work with the other guys on site.
Home owners please note; we don't recommend insulation without ventilation or visa versa. One without the other will affect your efficiency if not your health. We also recommend complete roof and/or wall insulation rather than bits and pieces, and always the best practice ventilation rather than just the best price. Cheap ventilation is a false economy. Eco-retrofit work can be disruptive for a time and there are no grants available before you ask (thanks George), but most of our clients find it a far better investment than an ISA or a new Kitchen. If you genuinely want a super home give us a call.
Builders and developers; you'll find our BBA certified spray-on insulation will save weeks on site and should cost no more than making cheap, fiddly insulation airtight. You can book us in early first fix as soon you're watertight ahead of the plumbers. We're normally in and out within a week with insulation and/or ventilation. Just send the plans and elevations if you need an estimate.
Architect's we can help! We'll quickly get you up to speed with the very latest MVHR tech, thanks to our close partnerships with almost all the leading manufacturers. For free design input just email your DWG, Revit, PDF or printed plans over to our in-house architect.