Barn Conversion Project
RIBA member Steve Gregory, Director at the Turnkey Design Partnership in Cirencester, has completed the conversion of an 18th century barn into a highly energy efficient family home utilising state of the art renewables technology, LED lighting and triple glazed argon filled glazing. Indeed, so “green” is the property that he expects it to still fall within the demands of the Building Regulations for energy efficiency in 50 years’ time! The service and support he received from IBD Distribution, with their experience in the design and delivery of fully integrated heating and ventilation renewables solutions, was key to the success of the project.
When Steve first met IBD at the Housebuilding & Renovation Show, Birmingham 2012, he already had an idea about the types of renewables based system that he wanted for the 2000 square feet property. Whilst he had knowledge of the range of systems available, he was keen to ensure that any systems adopted were integrated to ensure the most overall energy efficient and cost effective solution was achieved.
“Other exhibitors at the exhibition could offer me advice on specific renewable heating and ventilation technology, but only IBD seemed to have the expertise and knowledge to make them all harmonise and not conflict,” he says.
After consultations and site visits, IBD designed a system that included a Daikin split system air source heat pump, Envirotube underfloor heating using screeds for both the first and ground floors, Daikin thermal solar panels and Polypipe radial heat recovery for each room of the barn. “The fact that IBD designs systems using leading brands was also very important to me as I wanted to use proven products that would withstand the test of time,” he says.
Making sure the different technologies did not conflict with each other was the task of IBD’s Technical Director Darren Johnson. He says:” This was achieved within our design by careful consideration of all the heating and hot water requirements of the property including heat loss calculations, sizing of individual rooms and close assessment of the performance characteristics of the various technologies.”
Envirotube underfloor heating is ideal for use with low temperature heat pumps due to the energy efficiencies of having a thermal mass in the floor maintained by low flow temperatures from the heat pump. The heat loss through ventilation is neutralised by the Polypipe mechanical ventilation with heat recovery system (MVHR) which has the added benefit of providing for a fresh and healthy home. The Daikin solar thermal panels are used in conjunction with the heat pumps to generate energy for the property’s hot water.
Steve says: “IBD’s input was invaluable, even including information on the space needed to house the plant to facilitate the use of renewables – often something overlooked.”
As an architect, Steve accepts that it is sometimes difficult to keep fully abreast of the new “green” products that hit the market. What is more, today’s homeowners are far more aware of the potential of renewables technology thanks to TV programmes and exhibitions. “A company like IBD can fill the knowledge gap not just for architects and other professionals, but also for the consumer when it comes to getting the details right,” he concludes. “The conversion went according to plan and I am pleased with the role that IBD has played in creating a property that I hope will be in the family for generations to come.”