Healthy Building Materials
Within the last couple of decades environmental health has become an increasingly important issue which has spearheaded a push towards homes and materials that are energy-efficient, sustainable, recycled/recyclable, locally produced and renewable.
Even with increased awareness in sustainable design, little attention was given to toxic chemicals that lurk in building and construction materials. But as scientific studies continue to link these chemicals to such health issues as allergies, asthma, cancer, reproductive disorders, foetal toxins, autism and obesity the issue is gaining much needed attention.
As it turns out, sustainable or energy-efficient does not equal healthy!
For example, products often recommended to insulate can be toxic (such as spray foam). Using shredded tire products or re-purposing something that is vinyl is not a good idea for inside the home.
Aluminum-framed windows can become an ongoing source of condensation and mould-related problems, which can be exacerbated by poor-building practices, such as the use of impermeable vapour wall wraps, inadequate vapour cavities and insufficient roof space or subfloor ventilation.
Building materials and construction is an important sector to consider when it comes to reducing your family’s exposure to environmental toxins, simply because you will be exposed to them on a daily basis and over many years. With millions of building products on the market today, it’s often difficult to know where to start. In addition, there is an overabundance of different claims of sustainable and healthier products: PVC-free, GECA certified, Global Green Tag certified, recycled content %, FSC, low VOC, etc.
This is where having a Healthy Building Materials and Design consultation can help and save time during your renovation or construction project.
What does it involve?
Depending on the size and requirements of your project we can work with you and your design-building team to:
Find and select materials and finishes that do not adversely impact indoor air quality, electroclimate or occupant’s health.
Give advice on drainage and water management features to prevent moisture and mould-related problems.
Provide guidance on how to minimise exposure to harmful electromagnetic fields (integrated into house design).
Recommend healthier heating/cooling systems and lighting.
Help implement non-chemical forms of pest management.
Choose most suitable water filtration system.
What will you get?
An initial interview over the phone followed by a site meeting to discuss the needs and requirements of the project and occupants.
Follow-up/on-going meetings and site visits if required.
A detailed report with solutions and recommendations based on the project brief (any of the above-listed aspects of home design and construction).
Follow up phone consultation(s).
Did you know?
Did you know that attached garages can significantly elevate indoor concentrations to toxic particles and gases such as carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, naphthalene and other carcinogens.