Our houses are built out of cross-laminated panels, which are an innovation in the construction business. Wood is a natural material as well as a renewable source of energy and demonstrates excellent building qualities. Considering its volume, wood is a light material, however it is also very tough, solid and can bear heavy loads without deforming or incurring damages. As wood is also a good insulator, it can be used in energy-efficient construction.
You don’t need money to lead a better life. You just need to make THE DECISION and follow through!
HOUSES MADE OF CROSS-LAMINATED WOODEN PANELS ARE FOR EVERYONE WHO KNOWS WHAT THEY WANT.
→For people who want better quality living.
→For people who care what kind of environment they are creating with the use of natural materials.
→For people who care what kind of environment they are leaving for future generations.
→For people who recognise the advantages of using a construction material that has a beneficial impact on the environment.
→For people who value their health and well-being, as living in this type of house reduces the risk of certain types of diseases.
Conventional construction causes around 50% of all pollution and as much as 75% of this comes from the construction of residential homes. This percentage includes both the production of materials (the manufacture of cement, bricks, insulation materials, synthetic materials, etc.) and the construction of the building itself, its maintenance (heating, renovation) as well as the disassembly of all materials after demolition.
We can do the most to reduce environmental pollution by using natural materials in construction and by adapting the size of the building to our needs.
Wood has the smallest energy load of all the construction materials. By processing wood and using wooden products (as replacements for concrete, steel, brick, plastic and glass), we can significantly contribute to reducing CO2 emissions.
By simply burning wood (wood biomass), CO2 levels are not significantly lowered, but using wood that has been processed into wooden products does significantly contribute to the reduction of CO2 in the atmosphere, which is the main objective when dealing with climate change.
Wood is a product of photosynthesis and is made with the help of solar energy and the binding of CO2. Processing wood into products is simple and requires only a little energy, making it energy efficient. Wooden products extend the storage of CO2 over the period of their use. After being used, the spent wood products can then be used as biomass to obtain energy.
1m3 of wood stores 0.9t of CO2 and by replacing other materials with wood another 1.1t of CO2 is stored – meaning that 1m3 of wood REDUCES the level of CO2 in the air by 2 tonnes.
Wood is a natural material and the only renewable construction material. Slovenia has an extremely rich source of wood at its disposal, as over 60% of Slovenia is covered in forest, while only roughly 40% of the annual increment is used (cut down).
IF WE INCREASED THE PERCENTAGE OF NEWLY BUILT HOUSES MADE OF WOOD IN EUROPE BY 10%, WE COULD REDUCE CO2 LEVELS BY 25%.
Every year, we mark the day that we exceed the Earth’s CO2 “limit” – and every year it falls a few days earlier than the year before. Until 1970 we were living sustainably, but since then, mankind’s carbon footprint has doubled. This means that we would now need 1.6 Earths to meet our needs. If we continue in this manner, by 2030 we will have used as many natural resources as two Earths could provide. We have to drastically reduce carbon dioxide emissions if we want to stop this from happening.
Lower maintenance costs can be achieved by making use of smaller floor areas and effective wall insulation in an intelligent way.
Due to the good static characteristics and insulation, walls made of cross-laminated panels are thinner in comparison with those used in conventional construction. Thanks to the thinner walls you gain more useable floor space in your house.
Comparing two buildings with the same exterior dimensions and a floor area of 100m2, a wooden house has 8.5–10m2 MORE LIVING SPACE on account of the thinner walls that provide the same heat conductivity. That equals an additional room!
Wood as a material provides the best ratio between heat insulation and heat retention, thereby reducing heating costs.
Wood also acts a protectant against radiation and is therefore good for your health. Radiation that is present in our natural environment does not pose a threat to our health. However, large accumulations of radioactive material can be dangerous. Research has shown that, in comparison with concrete and brick houses, the radiation in wooden houses is similar to natural radiation.
The radioactive gas radon is the most dangerous, as it enters your lungs and causes lung cancer. It primarily seeps into buildings through the floor, and there are also smaller amounts in construction materials such as natural stone, clay, brick, plaster, etc. The least amount of radon comes from wood and wooden constructions.
Radon enters houses through cracks, joining elements or through the perforations in the foundation slab. An advantage of our houses are their solid walls where the perforations are covered up with a special impermeable protective adhesive tape, while the perforations in the foundation slab are covered with a special sealant.
It suffices to regularly air out living spaces to dissipate the normal natural concentration of radon that builds up.
The quality of the air affects our wellbeing as well as our ability to concentrate. Poor air quality is a common occurrence in rooms with poor or no ventilation. In spaces like these, higher air temperatures occur, in addition to high concentrations of carbon dioxide, damp, lack of oxygen, and in some cases also higher concentrations of radon. Living in such spaces is not only unpleasant, but can even be harmful.
The air in wooden houses is constantly flowing, has a suitable moisture level and is clean. This kind of favourable inside climate enables natural diffusion to take place through the wooden walls. The large wooden surfaces act as filters and provide good-quality air in the houses. The continuous ventilation prevents the growth of various bacteria and mould that otherwise develop on damp surfaces.
Buildings constructed from cross-laminated panels have excellent earthquake resistance and protection as the panels are very rigid and strong horizontally, which enables the building to withstand the forces of an earthquake better than a brick or skeleton framed wooden building. Wood reacts more elastically to the ground shaking and protects against mechanical damage to the house. The weight of the house is 4 to 5 times lower that conventional buildings, which means it incurs a smaller force from an earthquake. Watch the video.
Cross-laminated wooden panels are also significantly more fire-resistant than standard wooden construction elements. The wood is flammable, but in comparison with concrete and steel it can withstand greater fire loads. Cross-laminated panels are fireproof, catching fire only with difficulty, and burn only on the surface so that the inner wooden core retains its load bearing capability. The fire cannot advance more than 2 to 3 centimetres into the structure, at which point it runs out of oxygen to fuel the burning process. A sort of self-protective layer of charred wood forms on the surface of the burning laminated wood which prevents oxygen from reaching the wood, in turn stopping the fire from advancing (the picture depicts the charred outer layer with no damage to the core).
The reason for the cross-laminated panels’ good fire resistance is its poor heat conductivity. Wood’s ability to conduct heat is very poor, conducting it from 300 to 400 times slower than steel. It chars slowly, from the surface inwards, and the charring reduces the heat conductivity and prevents oxygen from reaching the wood.
Watch the video showing research of the fire safety of buildings made of cross-laminated panels. The person heading the research explains how the interior of the burning space reached 1000°C, while the exterior only reaches 20°C, making it possible for the people in the neighbouring space to easily survive the fire.
Reconstruction after a fire: The charred parts are removed up to the healthy living wood. Panels are then added, the thickness of which is calculated on the basis of a static calculation, and to which a final layer of the client’s choice is added.
Waterproofing is carried out on the exterior walls using XPS panels up to +0.5m above ground level. XPS panels are thermal insulation material that are waterproof and permanently protect the house from damp entering the house from the soil. The bottom two pictures illustrate how the polystyrene insulation is placed on the lower area up to a height of 0.5m, up to the level of waterproofing.
Wooden constructions are resistant against structural damage even when repeatedly wetted. In the event of a flood, the reconstruction of wooden houses is significantly faster, simpler and more effective than conventionally built houses. Cross-laminated panels are easier and quicker to dry than typical clay brick. The insulation and plaster panels also get wet in wooden houses, therefore after the floodwater has receded all that needs to be done is simply remove them half a metre above the water level. While the structure is open, it typically takes a month or two to dry out, in comparison to conventional buildings that take significantly longer to dry. After the drying is complete, the main wall structure is reclad with new plaster panels.
Building with cross-laminated panels allows for a high level of prefabrication and consequently short construction time. Residences are ready to be moved into as little as a few weeks from the start of construction. The wooden load-bearing components are prefabricated in the workshop, all that follows is the installation and final craft work. The wood is dried beforehand and it is therefore not necessary to wait for the building in its raw form to dry out, as is necessary for conventionally constructed buildings.
The wooden cross-laminated panels are dried to the suitable moisture level, which provides a natural protection against mould and which is maintained by keeping the wood dry using the appropriate waterproofing material and construction solutions.
The wood is protected from insects using the suitable insecticides. The solid wood walls prevent parasites from inhabiting the walls, as can happen in other types of construction, such as skeleton frame constructed houses.
Purbond one-component polyurethane adhesive is used to bind cross-laminated panels and utilises the naturally occurring moisture in the wood without the need for solvents and formaldehyde.
The Purbond adhesive is one of the most ecological adhesives and is also used in other products such as kitchen counters and in medicine. It was developed by Bayer. The adhesive is completely safe and utilises the naturally occurring moisture in the wood to bind elements together. As the adhesive does not contain formaldehyde or solvents, it does not have any harmful effects for people, and the laminated structures are comparable to natural solid wood. The adhesive is odourless and, due to its excellent binding capability, is economical to use.
Thanks to the cross orientation of the slats and their resulting stability, the interior finalisation of the wooden cross-laminated panels is completely customisable, while thermal insulation and a façade can be clad on the exterior. This type of modern wooden house cannot be told apart from a conventionally constructed building and can be placed anywhere, while its exterior architectural appearance is designed to fit into its surroundings.
A Native American saying goes, “If you want to be healed, move into a wooden house”.
Wood is a natural building material and has all the characteristics necessary to create a favourable living environment: it acts as a thermal insulation material, regulates moisture in the air, does not have an electrostatic charge, and has a high surface temperature and a pleasant smell, while not emitting any toxic substances. Constructing with wood ensures the highest health and living standards of modern society. The positive energy that wood exudes fills people with a fresh surge of energy, which is ever more important in today’s fast lifestyle.