Saturday 31 March 2012

Starting to frame out the downstairs WC

We are working on framing the vanity counter in the downstairs loo - granted it doesn't look like much now but when it has the timber boarding on it, it should look good!

Monday 26 March 2012

First meter reading since heat pump has been running

Since the heat pump was commissioned on Wednesday last week we have used 50kWh of electricity running it.  This works out about £7.50.  We were quite pleased with this because the heat pump had had a forced start and had been made to heat the whole cylinder of hot water as part of the commissioning.

Wednesday 21 March 2012

Filling and flushing & commissioning the heat pump

Today is the day that the heat pump will be commissioned and the underfloor heating will start running.  The gylcol opened and ready to fill the ground loops (currently there is only water in the loops).

This wheelie bin is the  filling and flushing pump for the ground loops.  The glycol is poured into the bin...

The glycol in the bin...

The glycol is then pumped round the ground loops until all the air is removed.

The heat pump is now up and running. This is the heat pump display. It is very intuitive and easy to use.  You can have a go online at

The solar thermal panels were also commissioned today and so we will hopefully have a plentiful supply of free hot water.  The water cylinder is quite large (about 400 litres) to take advantage of sunny days and store as much hot water as possible.

Trial of clay top coat arrives

Tubs of clay top coat arrive to try out.  The clay is self coloured white and comes in a powder that you mix with water.  We are bringing forward two rooms (downstairs WC and Bedroom 4) to try out different finishes and see how well the clay and lime plasters go onto the magnesium board.

Natural cottom mesh / scrim for reinforcing the plaster at joints in the boards / change of substrate.

Underfloor heating mat in en-suite

The underfloor heating mat rolled out in the ensuite.

Monday 19 March 2012

Underfloor heating mat in upstairs bathrooms

Upstairs we have got no heating system.  The mechanical ventilation heat recovery system will preheat the fresh air so this will provide some sort of heat, and, well, heat rises!  As we have a tiled floor in the bathrooms we were concerned about the floor feeling cold underfoot and so we have opted to install an electric mat with a rather sophisticated control and monitoring thermostat, so we can see how much energy it is using and try and reduce this as much as possible by getting optimum performance out of the mat.

The heating wires come contained within a fiberglass mesh which makes it incredibly easy to lay.  You can cut the mat (but obviously not the wires) to flip and rotate it to get the right shape.

The mat rolled out in the family bathroom.  This will need to be secured down before tiling but we jut want to lay it out for now to see where to put the thermostat back box, we will then roll it up again until we are ready to tile.

Digging out the glycol for the ground loops

The glycol to fill the ground loops was delivered when we installed the ground loops - coming up for 2 years in April!  We have dug out the 25litre drums ready to fill and flush the ground loops, in preparation for the commissioning of the system.

Saturday 17 March 2012

Resilient bar noggins

Cutting in short sections of resilient bar between the main runs.  All edges of the magnesium board we are putting on the GF ceiling need to be supported so these noggins are located at the ends of the magnesium sheets.

Cutting a hole in the ceiling boards in the GF WC for the ventilation duct / grille.

Monday 12 March 2012

Filling and flushing the solar thermal panels

The solar flushing pump!  Until now the solar thermal panels have only had air in them, but today they were filled with glycol and put under pressure. The system will be left under pressure and  checked tomorrow.   If the pressure hasn't dropped, all is well and the panels will be ready to be commissioned.

Sunday 11 March 2012

...resilient bars in the main living space

All the resilient bar is now up, except in the utility room.  Just the resilient bar noggins to fit now.

Thursday 8 March 2012

More resilient bars

Pressing on with getting the resilient bars up - the main runs are now up in the study.

Monday 5 March 2012

The heating system wired up

The underfloor heating manifold with all the electrical switches and thermostats.

We are getting ready to commission the heat pump and solar hot water.  This needs to be done before the end of March to qualify for the grant.  It is a little sooner that we would have commissioned it otherwise.