RTÉ One, Tuesday 8.30pm
About the House

Programme 11

about the house programme 11This week Duncan returns to the Eco Village in Cloughjordan to see how Raymond and Fiona are progressing with their new house and if they have achieved the passive house certificate.

He also meet NSAI’s Robin Byrne who talks about the importance of using quality certified products and installers when trying to achieve a high Building Energy Rating.

We return to Meenacross in County Donegal where Cathal Stephens has just installed a wind turbine and is almost complete renovating his 100 year old cottage to passive standards.


about the house programme 11Importance of certification
There are a large number of products on the Irish market which are promoted as leading to good BER values and a reduction in home heating bills. NSAI Agrément independently assess and certify such building products as being fit for purpose and in compliance with the Irish Building Regulations. Consumers can have added confidence that products with the NSAI Agrément logo will be fit for use, rather than taking a risk that an uncertified product will perform as stated by the manufacturer or salesperson.

about the house programme 11Airtightness
Airtightness is the control of air leakage, i.e. the elimination of unwanted draughts through the fabric of the building envelope. It eliminates condensation, mould, rot and damp, and ensures that the insulation layer performs properly as it is protected from penetrating moisture. An airtight system consists of a vapour check membrane and a range of durable tapes and adhesives to ensure effective sealing of the building envelope. These membranes, tests and adhesives should be independently tested and certified as being fit for use for the lifetime of the building – some airtight systems may get a good result when first installed, but the airtightness will be affected if the tapes and adhesives break down over time. NSAI Agrément ensure that the membranes and tapes they certify will last for the lifetime of the building if installed correctly. A good air permeability value can contribute to a good Building Energy Rating (BER), as it reduces the amount of energy-in-use of the building, as interior air flowing to the outside through leaks in the fabric transports heat which leads to a higher heating energy demand.

about the house programme 11Window Energy Performance Scheme (WEP) for windows
NSAI Agrément have introduced a Window Energy Performance (WEP) certification scheme for the Irish market, to give consumers a fair, accurate and credible rating system to impartially measure and assess the thermal efficiency of windows. The WEP certificate for a window displays an overall energy rating, similar to a BER or white-goods energy rating, for a defined window and window frame assembly. This certificate combines various characteristics to determine how well each window assembly will perform, which include the thermal transmittance of the window, the solar factor i.e. how well it will block heat caused by sunlight, and the airtightness of a specific window assembly. NSAI Agrément also state on the WEP certificate what the condensation resistance factor is for the window assembly, which is a measure of its ability to resist formation of condensation on its interior surface.

about the house programme 11Insulation
Heat loss through the building fabric can be a big problem for homeowners. Average rates of heat loss in homes are as follows:

    • Roof 30%
    • Walls 25%
    • Ventilation 25%
    • Windows 15%
    • Floors 5%

Correctly installed insulation will reduce heat loss through the fabric of the building, and increase the level of comfort for the homeowner. The installation of the insulation is critical to how it will perform over time, and NSAI Agrément run various registered installer schemes for full-fill cavity wall insulation, external insulation, and blown loft insulation. These schemes increase the level of confidence the homeowner will have in the product, as the insulation has been independently tested and assessed as being fit for use and in compliance with the Irish Building Regulations, and the installer has been assessed that their workmanship is in compliance with the Agrément certificate. NSAI Agrément certified products and registered installers, WEP certificates and a list of Agrément certified airtight systems can be found on the NSAI website www.nsai.ie.


about the house programme 11For more information on Cloughjordan Eco village please contact;

Sustainable Projects Ireland Ltd.,
Main Street,
North Tipperary,
Rep of. Ireland.
Email Dave at sales@thevillage.ie
Tel: 0505 - 42833

about the house programme 11For more information on Raymond and Fiona’s house, please contact;

Paul McNally
13 elden
maryborough hill
 Tel: 021 2429455
Email: info@pmnarchitecture.com

about the house programme 11Construction
Breakwater Construction
Tel: 01 843 1945

Timber Frame
A-Frame Energy Efficient Homes Ltd.
Rathcairn Industrial Estate
County Meath,
P + 353 046 943 0555
F + 353 046 943 0556
Email: info@a-frame.ie

about the house programme 11Roof membrane
Unit 42, Skeoge Industrial Park, Derry
Telephone : +44 (0) 28 7135 9337
Mobile : +44 (0) 7596 851 554
Email : info@hypersealprotectivecoatings.com

about the house programme 11Heat Recovery Ventilation
Quality HRV
Toarlisnamore, Kilbeggan, Co. Westmeath
Phone: +353 [0] 57 93 33 680
Fax: +353 [0] 57 93 32 106


about the house programme 11For more information on the wind turbine in Cathal’s house please contact:

Cathal Stephens, FRIAI, AIA, Architect,
Meenacross, Dungloe, Co. Donegal
087 781 7624

about the house programme 11Energy Consultant:
Patrick Daly, BESRaC,
Mullingar, Co. Westmeath
044 9385 407

Structural Engineers:
Mitchell Murtagh Consulting Engineers,
Killucan, Co. Westmeath
W.D. Buchanan & Co. Ltd.
Donegal Town, Co. Donegal
074 9723288

about the house programme 11Main Contractor and Timber Frame Manufacturer:
Tithe an Earagail Teoranta (Errigal New Homes)
Derrybeg, Co. Donegal
074 956 0336

Stone Mason
Pat Harkin, Stone Mason
Gortahork, Co. Donegal
087 232 8064
Low Carbon Concrete:
Muckish Sand & Gravel,
Creeslough, Co. Donegal
074 913 8040

Solar Conservatory:
Norman Pratt Conservatories,
Ballivor, C. Meath
046 943 5166

Wind Turbine and Solar Hot Water:
Maassen Sustainable Energy,
Annagry, Co. Donegal
074 956 2645

External Insulation System:
Greenspan Products Ltd.
Ballyhahill, Co. Limerick
069 82222

Variotec GmbH & Co. KG
Nuernberg, Germany
+ 91 81 694626

Polished Concrete Floors:
Mountrath, Co. Laois
057 875 6896
Electrical Contractor:
Aidan Boyle, AB Electrical
Annagry Co. Donegal
086 607 7360

Plumbing & Rainwater Harvesting:
Connolly Heating & Plumbing,
Creeslough, Co. Donegal
087 224 4138

Reedbeds  & Composting Sewage Treatment System:
Ollan Herr, Herr Ltd.
Dundalk, Co Louth
042 937 7689

Forbo Flooring Ltd.
Deansgrange, Co. Dublin
01 289 8898

DH Interior Kitchens
Dungannon, Co. Tyrone
048 8774 6786
McGroarty Electrical,
Donegal Town, Co. Donegal
074 972 3700

Tiling & Sanitary Ware
Gilroy Tiling Ltd.
Grange, Co. Sligo
071 916 3139

Wind Turbine:
Massen Sustainable Energy
Unit 1B industrial estatae
Co Donegal
074 956 2645