Fri, 28 September 2012
One of the most common questions I get asked is "what's the best form of heating?"
Much to the frustration of most people, I usually answer "it depends…" The best type of heater for you and your home does depend on many factors, however there are some guiding principles that apply to all cases.
CCANZ design guide:
Otago Univserity study on heating potential of home ventilation systems:
Wed, 22 August 2012
Throwing food scraps away is something that most of us do, because it's convenient.
But there are so many reasons why throwing nutrients away is a bad idea. So what are the best ways to make it easy and effective to compost at home?
In this episode I also mention:
Fri, 10 August 2012
Eion Scott is an Eco Design Advisor with the Auckland Council. Eco Design Advisors around the country offer free, in home, independent advice on how to improve the warmth, health and comfort of your home.
For more information go to the Eco Design Advisor website.
Thu, 2 August 2012
An architectural designer sits somewhere between a draughter and an architect.
Bob Burnett is an experienced architectural designer in Christchurch and he explained to me some of the reasons why it's a good idea to consult with a designer if you're planning a new build or a renovation.
Bob is also an experienced energy modeller using ArchiCAD's Eco Designer and he shares a great story about how he saved a client by redesigning their roof.
Bob's website is at: http://www.bbarc.com
In this show we also mention:
Remember, you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wed, 25 July 2012
About 10% of New Zealand homes invest in some form of retrofitted ventilation system. But do you really need one, and if so, what for?
In this cast I talk about how to tell if your house is leaky or air-tight depending on it's age, two basic types of ventilation systems and the common symptoms that cause people to want to install a ventilation system.
Steps to take when considering ventilation are:
To get independent advice, talk to a Homestar Practitioner: http://homestar.org.nz/services
Also, check out two of my other favourite podcasts:
Would you like to be part of Home Style Green?
Contact me: email@example.com
Mon, 16 July 2012
Part 2 of our wrap of the NZGBC event in June.
This week, Verney and I discuss LED lighting, ventilation, 3D thermal modelling in CAD, construction waste management and other highlights from the Master Class day that followed on from the NZGBC Sustainable Housing Summit.
Selected pdfs of some presentations are available on the NZGBC website.
Sun, 8 July 2012
The inaugural Sustainable Housing Summit, hosted by the New Zealand Green Building Council, took place at the Auckland Viaduct Events Centre on June 27th 2012.
It was a great event with over 120 attendees, a very promising sign for similar events in the future.
I caught up with Verney Ryan via Skype to discuss the highlights.
For more information, check out NZGBC where you can now find pdf downloads of most of the presentations.
Some of the people and organisations we discussed during this cast include:
Tue, 3 July 2012
I was lucky enough to first meet Carlin Archer in Chrstchurch a few years ago.
Carlin was interested in building an 'ecohome', but didn't know the first thing about building houses. He did know a lot about building websites thought. So he and his brother sat down and reated Ecobob.co.nz
Mon, 25 June 2012
Barb Cooper is a real estate agent with a difference.
In this interview, Barb shares some of the strategies she uses to build her network and how she's involved in the local community. It's refreshing to hear from someone who loves what they do. Barb shares her passion and her belief in the role that the real estate industry can play in improving the environment.
Barb can be found at: http://www.downtoearthre.co.nz/
Barb also mentions:
Sun, 10 June 2012
It was my pleasure to interview Verney Ryan this week. Verney has been influential in the field of sustainable building and design bother here in New Zealand and overseas. Listen in to see how Verney describes his 'job'.
Links mentioned in this cast include:
Beacon NOW homes
Mon, 4 June 2012
Last week, an evaluation report on the Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart Programme, was released. It makes for some interesting reading, including a cost benefit analysis of the programme.
Check out http://www.healthyhousing.org.nz for more details
Other news to check out:
News real now online at http://www.homestylegreen.com
NZGBC Sustainable Housing Summit. Be there!
Keynote speaker is Bill Dunster from ZEDfactory
Also, check out the most exciting roof in New Zealand and the flash new website of the Zero Energy House: http://www.zeroenergyhouse.co.nz
Thu, 24 May 2012
This week I caught up with Alex Reiche for the very first Home Style Green expert interview.
Alex Reiche is the Founder and Managing Director of EnviroSpec, an online register of 'Eco-Preferred' products.
Check out EnviroSpec's interacitve house to find the best products for your building project.
Wed, 16 May 2012
In today's cast, I complete our introduction to heating systems with a look at central heating.
Common to all central heating systems are three main components:
1. The fuel
2. The engine or heater
3. The distribution system - pipes, ducts and outlets
There are two main mediums for transfering heat. Air is common with gas-fired heaters and large ducts but is not as effective as water based systems.
Air ducts can lose up to 1 degree per m of duct.
Heating that is not true central heating includes inslab or undertile electric element heating, heat transfer and ventilation system.
Sat, 5 May 2012
After insulation, heating is the next thing most people look at when improving the comfort and warmth of their home.
In this episode of Home Style Green, I discuss room heaters:
In the episode I refer to the 'carnot cycle'. This is the awesome thermodynamic principle behind air conditioning and refrigeration. Refer again to our trusty Wikipedia for a good article about the detailed physics:
Of course the best form of heating is free from the sun. But making the most of passive solar heating is a design challenge and there's usually not a lot that can be done to improve this once a house is built.
So if you're trying to heat an existing, cold home, what's the best option?
Sun, 15 April 2012
In part 2 of this insulation introduction, I discuss the main types of insulation used for ceilings, floors and wall.
For more information about insulation materials, check out Level.org.nz from BRANZ:
For more on the properties of wool, including great microscopic imagery, check out:
Sun, 1 April 2012
In this episode of Home Style Green, I discuss the basic physics of insualation. I give an overview of the three main types of heat transfer, that is conduction, convection and radiation. Most bulk insulation products on the market rely almost entirely on reducing conduction.
I discuss what 'R-Value' means and the common materials of household insulation products.
For more information, visit our site at:
Also, for a more indepth discussion on insulation and 'R-Values', its hard to go past Wikipedia:
Wed, 21 March 2012
1 Home Style Green: Introduction and getting into insulation with EECA's Energywise Warm Up New Zealand subsidy scheme
Welcome to Episode 1 of Home Style Green, the podcast about how to live a healthy and happy lifestyle without it costing the Earth.
I'm Matthew Cutler-Welsh: Engineer, Dad, Homeowner and someone who's passionate about making urban environments more sustainable.
This is my first podcast and my objective is to share ideas about building green homes, with style.
Links in today's cast include: