Osmo revives aged wood with highly effective power gel

Osmo UK, the eco-friendly wood and finishes expert, brings tired looking and aged wood back to life with its powerful cleaning agent, Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel. This product has been especially developed to restore exterior wood, including wooden decking, timber cladding and garden furniture, back to its original colour and character.

sustainable wood finish

Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel is a jelly-like cleaner that effectively cleans and refreshes greyed and weathered exterior wood. Made from environmentally friendly and biodegradable ingredients, the product is free from harmful solvents, chlorine compounds, amines and harmful odours. Osmo’s special cleaning agent is also biodegradable and odour free. One coat of Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel is sufficient to revive external wood back to its natural colour and appearance.

“Exterior wood can often look jaded and old after being exposed to the external elements for a long period,” comments Steve Grimwood, Managing Director, Osmo UK. “In particular, high UV rays can bleach exterior wood, giving the timber a greyed and lifeless appearance.  Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel has a deep penetrating effect that allows professionals and end users to achieve remarkable results that will bring exterior wood back to its original condition in just 30 minutes.”

sustainable wood finish

Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel is ready to apply straight from the tin. After generously applying the product along the wood grain, the solution requires just 20 minutes to gently work into the wood’s surface before being scrubbed with a hard bristle brush. Once rinsed with plenty of water, it is recommended to allow 48 hours drying time before applying a finish, such as Osmo Polyx-Oil, Decking-Oils and Country Colour. On average, one litre of Osmo Wood Reviver Power Gel will cover a 10m2 area.

sustainable wood finish

For stockist details and more information on Osmo and its range of environmentally friendly wooden products and specialist finishes, call Osmo UK direct on 01296 481220 or alternatively visit www.osmouk.com.

Galvanised Kee Fittings v Fabricated

In any area where there are people, it is vital they are protected and kept separate from hazards such as heights, perimeter edges or water. Guardrails and handrails serve as a barrier between the public or contractors and hazards.

Once installed, it is vital guardrails and handrails continue to offer the highest level of safety, and the best way to ensure this is by using the highest quality components

The problem with fabricated guardrails and handrails

A popular hazard protection option is fabricated guardrails and handrails. These are fabricated off-site and require a lot of preparation and design work which requires many draft versions. The prefabricated structures are then delivered to the site and must be installed by a skilled fitter with the required training and permits, creating many health and safety issues.

Furthermore, cutting holes for fitting breaches the railing’s anti-corrosion coatings which are further compromised by welding. This integrity can be restored via painting but this will have to be meticulously maintained once installed.

Guardrails and handrails

Many rails are exposed to corrosive conditions which can eat away at the material of the guardrail and once the structure is weakened sufficiently, the railing itself becomes a hazard.

Once fabricated guardrails and handrails become damaged, the only way to repair them is by cutting out the problem section and welding in a replacement, once again bringing up a whole host of issues.

Guardrails and handrails

The Kee Systems alternative

Kee Systems offers a simple, durable alternative to fabricated guardrails and handrails in the form of Kee Klamp® hot dip galvanised iron and Kee Lite® aluminium fittings. Slip-on components and lengths of tube ensure complete hazard protection without the issues that fabricated guardrails and handrails create.

Guardrails and handrails

Kee fittings are hugely flexible, only requiring a general arrangement drawing and removing the need for a highly skilled labourer and work permits, as anyone can fit the railing thanks to the use of simple hexagonal set screws locking the fitting to the tube.

There is also no cutting required, so the tube maintains its integrity, another benefit over fabricated systems.

In a modern marine climate, such as a town like Newcastle-Upon-Thames, the average lifetime of typical hot-dip galvanised fittings is calculated to be around 37 years.

The benefits of Kee Fittings

Kee Klamp® and Kee Lite® fittings offer a strong and durable solution to separating people from hazards, are more resilient to corrosion and can last up to seven times longer than fabricated barriers and handrails. They also eliminate the need for welding, cutting, threading or bolting and remove the need for skilled labour and permits for work.

With Kee fittings you can save time and money thanks to the quick and easy installation, as well as feel assured that your guardrail will do the job thanks to a wide range of components for every situation.

https://keesystems.com

The history of home heating and the rise of renewables

Article by Ellina Webb ~ Marketing Specialist at Mitsubishi Electric

We’re all users of a home, whether we own it, rent it, or just occupy it and ensuring we have a comfortable and warm home environment is now seen as an expectation of modern life.

But it hasn’t always been possible to take a warm home for granted and things haven’t always been as easy as they are today.

Since the days when early man first discovered fire and used it to keep the ‘cave’ warm and the wolves from the door, we have found ways to refine how we use that flame.

From the wood-burning days through to the industrialisation of the Victorian age and the introduction of coal, lighting a fire has been the main source of heat for the home.

renewable energy

Until the turn of the 20th Century therefore, this open flame in a home wasn’t just for aesthetics – or to make you feel Hygge it was the only option available and for those petticoat wearing Victorian women, the hazard of accidental death from fire was a very real threat.

In the 1930’s, we started to see the introduction of electric forms of heating, and the introduction of a gas network from the 1950’s and 60’s, saw this fuel start to dominate the world of domestic heating.

Mitsubishi Electric - The Hub

Mitsubishi Electric - The Hub

However, it wasn’t until the 1970’s and 80’s that we started to see an increase in central heating, predominantly using gas boilers and this still remains the standard for most.

But a reliance on fossil fuels; gas, coal and oil will soon need to become history because as we all know, we cannot continue like this.

So what does the future of our home heating and hot water look like?

As a heat pump manufacturer, you would expect us to promote air source systems but we are not the only ones saying it – The UK government has already recognised that heat pumps have a major role to play in keeping our homes warm and cosy well into the future.

By extracting and harvesting ‘free’ heat energy from the outdoor air, heat pumps are recognised as renewable and qualify for government incentives in the form of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

This is designed to offset the slightly higher capital costs of investing in renewables and is starting to have a significant impact on the traditional heating market as more people accept that they have to play their part.

Mitsubishi Electric - The Hub
Heat pumps are suitable from a variety of homes including pre-1930s, 1930-2010, 2010 – present and new build / self build properties.

At the moment, this is also taking the form of adding a heat pump to an existing heating system but as pressure on new housebuilders grows to clearly demonstrate they are delivering sustainable homes for the future, the government fully expects heat pumps to become the norm for home heating.

The other important factor to consider is that as the nation ‘greens’ production of energy with the increased use of wind, solar and even tidal energy production, then heat pumps become even greener.

Mitsubishi Electric - The Hub

So, the history of home heating has been an interesting journey so far but has relied predominantly on burning something to produce heat – a large part of which is often wasted up a chimney or flue.

In reality though, it’s quite scary to see how slow things have changed. It’s only now that the clock to a low carbon future really is ticking so we have to pull together to ensure we pick up the pace and move with the times.

https://thehub.mitsubishielectric.co.uk

The environmental lessons to be learnt from Dr Seuss

Article by Ellina Webb ~ Marketing Specialist at Mitsubishi Electric

To celebrate International Children’s Book Day it only seems appropriate to talk about a book with an overarching environmental theme.

The book in question is The Lorax by Dr Seuss which tells the story of the effects of pollution, deforestation and climate change after the forest of “Truffula trees” is chopped down.

Dr Seuss was a writer who was frequently inspired by political topics like the environmental movement, which allowed him to channel his negativity into magical and meaningful children’s literature – such as The Cat in the Hat, Horton Hears a Who and Oh! The Places You Will Go.

To some his underlying use of political themes might be viewed as controversial, especially in children’s storybooks, but as an adult reflecting on this story – which was a must-read of my primary school curriculum, the environmental messages are certain…and scary. Nevertheless, I’m glad that these books have subtly informed me and taught me that even though the world is full of issues, if you care, you can help to make them better.

To start, I’m going to give you a quick summary of the story:

A boy living in a polluted area of town seeks to discover what happened to the Lorax. To discover this he visits a man called Once-ler in the place where the “Grickle –grass grows”. While visiting Once-ler he hears the sad story of how Once-ler chopped down all the Truffula trees to fund his manufacturing business, destroying the home of the animals and polluting the air and water. This in turn drove the Lorax away and the Once-ler now lives alone and with deep regret of his selfish actions.

Re–reading the short story of the Lorax which was published in 1971, it’s clear what the important themes are that Dr Seuss has focused on and it’s sad that over 40 years later (and well over 20 years after the death of Theodor Seuss Geisel) these themes are still major issues that we face today.

So what are the themes and how are they still relevant today?

Deforestation

The major catalyst to the Lorax leaving was the cutting down of all the trees. The Lorax speaks for the trees “for the trees have no tongues” and unfortunately all his speaking did could not save them – especially as the innovation in Once-ler’s axe technology quadrupled his turnover of tree harvesting!

In real life and in today’s terms, deforestation is devastating to our planet and at the current rate of deforestation the world’s rainforests could completely vanish in a hundred years. The most common reasons behind deforestation are agriculture, logging and urban sprawl. The biggest impact deforestation has is on the 80% of the earth’s animals and plants that live there. While for climate change, no trees means dryer soils and less absorption of greenhouse gasses.

Mitsubishi Electric - The Hub
Deforestation is a primary threat to animals like the Orangutan

Poor respect for the environment

If you work for a large corporation, the term Corporate Social Responsibility might be something you have heard quite a lot about.  Respecting the environment from a business level has thankfully become quite important in the past few years, but for the average individual, is respecting the environment still a challenge that we need educating on? In 2015 The Telegraph reported on a government survey that showed how only 18% of Britons are “very concerned” about climate change. So does that show that they have no driver behind pro-activity respecting the environment – like Once-ler?

It’s a question we ask ourselves over on our Green Gateway Twitter page (@green_gateway) so feel free to discuss your thoughts with us on there.

The importance of plants

As previously mentioned, less trees means drier soils and less absorption of greenhouse gasses. But on an everyday scale, trees and plants are so much more than that. Plants, like in the story of the Lorax, provide shelter, food, oxygen and water purification. Without the Truffula trees the pollution from Once-ler’s factory destroys the quality of the air and the water, changing the landscape and driving the animals away. Beyond this, plants also provide medicine and store carbon dioxide, helping us reduce the impact of other environmental threats like the burning of fossil fuels.

The impact of pollution

Aside from the physical impact of pollution, the Lorax touches on the impact of pollution from over manufacturing “your machine chugs on, day and night without stop, making gluppity-glupp. Also schloppity-schlopp”. According to Conserve Energy Future, any form of pollution can be traced back to industrial practices. This can be seen in countries that face a rapid growth of industry. The contamination and effects of this are so vast that they would require an article in themselves to do them justice. But if Dr Seuss’ exploration of this theme is something you want to delve into further, the more in-depth Lorax film from 2012 is definitely worth watching.

Mitsubishi Electric - The Hub
Industrial pollution
Industrial waste is a large contributor to global pollution

So relating this back to International Children’s Book Day, I hope you appreciate why The Lorax is not just an enchantingly poetic story. It is also worthy of being in the realm of children’s classics, like his other work: Oh! The Places You Will Go, this has deep and touching meaning that will leave children and adults alike questioning their impact in the world we live in today.

Ellina Webb is a Marketing Specialist at Mitsubishi Electric

If you have any questions about this article or want to know more, please email us. We will contact the author and will get back to you as soon as we can.

Timber Structure low consumption house in Wadebridge, Cornwall.

Innes Architects

We love to use Timber to make our buildings, for its structural abilities, its low carbon footprint, aand the dizzying array of cladding opportunities it provides. We believe wood is a truly inspiring material.

We have been advocating the use of timber in construction for many years now. And our principal architect Mark has recently completed his own house using timber as an intergal component of almost all parts of the construction. The house is situated in Wadebridge, Cornwall and is designed on passivhaus principles, utilising wood for many reasons and in many ways, inside and out. From the structure and the window frames to the finished walls, timber construction can take a myriad of forms. Even the Warmcel insulation is timber via the circuitous route of wood-pulp to paper to recycling. To know more about this project have a look at our website.

img_4601 View from the first floor.

View original post 433 more words

London’s Riverwalk incorporates Passivhaus standard Schöck Isokorb

On the north side of the Thames in central London, the three riverside embankments, Chelsea, Victoria and Albert, are the result of extensive civil engineering works that reclaimed marshy land, narrowed the width of the river and provided a large-scale new area of development during the late 19th century.    Today almost 150 years later, much of the area is once again being transformed as the result of a scheme designed to replace many of the outdated buildings which have characterised these areas for so long. There will be high specification property construction, promenades and parks; and at Millbank, one of the major residential riverfront developments is Riverwalk.

Passivhaus standard Schöck Isokorb

Riverwalk features two organically shaped buildings of seven and seventeen storeys, connected by a central podium and incorporating 116 high specification one, two, three and four bedroom apartments, plus penthouses. The design focus is on light, space, service and exceptional views across the Thames.   Aesthetically the buildings are enhanced by horizontal bands of limestone on the curving facades between the glazing and ceramic panels, with the stonework wrapping around the lower parts of the balconies to create a continuous organic shape.

The avoidance of thermal bridging is critical

With such a high specification development, early consideration was given to the avoidance of the thermal bridging at the critical balcony connections. Thermal bridges would result in higher heat transfer through the assembly and colder surface temperatures on the warm side of the assembly.

Some of the consequences of this being higher energy use for heating and cooling, non-compliance with UK Building Regulations, potential building structure corrosion and the risk of mould growth and associated health concerns from respiratory problems. To help minimise any risk of thermal bridging, the structural thermal break module specified throughout the Riverwalk development is the latest generation Schöck Isokorb for concrete-to-concrete applications, the type KXT.

Isokorb type KXT

This latest example of Schöck engineering means even better performance, which is critical in meeting the inceasingly stringent EU guidelines and the imminent need for nearly zero-energy building standards. The Schöck Isokorb type KXT pushes the technical boundaries in meeting these demands.

In addition, through close collaboration with its clients, Schöck has also now optimised the load capacity of the Isokorb range. As a result, the load capacities most frequently in demand have been identified and appropriate refinements applied to the product portfolio.   The range now provides planners with not only a structurally optimised product solution for the construction of cantilevered components, but cost advantages as well.

Schöck Isokorb

Verifiable performance values

The product offers such a high level of insulation, that in Germany the Passivhaus Institute in Darmstadt has awarded the product with the low ‘thermal bridge construction‘ certificate and confirmed its suitability even for Passivhaus construction. The product has also just been awarded the very latest BBA certification.   All units meet full compliance with the relevant UK building regulations, which require that the temperature factor used to indicate condensation risk (fRSI) must be greater than or equal to 0.75 for residential buildings. The range also provides Local Authority Building Control Registration and there is compliance too with the UK government Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP 2012) concerning CO2 emissions from buildings and respectively heat losses through non-repeating thermal bridges.

Here, the lambda values of the Schöck Isokorb enable energy loss in various connective situations to be reduced by as much as 84% to 91%.

For a free copy of the Schöck Thermal Bridging Guide and / or the Thermal Bridging Solutions brochure – contact the company on 01865 290 890 or visit www.schoeck.co.uk

Find Everything Aluminium in AluFoldDirect’s New Brochure

‘Everything Aluminium’ is the brilliant new brochure from AluFoldDirect, helping installers show their customers what can be achieved in aluminium doors and windows.

“We’ve listened to what installers want and created an incredible coffee-table brochure with stunning installation photos, so people can see the possibilities in aluminium windows and doors,” says Craig Miller, Managing Director at AluFoldDirect.

The ‘Everything Aluminium’ brochure features the full AluFoldDirect aluminium range including bi-folding doors, sliding doors, slimline windows, roof lanterns, RD1 Entrance Doors and commercial windows and doors.

Craig continues: “It’s important that the brochure reflects the quality of the aluminium products we make, to help our customers win business. From the choice of paper to the selection of project images, everything about the brochure makes readers feel inspired to choose aluminium.”

“We know that many of our customers work on commercial as well as residential projects, so we’ve added a section showing our range of Secured by Design commercial glazing.”

The 28-page brochure includes details about the hardware available for each product, carefully selected by AluFoldDirect to enhance performance and aesthetics. There is also information on the colour options available, with advice on the most on-trend colours, held in stock by AluFoldDirect for faster lead times.

The brochure is an effective sales and marketing tool to show customers what can be achieved with aluminium in their home or business. It is available in print or electronic format – to request or download the Everything Aluminium brochure, visit http://www.alufolddirect.co.uk/

%d bloggers like this: