1. What's an EcoRoom?
A house extension that, much like a sunroom, allows lots of light into the room and house inside. The difference is in looks, insulation levels, method of construction, and speed of installation.
2. How does it look different?
It’s an architecturally designed extension that is custom designed from scratch to suit your house.
3. How well insulated is it?
All the main components of the EcoRoom are up to 20% better insulated than current new build regulations. In addition, due to the method of construction, air tightness levels are typically twice as good as new build regulations . The result is a room that takes very little to heat, and retains that heat for much longer within the room.
4. How is it built?
Other than the preparation of the base, the rest of the construction takes place in the factory. This provides a very high level of control and consistency, and eliminates the variability of site construction conditions. All electrical and plumbing services are installed in the factory as are all windows, doors, insulation, and air tightness barriers. Once constructed, the building is then either delivered to site as a complete built building and lifted into place by crane, or delivered to site in completed components and assembled on site. In both situations, the extension is weather proof and secure on your house by the end of the day of delivery.
5. How quick is it to build?
Compared to a traditional built extension which typically takes at least 8 weeks but can often run for much longer and are disrupted by weather related delays, the EcoRoom is completed in less than 2 weeks. This is because most of the construction happens in the factory in advance of arriving on site. Weather is far less of an issue because of this and therefore doesn’t influence the build time. The time on site is confined to 2-3 days preparing the base, and 2-3 days at the time of installation to fix in place, connect services, and complete external and internal finishes.
6. So what’s left for the homeowner to do?
That depends entirely on the homeowner. EcoRooms can be left ready to decorate and install flooring, or it can be completed to a ready-to-furnish state. You can have your EcoRoom painted and floor tiled in the factory if you wish. Just imagine, from zero to relaxing in your EcoRoom extension in 2 weeks, rather than 2-3 months of work, mess, and disruption for a traditional built extension, and than the hassle of decoration and flooring before the room can be used!
7. Why is it ‘Eco’?
Firstly, the EcoRoom maximises the use of renewable or recyclable materials such as timber where possible, and keeps the use of concrete products and other high environmental impact materials to a minimum.
Secondly, the EcoRoom is so well insulated and draught proofed that it will require significantly less energy to maintain at comfort levels than a similarly sized traditional built room.
Thirdly, because most of the construction happens in factory controlled conditions greater efficiency results, material waste is cut down to a minimum, and much less waste is generated on site with lower disposal costs and lower impact on the environment through waste disposal.
Fourthly, transportation of materials and personnel to site is dramatically reduced when compared to a traditional built where this can go on for months, thus reducing the volume of fuel and energy used and reducing the carbon footprint generated in construction.
Finally and maybe surprisingly, the ‘Eco’ also refers to economical. The cost of construction is very economical when compared with the cost of traditional built or a similar looking architecturally designed and built building. When the total cost is compared over a 5 or 10 year timeframe, the EcoRoom will be considerably less expensive because of the cost effectiveness of the build, the low energy demand, the low carbon footprint of the project, and the benefit of the EcoRoom to the overall value of the house from a resale perspective.
8. What sizes do the Ecorooms come in?
EcoRooms can be built to any size, and are customized to every project.
9. What about windows and doors?
Windows and doors come as A-Rated thermally broken aluminium with double glazing as standard, and can have a variety of opening formats. Frames are painted in one of over 1,000 RAL colours.
10. What are EcoRooms constructed with?
The EcoRoom is constructed using timber and steel frame panels filled with insulation and clad in a variety of external finishes, and sit on a pad foundation system. All materials are tested and certified for use by the Irish Agrément Board. The methods and materials of manufacture and construction are widely used in the construction industry in the technically demanding commercial, institutional, industrial, and residential sectors throughout the world. The application of these proven methods and materials in the home extension sector is new in Ireland, and is set to revolutionise the sector in terms of standards, speed, and cost effectiveness. See specification guide for full details.
11. What sort of external finishes are there?
The standard external finish is cedar cladding because of its aesthetic appeal, renewable nature, and proven durability in our climate. Other complementary finishes are colour render in a variety of colours, brick, stone, and all come in combination with cedar cladding – see product guide for further details.
12. Do EcoRooms suit in restricted or odd shaped spaces?
EcoRooms will fit in most spaces, however we will require to see the exact space before we can determine what the most suitable solution is for your house.
13. Will my EcoRoom make the house darker?
Any building in what was an open outdoor space will darken down the interior of the house to some degree. However there are lots of things you can do with your EcoRoom design to minimise this. Talk to our designers about this.
14. What do I do if I want an EcoRoom?
First, give us a call, and we will talk you through the general principles. Then we will ask you to complete an EcoSurvey of the area you are considering for your EcoRoom and email it to us with digital photographs. We will then work out some options and costs for you, and arrange to meet you at your home to complete a full first consultation to determine your best options and the cost of same.
15. What is an EcoSurvey?
An EcoSurvey is a simple way of you providing us with basic information in a useable manner, so that we can work out what your best options are. It's ‘Eco’ because it eliminates any unnecessary travel until you and we are both reasonably sure that your house will suit an EcoRoom.
16. Do I require planning permission for my EcoRoom?
EcoRooms are subject to the very same planning requirements as traditional extensions. If you are extending at the back of your house and haven’t extended your house previously, then you are entitled to extend your house floor area by up to 40m2 on the ground floor without planning permission. If you are in a situation where you do require planning permission, EcoRooms are complementary to most settings.
17. Can EcoRooms be used as garden buildings?
Absolutely. EcoRooms can be built as a striking stand-alone building in your garden and are ideal for home offices, games rooms, and living spaces such as granny flats or small self contained apartments.
18. Can EcoRooms be used for larger extensions or two story extensions?
The EcoRoom concept is ideally suited to larger extensions as the basic structure is extremely strong and durable, and used in multi-story commercial and institutional buildings. For such projects, planning permission is a routine requirement, and we can help you put together a planning application and plans for your EcoRoom extension.
19. How much internal floor space does the EcoRoom give?
For any given footprint for a building the EcoRoom will provide slightly more internal floor space than the same sized traditional built extension. For example, with a 12’ x 12’ external dimension, an EcoRoom will provide 4% more floor area than a traditional built building because the wall thickness does not have to be as thick to provide high levels of structural integrity, thermal and sound insulation.
20. Will my EcoRoom look right on my traditional built house?
Your EcoRoom extension can be custom designed to complement or match your house. Talk to our designers about this.
21. Will an EcoRoom be a good investment?
If you require additional space in your home an EcoRoom is a very good investment from a number of perspectives:
- aesthetically appealing building giving a distinctive look to the back of your house and garden will add to the resale value of your house
- because of the energy rating of the EcoRoom it will contribute positively to the Building Energy Rating of your house and improve its resale value
- more internal floor area than a traditional build
- significantly better insulation performance than is possible with a traditional build, and savings on energy usage throughout your life in the house
- very competitive cost versus traditional build
- speed and ease of build and minimum disruption to the house
22. How is the EcoRoom heated?
The EcoRoom is heated with a suitably sized thermostatically controlled electric radiator with a built in timer as standard, or it can be plumbed to use the house central heating system.
23. What is included in the electrics package?
3 double sockets, 2 wall light points and 1 ceiling light point and switches, and electric radiator as described.
24. How long does it take from order to commencement?
From sign off of order to delivery of building to site takes 4 weeks. This may vary with seasonal demand fluctuations.
25. Why is factory built better?
Simply, less waste, more control, more consistency, no weather related disruption or compromise, quicker to install, no weather related degradation of exposed timber and steel, more precision and accuracy, and more environmentally friendly.