Take an eco-friendly approach to a loft conversion by following these top tips.
Image: Newman Zieglmeier Architecture
Quicker and less hassle than building an extension, converting the attic is a cost-effective way to increase your living space. We spoke to Kim Loddo, director of architect Inglis Badrashi Loddo (IBLA) all about the measures you can take to adopt an eco-friendly approach to completing a loft conversion.
Reclaim and reuse
"Reuse materials where possible. My practice has completed many projects where we kept parts of a roof, or recycled original roof tiles, trusses and floorboards. Carefully assess each element: can it be retained, repaired and adapted? If a complete replacement or redesign is needed then it should be done as sustainably as possible."
Image: Paul Archer Design
"Choose the best-performing glazing that your budget allows. The Window Energy Rating (WER) tells you how energy-efficient windows are. Options for double or triple glazing include inert gas between the panes and low-emissivity coatings to let in light and heat but reduce the amount of warmth that escapes."
"One of the most effective things you can do is increase the level of insulation. If you are retiling, add insulation over the existing structure to create a warm space. A good pitched roofing board, for example from Kingspan (kingspan.com) or Celotex (celotex.co.uk), should be paired with a breathable membrane installed over it and under the tiles. If you are not replacing the roof covering, install insulation between and under the rafters, and apply insulated plasterboard to provide a skimmable ceiling."
"Installing underfloor heating, either between or over existing joists, will increase the eco-efficiency of the space. Intelligent heating controls and draught-proofing may improve the environmental performance of the whole house, meaning there could be less of an energy output."
"A simple skylight that can be opened over the stair will maximise airflow and create stack-effect natural cooling. This is a cost-effective, low-tech and eco-efficient element, optimising comfort and bringing light into the heart of the home."
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