The Concept

The concept for COOLHOUSE Collection comes from the first certified Passive House in Australasia, designed and built by Jessop Architects. COOLHOUSE uses these low energy practices to deliver a quality home in excess of current New Zealand building code standards. We have specifically modelled our designs to suit the New Zealand climate, specifications vary depending on location. They are healthy, warm and comfortable, low energy and durable. Architecturally designed by award-winning architect Darren Jessop, these homes feature clean lines and functional living spaces that make them beautiful too.

COOLHOUSE is currently building in the upper north region of greater Auckland, throughout the Coromandel and in the greater Christchurch area. Coolhouse can build nationwide, pending builder availability.

Low Energy Benefits

COOLHOUSE construction uses thermal bridge-free construction, the best window technology, high insulation, airtightness and a heat recovery ventilation system.
COOLHOUSE harnesses green, sustainable practices and combines them with international performance standards.
It has superior strength and uses superior insulation properties to ensure no mould or mildew, resulting in a cleaner, healthier living environment.
A COOLHOUSE maintains temperature more easily than a traditional house that meets the building code.
The COOLHOUSE building envelope means the insulation properties will not break down and will insulate to 100% of its value for the life of the building. Ongoing energy consumption is reduced, decreasing the household’s impact on the environment and returns considerable cost savings on energy bills.

Construction Techniques

COOLHOUSE utilises modern construction processes and partners it with passive house technologies to deliver a fast and efficient building model.

Thermal bridges are points where heat can be transferred from one element to another. This heat transfer generally occurs between the floor slab and the ground, at corners, connections, windows and where insulation is interrupted. They lead to about 10-15% of the loss of heat in traditional buildings, so eliminating thermal bridges can significantly influence the thermal performance of a house. Through specific design of structural connections and by insulating under the flooring, thermal bridging can be practically eliminated. This ensures that the interior temperature of the building is not affected by the exterior conditions.
The best investment to be made for a beautiful sustainable home is choosing thermally efficient windows and doors. Timber joinery is specified because timber is the ultimate renewable material, it requires much less energy to be processed and is a natural insulator which greatly enhances the thermal performance of a home. Our window and door profiles are made from the highest quality laminated wood profiles, tested and certified to European (the world’s most stringent) standards. We use double or triple glazing with low-E glass and thermally insulated frames. Each sash has four full length weather seals (rubber to rubber) which ensures a perfect fit.
In a low energy or Passive House, the entire envelope of the building is well insulated – the walls, windows, roof and floor. This ensures that heat is not lost in winter and keeps indoor temperatures lower during the summertime.Cellulose under floor insulation-R 2.4
Wool insulation in external walls-R 4.8
Wool insulation in ceiling-R 6.2

Airtightness describes how non-draughty the building structure is. Contrary to previous belief, it is now considered hugely important to achieve an airtight building envelope. Draughts are not only uncomfortable but can contribute to significant heat losses. Constructing an airtight building envelope improves sound protection and saves energy by ensuring that the ventilation system operates most efficiently.The airtight envelope is achieved by wrapping the whole building with ‘Intello’ variable humidity airtightness membrane (building paper). This includes placing membrane along all the connections between various building elements i.e between walls/window and walls/ceilings, taping all joins in the membrane and taping around all services that protrude through it.

A Heat Recovery Ventilation System (HRVS) ensures that fresh, good quality, even air is circulated throughout the house at a comfortable temperature. Heat recovery from exhaust air is indispensable and reduces ventilation heat losses by passing the warm stale, indoor air over the cold fresh incoming air inside a heat exchanger, which brings it almost up to room temperature. We specify high quality systems that can pass on near 90% of the heat recovered from exhaust air, greatly minimises energy consumption.

Available Build Types

Passive House

A passive house (Passivhaus) is a well insulated, virtually airtight building that is primarily heated by passive gain. This means that the building’s interior climate can be maintained at a comfortable level without active heating and cooling systems – the house heats and cools itself, hence ‘passive’.

The Passivhaus standard requires that the building fulfills the following requirements:

– The building must be designed to have an annual heating demand as calculated with the Passivehaus planning package of not more than 15 kWh/m per year in heating and 15 kWh/m per year cooling energy OR with a peak heat load of 10W/m.
– Total primary energy consumption (primary energy for heating, hot water and electricity) must not be more than 120 kWh/m per year.

Low Energy

A low energy house is well insulated and energy efficient, just not as airtight as a Passive House. You won’t have the official Passive House Certification but will still enjoy a healthy, warm, dry home.

The term ‘low-energy home’ refers to the following:

– A building with an annual heating demand in the range of 20 kWh/m to 40 kWh/m per annum.
– The building must not leak more than 1.5 times the house volume in air per hour (n50 ≤ 1.5 / hour), at 50 PA (N/m.) as established by a Blower Door Test. (NZ Building Code achieves approx. 7/hour)

NZBZ Standard

An NZBC standard home is built to the level of specification outlined by the NZ Building Code 2004. We still incorporate a higher level of spec in these homes and they contain the following as a standard:

– Double glazed windows and aluminium Joinery
– HRV home ventilation system

History of a Passive House

The term ‘passive house’ refers to the internationally recognised standard concerning the energy efficiency of a building. Established in Germany in the 80’s – and becoming widely used throughout the world – Passivhaus is a rigorous, and entirely voluntary standard, designed to reduce the ecological footprint of a building through the addition of features such as improved insulation, thermal windows and heat recovery technologies.This means that a passive house is a well-insulated, virtually airtight building that is primarily heated by passive gain – the building’s interior climate is kept at a comfortable level without active heating and cooling systems. In short, the house heats and cools itself, hence ‘passive’.  Passivhaus is a performance standard and not a design standard. This means excellent contemporary design featuring clean lines and functional living spaces can be achieved whilst still meeting the strict certification criteria.

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