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Why Build a Passive House? (Passivhaus)

Passive House homes utilise a tried-and-test methodology to provide buildings with high levels of comfort and which use very little energy for heating and cooling, which has huge benefits for health, wellbeing and energy security. Passivhaus also has a separate standard (using the same methodology) for deep retrofit projects.

 

Michael Groves is a Certified Passive House Designer and has undertaken rigorous training and passed the Passivhaus Institute's exam to ensure he has the expertise to meet this exacting standard.

What are the Benefits?

Comfort & Health: In a Passive House, comfortable temperatures are maintained whatever the weather is doing, without the peaks and troughs associated with conventionally built houses. Careful consideration of the orientation, shading and detailed modelling ensures that you keep cool during the summer. High quality windows, more insulation and no draughts means no cold spots, no mould and no condensation and very little energy is used to heat a Passive House.

Fresh Air: A Passive House has constant clean, fresh air. The ventilation systems ensure that air is purified and pollutants are kept out. You can always open the window to let the outside in too!

Sound-proof: A Passive House is peaceful and quiet, no matter what is happening outside. High-quality construction, triple-glazing, and high levels of insulation and airtightness means you won't disturb the neighbours (and they won't disturb you!).

It's good for your pocket: A Passive House offers huge reductions in energy usage, meaning savings from year 1, which will only increase over the lifetime of the building.

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How do you Build a Passive House?

A Passive House can utilise many different construction techniques including masonry construction or timber-frame and is not limited to any style. A Passive House requires a lot of skill and expertise to design, but that's where we come in! Below are some of the key design considerations.

Accurate Design Modelling: All aspects of the design, detailing and equipment are modelled using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) using real-life climate data to verify the building performance including solar gain to maximise heat gains in winter whilst reducing the risk of overheating in summer.

High levels of Insulation: A Passive House typically has significantly more insulation than a conventional new-build home. The quality of the installation is also carefully considered.

Thermal Bridge Free: Passive House design avoids 'thermal bridges' where the line of insulation is interrupted. In a Passive House all junctions are carefully considered. Thermal Bridge free construction prevents cold spots, mould and condensation.

Airtight Building Fabric: A Passive House is built to high levels of air-tightness to reduce heat loss via draughts. This requires careful design consideration and high-quality construction.

High-performance Windows: Triple-glazed windows with high-quality, thermally efficient frames ensure that there are no cold spots.

Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery (MVHR): MVHR provides fresh, purified air at a comfortable temperature throughout the home, but this doesn't stop you opening the windows too!

If you're considering a Passive House, please get in touch to find out more.

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