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109 posts

Master Geek


  #2531810 31-Jul-2020 08:49
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Wellingtondave:

 

Minimum building codes suck, and that's the standard houses are built to. 

 

 

What do you propose? Would be better off making a rule that you can't have windows if you want to improve insulation values. Not all houses are built to the minimum. But if you price up a house built with the best of everything, you'll soon realise why many are.


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  #2532195 31-Jul-2020 15:21
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There's also this Wellington City Council assessment I just saw come up on Facebook, done by the sustainability trust.


 
 
 
 




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  #2532363 31-Jul-2020 20:00
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Froglotion:

 

Did you find a calculator that allowed you to input the percentage if wall that is windows? I couldn't find one. That would make a difference as to how much capacity you need. 4kW won't be assuming half the walls are windows. it's a pretty big area, you may just need to allow more warm up time. It has a lot of work to do and it will be constantly battling the windows.

 

 

 

 

Yes, I did actually. The Toshiba website has one.

 

We might consider curtains of some sort. But it is a bit tricky as there is no space on the side of the bi-folds we got. Roller blinds will probably also not work. Might need to get someone in to have a look.

 

 

 

 


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  #2532377 31-Jul-2020 20:55
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We live in the Waikato and have an un-insulated house (the house design/construction method makes it impossible to insulate properly) other than some pretty flimsy insulation between the ceiling panels and the roofing iron (cathedral ceiling) and plenty of  single pane glass (no double glazing). We have a 6 KW heat pump that heats about 65 Sq metres. We have curtains on the majority of the window areas except for the windows up by the sloping ceiling.

 

Within 10 to 15 minutes of turning it on the house is noticeably warming up and it effortlessly keeps us pretty toasty except for frosty foggy mornings where is can struggle at times.

 

We are right on or just below the recommended heat pump size for the area we heat and insulation we (don't) have. Ideally we should have gone a size bigger but overall we are very happy with how it heats the house.

 

I'm surprised you're having heating problems in a modern house assuming the heat pump is correctly sized. I know it can get pretty cold at night in the winter in Whakatane but I'd say no worse than where we are having spent time in both places during the winter.

 

Perhaps you problem is the heat pump, either not working properly or not big enough. How often does the heat pump cycle? That is, stop providing heat into the room and instead spend time defrosting itself. If it's doing this too often then you will struggle to get decent heat as too much time is being spent not producing heat.





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  #2532428 31-Jul-2020 21:14
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Froglotion:

 

Good question ^^

 

I really doubt the house will not be insulated. The only way that is possible, is if the insulation was stolen between the preline inspection and when gib was installed. Insulation is a requirement so not a choice the builder makes. 

 

 

I personally know of a case where the builder was installing the insulation prior the the gib going on, getting council sign of, then removing the insulation to for it to make guest appearance at the next house. I have heard of other instances of this happening as well.





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  #2532462 31-Jul-2020 21:59
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Froglotion:

 

What do you propose? Would be better off making a rule that you can't have windows if you want to improve insulation values. Not all houses are built to the minimum. But if you price up a house built with the best of everything, you'll soon realise why many are.

 

 

NZ culturally needs to move towards accepting better but smaller homes. The laughable but large hellholes that many people willingly shove themselves and their families into (and thus transferring the costs to the wider populace via poor health outcomes and hospitalisations etc) aren't doing us all much favours.

 

 


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Ultimate Geek


  #2532467 31-Jul-2020 22:16
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dejadeadnz:

 

NZ culturally needs to move towards accepting better but smaller homes. The laughable but large hellholes that many people willingly shove themselves and their families into (and thus transferring the costs to the wider populace via poor health outcomes and hospitalisations etc) aren't doing us all much favours.

 

 

Agreed, and often this is due to stupid covenants on land. Eg subdivisions that have a minimum floor size. You end up with 4 bedroom houses with a single couple living in them and 3 empty rooms. I guess so that only the wealthy can afford to build there, and keep the riff-raff out?


 
 
 
 


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  #2532478 31-Jul-2020 23:01
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dejadeadnz:

 

NZ culturally needs to move towards accepting better but smaller homes. The laughable but large hellholes that many people willingly shove themselves and their families into (and thus transferring the costs to the wider populace via poor health outcomes and hospitalisations etc) aren't doing us all much favours.

 

 

While I agree some homes are larger than necessary I'm not so sure these are the houses that are part of the cause of poor health outcomes. From what I see see, I rather think the poor health outcomes generally come from much smaller cheap and poorly insulated and heated rental houses, many of which probably are or were owned by or were built by the government at some point in the past.





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  #2532480 31-Jul-2020 23:13
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Technofreak:

 

While I agree some homes are larger than necessary I'm not so sure these are the houses that are part of the cause of poor health outcomes. From what I see see, I rather think the poor health outcomes generally come from much smaller cheap and poorly insulated and heated rental houses, many of which probably are or were owned by or were built by the government at some point in the past.

 

 

You've evidently not been in a significant number of older homes pre-1980s homes in Auckland. People can, within reason, waste whatever money of their own on crappy uninsulated villas or whatever -- the size isn't my concern. It's the fact that people will pay through the roof for just objectively terrible housing in terms of essentials like moisture control and insulation just because it's in the "right" area or has X number of bedrooms, all the whilst transferring the costs of their decisions onto other people.  


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Master Geek


  #2532483 31-Jul-2020 23:39
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dejadeadnz:

 

NZ culturally needs to move towards accepting better but smaller homes. The laughable but large hellholes that many people willingly shove themselves and their families into (and thus transferring the costs to the wider populace via poor health outcomes and hospitalisations etc) aren't doing us all much favours.

 

 

I was more so referring to new house builds since you referred to minimum building code. For sure older houses that were built when insulation wasn't even a requirement, are bad. People can make the choice to renovate them to make them nicer to live in. House size isn't relevant to health though. People live in small, poorly ventilated, uninsulated small homes just as often.

 

 

 

Delphinus:

 

Agreed, and often this is due to stupid covenants on land. Eg subdivisions that have a minimum floor size. You end up with 4 bedroom houses with a single couple living in them and 3 empty rooms. I guess so that only the wealthy can afford to build there, and keep the riff-raff out?

 

 

Covenants are a good thing IMO. On the plus side, you can easily choose to not build in an area that has covenants you don't like. There can be some silly rules in among the good ones. But I think it's fair to have sizes in the same region to keep values up. It wouldn't be good to build a million buck house, to end up living next to a 100k build, will kill the area value. I've built with no covenants and with many, didn't mind either way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  #2532484 31-Jul-2020 23:48
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Froglotion:

 

House size isn't relevant to health though.

 

Trust me, it will be when people (I've seen real life examples of this playing out and my wife sees this as a doctor regularly) deliberately choose to pour money into acquiring an extra bedroom in a 1970s horror show with no insulation etc because it has an extra bedroom "in case the kids need a games room" (or insert any other "reason") as opposed to accepting a smaller but much better built house and then wonder why their kids are frequently sick/why their asthma is getting worse etc. Funnily enough lots of Europeans live in much smaller homes and their countries often have far better social indicators than NZ.

 

 


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  #2532485 31-Jul-2020 23:57
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Back to the topic for a sec, set the heatpump to 22deg eco and leave it on for three days mon-wed. Write down the power meter start and stop.This will give you some idea of how things are performing. Takes a while for the gib to heat up. Compare that reading to the same three days without it.

Insulation fixes are good but this is just over the coldest time of year in most places.

One or two of my sealed ceiling downlights had a very small gap where they had not been pushed hard up against the gib or later moved. The strength of the draft through that gap 0.5mm or less, on a windy night from the wrong direction was surprising. One was easy fix push and a wiggle. The other is tricky.

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Ultimate Geek


  #2532886 1-Aug-2020 21:51
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Just a thought but check your heat pump is working properly. The air coming out of the heat pump should be 35 degrees + when fully cranked up. Just set the setpoint up at 28 to 30 degrees and let it run for a while. If not it could have a leak and is low on refrigerant.

Could be worth getting hold of a thermal imaging camera, this will show if the insulation is done properly.

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  #2533844 3-Aug-2020 16:23
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Hi,

 

Just as a comparison, here's our outside temperature (blue) vs livingroom that is heated by a Fujitsu heat pump. You can see when we switch the heat pump on in the morning and off at night and how long it takes the room to cool. Thought that might give you an idea. Our house is old but for that relatively well insulated. Large single pane glass windows too. You can even see the thermostat on the heat pump switching on and off (where it is a little jagged straight line at the top).

 

 

Cheers Oliver


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  #2533991 3-Aug-2020 19:42
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That's quite a bit of heat loss @olivernz, dropping from about 22 to about 16. My old house which is well insulated and double glazed drops 2-3 degrees overnight.

 

Nice graph though. What do you use for data collection and graphing?


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