Sustainable Living with Swistherm from Alumasc

Sustainable Living with Swistherm from Alumasc

Swistherm external wall insulation (EWI) from facade specialists Alumasc, has been chosen for a cutting edge residential project in Wales which has been built to PassivHaus standards, representing the very latest in sustainable building design.

The project, named Ty Haul, fulfilled an initial design brief to meet AECB requirements at Gold level - a standard not achieved by any other residential building in the UK. In meeting these standards, Ty Haul also became one of only a small number of properties in the UK to comply with the PassivHaus principal. Already popular in Europe, PassivHaus promotes energy efficient construction of residential buildings, providing excellent comfort conditions in winter and summer. It requires high levels of insulation, air quality and sustainability, using efficient components and a whole-house ventilation system to achieve low running costs.

The outstanding thermal performance of Alumasc’s Swistherm EWI system was key in its specification as part of an environmentally sound construction package. Owner Simon Phillips, whose vision for a self-sustaining, low-carbon home led to the formation of his sustainable building company Passiv Solar Homes, designed Ty Haul in partnership with his father’s architects practice Michael Phillips Architects of Ludlow in Shropshire.

Alumasc-approved contractor, Eaden Homes of Anglesey, installed 350m2 of Swistherm which is a durable, lightweight, thin coat render system, perfectly suited to solid wall construction. Fully weather resistant and vapour permeable, Swistherm eliminates internal condensation and reduces energy consumption. Insulated slabs are fixed directly to the substrate and finished with a choice of silicone or mineral-based topcoat. The use of 240mm extruded platinum polystyrene insulation had the ability to achieve the target U-value of 0.10, exceeding the PassivHaus requirement. The insulation panels are also available in a variety of additional materials including mineral wool and highly sustainable natural cork for environmentally sensitive applications.

Swistherm offers a range of decorative finishes and over 400 colours and toning shades. Silkolitt ST Silicone render in White was the chosen finish for Ty Haul, providing an attractive yet robust defence against the property’s coastal location.

BBA approved and fully warranted with a life expectancy in excess of 30 years, Swistherm is manufactured to ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 14001:2004 Quality and Environmental Management standards in accordance with Alumasc’s commitment to sustainable building practises.

For comprehensive details of Alumasc’s facade systems or to request literature, please contact Alumasc on (0808) 100 2008 or visit

Simon Phillips can be contacted at Passiv Solar Homes on (01407) 810326.

Michael Phillips Architects, Ludlow can be contacted on (01584) 877396.

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