Our focus over the last week or so has been getting the biomass boiler up and running, with help from local ecological heating suppliers A Greener Alternative. The Baufritz team have been working on getting the floors ready for the liquid screed pour. The boiler is now providing hot water in the underfloor heating so the liquid screed can dry out and form a solid thermal mass. In the YouTube clip, Joe talks to Amy about the three layers of insulation and waterproof membrane laid on top of the vast network of underfloor heating pipes in preparation for the screed. Any small hole accidentally pierced in the membrane could have disastrous effects!

The underfloor heating is powered by our new boiler run on sustainable pellets from Verdo Renewables, manufacturers of Grade 1 premium quality 6mm wood pellets with a calorific value of 4,800KWhr/tonne. Combined with solar gain from the large picture windows overlooking beautiful Lewes, the thermal mass floor becomes a large ‘slow’ radiator which ensures the room stays warmer for longer. This avoids the need for costly and energy-inefficient heating spikes if the temperature outside drops.

We’re pretty confident this system will do wonders to keep our carbon emissions low and energy bills a fraction of the cost compared to conventional radiators for space heating. In fact, Stewart Boyle, energy expert and senior associate for South East Wood Fuels, cited the Sky House Sussex heating system as a case study in his talk on ‘The RHI and bio-energy for heating’ at The Eco Technology Show in Brighton yesterday. Stewart was instrumental in helping us fathom out the complexities surrounding choosing a low carbon heating solution, so it’s good to know we are now an example worth emulating. We’d love to hear from you if you heat your house this way too.