Zane Raphael of Smith & Sons, renovation and extension specialists, moved his family into a 1960s Auckland home with plans to renovate and create a safe, healthy, dream home for his family. However, the urgency for the renovation increased dramatically when the family began to fall ill.
"We've visited the doctor more that year than we have in the past 10 years," says Zane. "Plus the house was very cold." Zane contacted Allan Mcintosh of Buildology, an Auckland based team of contemporary design and draughting experts.
Allan saw an opportunity to try something different and target the Homestar rating. "It is hard to explain to people the advantage of buying or building a well designed healthy home. The Homestar rating gives them some way to define the improvement."
They started looking for products which could help them achieve the Homestar rating. After rejecting building wrap and other products, they came across Ecoply Barrier.
Ecoply Barrier is a BRANZ appraised, weathertight rigid air barrier solution that also provides bracing. Ecoply Barrier contributes towards two of the four D's of weathertightness: drying and drainage. Ecoply Barrier complies with NZBC Clause B2 Durability.
Zane hadn't used Ecoply Barrier before, but quickly became an advocate: "Ecoply Barrier is a lot stronger than building wrap. I didn't have to worry about major or minor breaches in the building envelope. Plus the insulation we used is rigid polyester and this has been firmly pushed up against the barrier. If this were paper we could hinder the integrity of the building wrap if the staples were popped."
Zane was sold on one particular feature: "Ecoply Barrier is a fantastic product, the main benefit is down to the time it catapults a project forwards; it enables you to start on the inside quicker — saving approximately four weeks of building time."
This allowed Zane to work on the inside before the cladding had gone up, saving money on the build and the costs associated with running building sites.
For Allan, specifying Ecoply Barrier — or any product for that matter, meant that it had to reach his high expectations. "My criteria for product selection is that the product would need to be something I'd use in my own house: it's reliable, tested, trustworthy and the product has to be sustainable."
"I like Ecoply Barrier for the bracing it provides," he explains. "Besides, timber is a great, reliable product that has been around forever — and it's ethical and sustainable."
Zane summed it up: "We are really happy to be living in a way that's more energy efficient, environmentally aware, and self-sustainable."