Passive House Window Talks 2016

A couple of weeks ago, we took part to the 2016 edition of the Passive House Window Talks. This year, the location was Riga, Latvia. The focus of the event is the importance of windows for comfort and energy efficiency of highly performing buidlings such as passive houses.

The potential benefit of an early ‘Blower Door Test’.

In December we ran a 'Type B' Blower Door Test on our CasaClima Class A project, "Conte Re", under construction near Albinea (in the province of Reggio Emilia, Italy). Many of our colleagues wondered why we decided to run the test so early in the construction process. Here is a brief overview of the benefits...

A Disastrous Case Study: How Replacing Windows Alone Can Lead to Mold

In our previous articles, we have cautioned that an energy retrofit should be approached with an integrated, whole-building approach, and by a professional with experience in calculating and simulating thermal envelopes. The photos below show what happened to one family's home when they decided to do an independent partial energy retrofit, without consulting a qualified professional. In this case, they decided to replace the old windows of their house with newer, high performance windows, hoping that they would be able to reduce their energy consumption.

stove and chair in living room

How do you define the “health and comfort” of building occupants?

We often refer to the “health and comfort” of building occupants. What does this mean? An ideal building would be one that you wouldn’t notice or feel, one that would allow the body to exist in a healthy and comfortable state and at a comfortable temperature, or even one which would improve your sense of wellbeing upon entering. How do architects know how to design for your comfort? How can that be measured?

Mold and condensation problems

Mold and condensation on the interior surfaces of a house's thermal envelope is a self-evident proof of poor quality and lack of comfort. It can happen on walls, roof, slabs and so on. These phenomena are symptoms of degrading building quality, and have immediate direct consequences on indoor air quality, health of the occupants and the overall comfort inside the house.

Energy effiency retrofit: external insulation or new doors and windows?

The future of the construction industry in Italy is in the energy efficiency improvement of our existing building stock. We are often asked whether you should invest in external insulation or in new windows for the highest return of investment, as far as comfort and energy savings. The short answer is neither or both. Allow us to explain...

Why an Italian regional energy certification is not enough to guarantee the quality of a building.

From a purely commercial point of view, the Italian real estate market seems to now understand the concept of the energy certification of buildings. However, the certificate itself is not sufficient to ensure the comfort and quality of the building.…