Good Homes Alliance: Stawell by the Low Carbon Building Group

 

DOMESTIC IN-USE BUILDING PERFORMANCE AND POST OCCUPANCY EVALUATION
Understanding the effects of design and handover process in the in-use performance of a Code Level 5 home.

Aims

This project focussed on a four bedroom 139 m2, detached house built in 2009 to Code for Sustainable Homes Level 5 (zero net carbon emissions from heating, hot water, ventilation and lighting), using a timber frame, wood fibre board outer insulation, recycled newspaper inner insulation, OSB internal lining as primary air barrier, and either rendered or timber-clad depending upon façade.

Methodology

  • Capture the ‘as build’ performance of the building envelope and installed equipment and compare it to the ‘as designed’ one.
  • Evaluate the success of the handover process providing a learning legacy for the future.
  • Map the reaction of the occupants as they first settle in their new houses (amenity, comfort levels, understanding of the new systems).
  • Improve performance by providing feedback on how tenants use their houses and understand the installed equipment.
  • Establish the in-use performance of Mechanical Ventilation and Heat Recovery (MVHR) and solar passive design.
  • Study the usability, effectiveness and robustness of the micro generation solutions.

Conclusions

The study revealed the impact of handover, protocol for fine-tuning and repair of service systems. One of the key areas of user dissatisfaction was the missing attention to detail in construction finish and design layout. On a more positive note the monitoring process has helped to reveal that the critical concern of low internal winter temperatures can be easily rectified with minor changes to the heating system.

PROJECT TEAM

CONTACT DETAILS

Low Carbon Building Group

Oxford Brookes University
Headington Campus
Gipsy Lane
Oxford, OX3 0BP