Switching from brick and block to timber frame panels
If you are considering a change from site-built brick or block construction to pre-engineered timber frame panels, you should expect some changes in how you go about doing business.
Build times are half or less because much of the work has already been done in the factory. All that remains after the foundation has been poured is to crane the pre-engineered wall panels into place, and seal the joints. The time savings means faster turnaround on your investment. You won’t need as many skilled trades
Close timber frame panels come with insulation, air and vapour barriers installed. Some have factory-fitted windows. This means much less reliance of expensive trade specialists.
Hitting sustainability targets is easier
The first step in hitting high levels of the Code for Sustainable Homes is deciding which panel design you want to order. Building fabric is key to hitting levels 4, 5 and 6, and the heavy engineering is done at the factory. Panels come in various configurations, or we can custom design the panel, depending on your carbon targets. When considering embodied energy, the carbon sequestered by the wood in a timber panel can be added to the equation.
Life on-site is different
Closed panel systems means four-season construction is possible. The buildings are closed to the weather much more quickly, and the wall assembly is done inside at the factory.
Are there savings to be made?
Timber frame panels are much lighter than brick or block. This means potential savings by reducing the strength of the foundation slab, for example. You will find that highly-insulated, well-sealed timber frame panels hold the heat very well, and you may be able to downsize mechanical systems as a result. Energy modelling software can help you find other savings in your standard house models.
Not as much clean up on site
You won’t have to devote as much time or energy to on-site cleanliness. Factory pre-engineered timber panels significantly reduce the amount of construction waste and keeps sites cleaner.