“The CILA” May 2021 edition of Claims Focus
“The CILA” May 2021 edition of Claims Focus features editorial contributions from Smithers Purslow –
Smithers Purslow Technical Director/Chartered Architectural Technologist, Barry Ford, discusses Passivhaus Standard on pages 10-11 of “The CILA” May 2021 edition of Claims Focus and there is a link to a paper written by Smithers Purslow Director, Andrew Bussey, and his co-author, Kevin Dinsdale, of Crawford & Company Loss Adjusters, about the Handling of Listed Building Losses on page 14 of “The CILA” May 2021 edition of Claims Focus Magazine (file also attached below – CILA-HNW-SIG-Listed-Buildings-MAY21).
The excerpt below is Barry Ford’s article in the May 2021 edition of “The CILA” Claims Focus, explaining the Passivhaus Standard and Smithers Purslow’s approach to it.
All of us are aware of climate change across the planet and it is generally accepted that this is caused by global warming through carbon emissions. If we are to maintain an acceptable environment for as long as possible we must seek to reduce these emissions. Energy efficient building design Passivhaus is a standard for the design and construction of comfortable, highly energy efficient buildings with set performance targets, and currently is the gold standard towards achieving a net zero operational carbon building. A good Passivhaus design is based on: • Simple building form – reduce the exposed surface area of the building to reduce heat loss. • South-facing predominant facades – to maximise daylight and solar gains. • High levels of insulation. • An extremely airtight building fabric. • Reduced thermal bridging. • High performance triple glazed windows with window proportions that are based on orientation. • Natural purge ventilation from opening windows. • Efficient background mechanical ventilation with heat recovery. This redistributes heat from hot areas of the building, such as kitchen and bathroom, and redistributes it to cooler areas such as living and bedroom. Repairs to a Passivhaus building When refurbishing or repairing a Passivhaus building we have to carefully consider the design considerations that went into the original building. Hopefully these are apparent from the Building Manual, but a visual inspection will give us some clues as to the nature of the building. An obvious one will be that the windows are triple glazed, but an external wall that is thicker than normal in a relatively new construction is likely to indicate the nature of the building, due to the higher insulation values needed to achieve the Passivhaus standard. A lot of heat is lost through uncontrolled air flow through a building, and this is why Passivhaus buildings are extremely airtight. Any refurbishment or repair of such a building must take this into account and ensure that the air-tight seal is maintained so that the performance of the building is not compromised. Thermal bridging within the building fabric is also very important and so materials with low thermal conductivity are often specified, such as basalt wall ties in place of the more traditional galvanized or stainless steel. In a Passivhaus standard Nursery School Smithers Purslow used Insulated Concrete Formwork for the structural inner leaf, which provides an airtight layer with very low thermal conductivity. Failure to take such matters into account will mean that the refurbished building will under perform and even lead to further problems down the line such as condensation due to lack of thermal conductivity. Building claims professionals need to have an awareness of Passivhaus technology and should it arise on a claim it is important to obtain sound advice from the outset.
The excerpt above is from Barry Ford’s article in the May 2021 edition of “The CILA” Claims Focus, explaining the Passivhaus Standard and Smithers Purslow’s approach to it.
Smithers Purslow are passionate about sustainable design in the built environment and have been advising our clients about environmental considerations for over 20 years: helping them to have energy efficient buildings that save on energy costs and reduce their carbon emissions. We are very pleased that we have been able to confirm our commitment to the environment and work towards carbon neutrality by achieving ISO 14001 accreditation. ISO 14001 is the international standard that specifies the requirements for an effective environmental management system, which is used to manage our environmental aspects and fulfil our compliance obligations in a holistic manner.
Click the link below to read more about Smithers Purslow achieving the ISO 14001 accreditation: