How We Build

Each home, school, university, care home or office building is unique and poses its specific
problems and solutions to reduce carbon emission, improve energy efficiency and ultimately
achieve greater energy security.

Energy preservation is a key element of Passivhaus and EnerPHit homes and buildings
which embody our passion for our buildings to be exemplars in energy efficiency and to set
precedents in sustainability and wellbeing.

Design Development

If you are planning to build a new low energy building, it makes sense that you discuss the
project with our team at the earliest opportunity.

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Appraisal

When working for Clients, we will be presented with an initial brief, we then work together to
ensure that their requirements are attainable and within budget.

Our initial feasibility study is prepared to assist our client to gain a greater understanding of
the opportunities presented by the project; we also at this stage provide a rough budget for
the works.

Land Search

We have also after discussing a Clients requirements, actively sourced a plot of land with
outline planning permission, which our client subsequently purchased in their preferred
location – we then redesigned from traditional to a fully certifiable Passivhaus standard.

Briefing

Our client will prepare a brief which identifies their key requirements, constraints and also a
probable wish list. Within our team we have quantity surveyors, mechanical and electrical
engineers, Passivhaus designers, cold bridging and thermal specialist, there is usually no
need to employ outside consultants for these works.

Outline Proposal

We work with our clients and designers to produce a design, which all parties are happy
with; we also at this stage update the budget.

At this stage we also start to talk to relevant authorities and introduce ourselves to the
neighbours, we listen to their points of view and where possible seek to integrate their
requests. This has also proved most useful when submitting planning applications.

Detailed Proposals

We further develop the initial design, obtain tree surveys, etc. and the full planning
application is prepared and submitted. We are at this stage also discussing with specialist
suppliers and sub-contractors the plans, specifications and programmes.

Final Proposals and Building Control

We further develop the scheme and designs, ensuring full compliance with Building Control
for approval under the statutory Building Regulations.

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Health and Safety Plan

Before we commence on site, we start first with site specific method statements and risk
assessments for all stages of the build process, we expand on the normal Health and Safety
issues to include PH in each area of work.

Mobilisation

We carry out all works necessary for road closures and statutory approvals, we mobilise to
site, appoint specialist sub-contractors and suppliers.

Construction

We hold induction meetings not just on the normal site issues, but we have learnt that we
need to expand to include the very basic principles of PH, with particular emphasis on the
importance of the airtight layer, the quality of work required on site and why we are looking
at a super insulated airtight building, which they themselves contribute to heating.

With regard to air tightness test, we firmly believe that it is better to carry out an extra first
test, at as earlier stage as possible.

One of the biggest challenges that we have seen is with the design and installation of the
mechanical ventilation heat recovery system along with commissioning. This is one reason
that we have developed our plug and play Green-Cube.

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Post Construction / Maintenance Period

We cannot and should not hand over the keys to a home or building and then walk away. A
new Passivhaus home owner needs to live a slightly different way of life, we have seen that
in main land Europe, the change to a full convert is about 2 winters.

We firmly believe that to get the best out of a Passivhaus, it’s not about handing keys and
a manual over. It’s about setting the system, telling them to ignore it for a week and then
having a programme of instruction with a small number of briefing sessions.

We propose on first filter change (after 3 months) for our maintenance man to not only
change the filter, but to also instruct the home user on a few additional functions, such as
amending specific room environments.

We feel that it is prudent that similar to a gas boiler yearly maintenance programme, that a
Passivhaus has a similar programme, which will maintain the system and equipment, it will
also change the filters.