10 tips for healthy and sustainable construction and renovation
A checklist of 10 essential building construction tips and how the ISOHemp™ block system available from UK Hempcrete and Natural Building Store ticks each of the boxes.
Tip 1: Thermal comfort
The perceived comfort in your home depends more on the temperature of the walls than it does on the ambient air. Materials with high thermal inertia, such as the ISOHemp block system, absorbs thermal variations which means it stays warm in winter and cool in summer. They are perfect for maintaining comfortable temperatures in all seasons, night and day.
Tip 2: Humidity regulation
The ideal humidity level for a healthy home is 40 to 60%. Above 60 to 70% relative humidity, the proliferation of moulds, bacteria, microbes and dust mites goes into overdrive. Below 30 to 40% humidity, ozone, dryness of the respiratory tract, allergic rhinitis and asthma develop. Hemp blocks naturally regulate the relative humidity of your home around 50%: they capture excess humidity and release it when the air becomes too dry, always maintaining a perfectly healthy indoor climate.
Tip 3: Healthy indoor air
A large family of chemical pollutants, called VOCs “volatile organic compounds” is present in our indoor air. We spend around 70% of our time indoors. The air we breathe there has significant consequences for our health and that of our children. With hemp block walls, combined with a natural plaster or clay render, you reduce wall emissions to zero. Unlike conventional insulation, which erodes over the years and sometimes produces harmful dust, hemp blocks do not wear out and never creates mould.
Tip 4: Acoustic comfort
Hemp blocks alone reduce noise pollution by 37 to 45db. Acoustic comfort depends on exterior noise pollution (road or air traffic, neighbourhood nuisances, etc.) but also interior noise (children’s cries, media devices, various domestic activities). This sound “pollution”, invisible but present, increases fatigue and stress on a daily basis. Unlike concrete blocks, the honeycomb structure of hemp blocks creates a much more cosy and relaxing atmosphere, conducive to cocooning (and teleworking!)
Tip 5: Impeccable energy performance
The energy bill of a building is made up of different factors: thermal insulation of the envelope, ventilation, airtightness, electricity production and consumption. A passive or low energy house is not always ecological! We must also think about the energy spent on cooling or ventilation…
The exceptional performance of hemp blocks ensures a feeling of comfort in all seasons. Heating needs are lower, as is ventilation. No need to heat or air-condition to feel good there… And that’s the best way to reduce your energy bill!
Tip 6: Respect the environment, in the long term… A solid civic act today, within everyone’s reach to prevent climate change…
Concrete alone is responsible for 8% of CO² emissions worldwide
The building and construction sector is one of the worst performers in terms of carbon footprint reduction. However, there are alternatives that capture more CO² than they produce. This is the case of the hemp block, also called “Green brick”. The construction of a house in hemp block makes it possible to remove more than 5 tons of CO² from the atmosphere.
Tip 7: Insulation that stands the test of time
Good to know: conventional insulators must be changed every 20 to 25 years
Conventional insulating materials lose their effectiveness over time: they wear out, decompose, get wet…. With an envelope of hemp block, which serves as both building block and insulation, your home is resistant for life and will be witnessed by many generations. Indeed, the lime contained in the hemp block has completely calcified and fossilised the hemp, so the block has a resistance equal to that of limestone: in terms of longevity, pests and fire!
Tip 8: Work with the experts
Good to know: UK Hempcrete has a team of experts available to help you at all stages of your project. With expert knowledge and experience, we help you to effectively and efficiently take your project from concept to completion.
Building a house is a great adventure! Our experts are there to support you throughout the project, from the first questions. We can put you in touch with architects and contractors who are familiar with this material, or train and support your architect or contractor.
If you decide to embark on a self-build, one thing is certain, you will not be alone!
Tip 9: A house for the future!
Good to know: global warming makes it necessary to take into account insulation in the face of extreme heat.
We can no longer build today as we did 30 years ago: issues have changed. Insulation no longer only has to protect against the cold, but also against the heat in summer. The energy performance of hemp blocks, now seen as vital, will in a few years be mandatory for new constructions and will increase the value of your property compared to conventional constructions.
Tip 10: Live in a hemp house, the green brick with all possibilities…
New constructions, interior or exterior renovations, extension of existing or old and listed buildings, new partitions, floor insulation. This system has so many possibilities. To learn more about the comfort of a hemp house or building why not take part in a short training session to discover all the secrets of hemp blocks. Our experts are here to answer all your questions. Register on our website to find out more