NEW Free Sustainable Building Guides


Be one of the first to use these new sustainable building guides

  • These superbly illustrated sustainable building booklets are suitable for builders and other construction professionals.
  • Learn how to improve the quality of your new home or extension and make better decisions on site and in design.
  • The guides have been produced to address the top issues arising from reviews of twenty-seven live building sites in UK and produced in collaboration with FMB, LABC, NHBC, CITB, HBF and more.

Click on the images below to download

Why is this important?

We have seen the scrapping of the Green Deal and the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund plus time extensions to the Energy Companies Obligation and In July’s budget last year the Chancellor George Osborne removed all existing zero carbon home targets and shelved the target for all new non-domestic buildings to be zero carbon from 2019 so there is more than a suggestion that there’s a clear lack of Government commitment to improve the energy efficiency of UK homes.

As a result of such positioning the death knell was sounded for the Zero Carbon Hub (ZCH) which officially closed on the 31st March this year.

ZCH was established as a public/private body in 2008 to help translate the then Government’s target for all new homes to be zero carbon from 2016 into practicable regulation, and to remove the barriers to its implementation. Over the eight years of its existence the Hub supported the new homes’ industry in the delivery of the zero carbon homes' programme and oversaw the successful introduction of higher energy efficiency standards.

What is the ZCH legacy?

Although the ZCH is closed some of the excellent work it carried out is still available in published guides. The last few guides were published just before closure in March and we have collected them together (with a couple of others for interest) and listed them below by title with a brief synopsis and a link to download the PDF for free.

These guides are extremely well researched and contain a wealth of practical and technical information. We have selected the ones below from the many that the ZCH published because we believe they are relevant to our customers and will provide invaluable help to builders and self builders alike in maintaining the ambition of carbon reduction through building design and construction.

NEW: SAP Untangled

SAP Untangled

Aimed at the SME Builder (and Self Builder) and gives an overview of the Building Regulations Part L1A compliance process with respect to the SAP calculation. This Guide is intended as a basic introduction to the SAP assessment process and the information required by the assessor and Building Control in order to achieve compliance with certain aspects of Building Regulations Part L1A and the successful production of an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for the home.

Published March 2016

NEW: Building Services

Services Guide

This good practice guide aims to improve the standard of building services in new homes. The information is aimed at SME builders, self builders  and their advisors, but there will be parts relevant to other building professionals. The scope is limited to focus on the major problems around design and installation of services that affect the comfort, indoor air quality and energy performance of new homes.

Large File 13Mb

Published March 2016

NEW: Thermal bridging

Thermal Bridging Guide

This document provides a simple guide to what thermal bridging is,  the key construction details in new build housing where thermal bridging is particularly significant, examples of ways in which heat loss can be reduced by changes to the design and construction of these details, and the problem areas to avoid on site. It is intended to help designers and builders focus on the key decisions that they can affect around junction detailing which will have a direct bearing on the performance of the new homes they help to deliver.

Published March 2016

 The builders' Book 

Builders Book

A good craftsmanship guide that highlights key construction details when building a new home, and good practice for delivering them. The book aims to improve the quality of new homes built, especially with regards to comfort levels and energy bills. It helps builders improve site processes to deliver better performing homes and reduce the risk of condensation and mould growth, excessive heat loss and failure to meet building regulations.

Large File 14Mb

Published July 2015

NEW: Solutions to Overheating in Homes

Solutions to Overheating in Homes

This Evidence Review produced by BRE for the Zero Carbon Hub describes the range of technical and behavioural solutions available to reduce the risk of overheating in UK homes. The review covers a wide range of possible measures from town planning and building positioning, layout and orientation through to building fabric, windows, ventilation, to the actions of individual occupants. As such it covers issues relating to the local environment and neighbourhood as well as to the individual dwellings.

Published March 2016

Ventilation in New Buildings

Ventilation in New Buildings

The Zero Carbon Hub visited 33 dwellings across 6 construction sites in 2015 to see how effectively their mechanical ventilation systems were designed, installed, commissioned and handed over to occupants. This report presents the findings from the site visits anonymously. It is intended for those with an interest in assuring the quality of delivery of ventilation systems, including government policy makers, developers and their advisers.

Published February 2016




We were alerted to the possibility of  hosting these guides by our friends at The Green Register, our thanks to them for tipping us off, please visit their website to find professionals who are active in the sustainable and green building sector.

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