The UK has a large Polish community, and they are known for being hard workers and good at what they do. But what I didn’t know until @ogle13 told was how much better their attitude is towards lowering U-Values!
He explained that every two years the minimum U-Value for their equivalent of their Building Regulations is lowered by 0.2W/m2k, from 2014 their current minimum will be 1.3W/m2k – already better than ours.
A month or two ago, revisions to Part L were announced for the UK, with those changes being applied in April 2014. In them, they showed very little movement from where they are now. Click here to see that post and the various changes announced. There was some very obvious disappointment as many thought this would be the chance to really make some bold modifications and show that the Government is serious about construction in the UK becoming much more energy efficient than what it is right now. Yet no.
Instead, the UK construction companies and their seemingly effective powers over the Government meant they were watered down to a point where the Government really needn’t have bothered changing them at all.
It is so frustrating to see the UK lacking so far behind an increasingly large proportion of Europe. The whole of Scandanavia seems miles ahead, as does Germany, Austria, as well as the aforementioned Poland. Even the Americans are now producing glass roofs for glazed extensions with better stats than us.
So many manufacturers in the UK claim to have world-beating products, yet construction, and to some degree the fenestration industry also, seems like a very rag tag, disorganised bunch which lacks any sort of direction.
We have plenty of small companies doing some great work in either producing and installing to say, a Passivhaus standard for example. And there are many small to medium sized building companies who deal with private residential work building new homes to a very high and energy efficient standard. Yet on a national level with some of the biggest companies, we are nowhere near that. Unfortunately, if any attitudes are going to be changed, it will be because of the small, specialist companies working hard to show what can be done when minds and effort are actually engaged.
The Poles certainly seem to have a great proposal for how to get U-value standards down. The actual legistation that is coming in from 1st January 2014 states windows must have a U-value below 1.3W/m2K until 1st of January 2017 when it drops to 1.1 then from 2021 onwards right down 0.9. This gives everyone, mainly the manufacturers, plenty of time to adapt their product lines to suit these changes – most manufactures in Poland are already hitting the 1.3 as standard so it’ll not be a big issue. This is certainly, I think anyway, the way to go about… Read more »
It was great to talk to people at the Grand Designs Live Show at the weekend. People who knew what they were looking for and asked all the right questions.
When asked what U-Value we could get down to with Internorm Windows they kept asking us to repeat the figure:
0.63W/m2K for a Window and 0.67W/m2K for a Patio Door!
Amazing values and they just keep on improving them year on year.
Come on Britain… we’ve got a lot of work to do to catch up with Europe!
Mark Warren http://www.listertf.co.uk @ListerTF
Sorry sorry sorry…. I got those Values wrong!
It’s just been pointed out to me that on our Internorm Passivhaus Windows we can get values of 0.5 W/m2K
http://www.internorm.com/uk/tipsinfos/passive-house.html @Lis_Internorm :-)
It is great shame for GB not to follow Europe/Poland with uv rules.
I could get much better windows in Poland for fraction of uk price. So much better for me ..better forenviroment BUT not coplay with fensa rules. What a shame…..come on team GB