Retrofit for the environment at an East Oxford terrace
We recently completed an environmental retrofit for Lis and Sarah in a beautiful terrace home in East Oxford. Motivated by the need to reduce carbon emissions, they wanted to make their home environmentally friendly and were delighted to find their home much warmer and cosier too.
In this post, we’ll tell you more about Lis and Sarah’s experience and the measures they got installed in their home.
About the home
Lis and Sarah’s home is a terrace in East Oxford built in the late 1800s with solid brick walls. The home was heated by a gas boiler and had a small wood stove in the downstairs living area as a means for providing warmth.
The house had little to no insulation and had trouble keeping a steady constant temperature, making it cold to live and work in.
The couple admit that the house was in need of attention and refurbishment, but required a whole house retrofit to consider the home’s environmental impact, repairing and improving features while maintaining the home’s tasteful design and character.
Lis and Sarah were very conscious of the environment and that was their main drive. At the same time, they have ended up with a warmer more comfortable house which will cost less to run.
The couple were keen to have Cosy Homes Oxfordshire manage the project to reduce the stress and remove potential barriers from arranging and accessing contractors.
They wanted to have expert input and guidance from Cosy Homes Oxfordshire Retrofit Coordinators to consider several different measures that would fully reduce their home’s carbon impact for the future. The measures in the house received a quality assessment to make sure they really performed as promised.
“The fact that Cosy Homes sourced all the contractors made the whole project possible from our point of view.”Lis, East Oxford
They wanted someone to guide them through the whole process. Cosy Homes Oxfordshire drafted a Whole House Plan to create a prioritisation of measures and project plan for making the home as energy efficient as possible.
What measures were installed?
The couple were lucky that they could move out of the house during the retrofit to allow work to develop at a faster rate as soon as the house had been cleared.
Staying in a house during a retrofit is possible, but contractors will need to work around you to minimise disruption.
The retrofit measures include:
- Solar PV array
- Traditional timber sash windows with enhanced glazing
- Air source heat pump
- Internal wall wood fibre insulation (IWI)
- Cavity Wall Insulation (CWI)
- Loft insulation on the main roof with a controlled ventilation system
- Flatroof insulation on the smaller backroom of the house
- Underfloor heating, and insulation
The house is beautifully finished – but doesn’t look any different than a non-insulated house.
On the ground floor, the house is fully equipped with underfloor heating, extending across the living room, kitchen and bathroom.
An air source heat pump powers the heating and upstairs radiators with thermostatic dials for added control and comfort.
“Working from home and being here most of the day, I’d got used to it being really cold, but now it’s just constant pleasant temperature.”Lis, East Oxford
Lis and Sarah were presented with a difficult decision to get rid of their wood burner but decided to proceed and install underfloor heating to improve the environmental credentials of the home. The house can now be kept at a steady temperature by an air source heat pump and underfloor heating, making it cosier than ever, while reducing the home’s carbon emissions and air pollutants from the stove.
A solar PV array on the roof was installed on the south facing aspect to create added energy that is sent to the heat pump’s thermal store.
The retrofit team also relocated the old fuse box to work with the new Solar PV panels on the roof of the home, while making it compatible for use in future with electric vehicle (EV) charging.
In the loft, insulation was installed in between the joists with aluminium spreader plates. Across the house as a whole, there’s a continuous layer of insulation to prevent thermal bridging.
The walls were given a base coat of lime, and then applied 8cm of wood fibre insulation.
The home was fitted with specially made traditional timber sash windows with enhanced glazing. As the frames are made from wood they will be easily repairable in the future while maintaining beautiful the history, style and character of the home.
If you’re interested in retrofitting your home and you live in Oxfordshire, you can get in touch with our expert team to consider your options.
Our Free Plan Builder tool can help Oxfordshire residents collect a range of measures for their home, get an idea of what would work for them and a ballpark figure for how much upgrades will cost.
“I think if anybody was thinking about going to Cosy Homes Oxfordshire and talking to them about doing the Whole House Plan and Project Management, I would absolutely say go for it. I’m not sure we could have done this without them.”Lis, East Oxford
Read more retrofit stories
- We recently completed an environmental retrofit for Lis and Sarah in a beautiful terrace home in East Oxford. Motivated by the need to reduce carbon emissions, they wanted to make their home environmentally friendly and were delighted to find their home much
- A large period house in North Oxford is undergoing a complete retrofit and we will be visiting the property at key stages to document the
- Peter and Maggie investigated getting a retrofit as they want to protect the
Get your free draft retrofit plan
Curious about what home retrofit could do for your home’s energy bills and carbon emissions? Get started by using our Plan Builder to create a draft home retrofit plan, and then submit your plan to our team to start the Cosy Homes process.