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What is the difference and why is the Solverter system better than traditional solar panels? ×

Solverter in the solar function does not overheat (does not require cooling and does not degrade glycol) and is invisible (it is part of the roof hidden under the sheet metal).

Is the Solverter system suitable for a multi-slope roof? ×

Yes, but in this type of roofs there is quite a large amount of panel waste due to the need to cut the slopes.

What is the price of Solverter system? ×

The price is calculated based on individual conditions, the most important of which are: roof surface absorbing heat, thermal insulation of the building, length and number of collectors, number and capacity of heat buffers, heat pump power, etc.

What does it mean and why is the Solverter system commonly called a "roof heat pump"? ×

The heat pump is a device that has been known for years. In this cooling function, we all know it as “refrigerator” . In the heating function, this device has been used for several decades in the direct and indirect system. To differentiate, for marketing purposes, the pumps were divided into "air" (a system of direct heat collection through a gas exchanger placed outside buildings) and "ground" (a system of indirect heat collection through a glycol-filled exchanger buried in the ground). We introduced the term "roof pump" to distinguish the method of energy collection. In this system, thermal energy is collected in an indirect system by a glycol-filled exchanger placed in the roof.

Are Solcraft systems included in the subsidy system? ×

Solcraft products are among those that increase the thermal insulation of buildings, so they can be an element of thermal modernization subject to subsidies. Thexpan roofs, in turn, are an element that may be eligible for subsidies for thermal modernization, solar water heating, heat pump systems and a sound-free heat pump exchanger.

Is there a risk of overheating in Thexpan panels in summer? ×

No, the glycol in Thexpan panels does not reach a temperature higher than the temperature of the roofing sheet. Even on the sunniest days, the roof temperature is close to 80 degrees Celsius.

Does the Solverter system work at night, in winter or when there is no sun? ×

Yes. This is a system dedicated to situations when the sun is not shining. Regardless of the season, it extracts thermal energy from the air and powers the heat pump. When the sun is shining, the system draws energy from the sun's rays heating the roof sheet. Then (regardless of the season), the heat pump is in the "waiting" state and turns on when there is too little thermal energy.

On what kind of foundations can Solcraft buildings be erected? ×

Solcraft buildings can be built on almost any type of foundation. Starting from traditional, to the foundation slab, linear foundations, point foundations - brick, screwed, etc. Detailed solutions can be found in the details catalog: https://solcraft.pl/web/files/27462/H-Block-technical-details.pdf

How are installations in H-Block buildings carried out? ×

It is not recommended to groove H-Block® panels to obtain channels for electrical and plumbing installations. In the case of walls, it is possible to make a wooden or aluminum frame, distribute cables or pipes in the space obtained, and then cover it with plasterboard or internal paneling. Double GK cladding of H-Block walls is also possible - then in the first layer, channels for the electrical installation are created and covered with the second layer of GK. In the case of ceilings and roofs, it is possible to make a suspended ceiling or also double plasterboard. Detailed drawings of the above solutions can be found in the details catalog: https://solcraft.pl/web/files/27462/H-Block-technical-details.pdf

Can the Thexpan®/Thermonrt® roof shape be changed? ×

The shape of the Thermont / Thexpan roof cannot be changed. The ribs on the roof have been specially designed so that the piping receives heat from the roof with the largest possible surface. In the case of Thermont panels, the place for the pipes is filled with polyurethane.

Can roof windows be installed in the Thexpan® / Thermont® roof? How? ×

Yes, but not wider than 66 cm as they must fit within the slab module (1.1 m). Installation takes place in a hole cut in the roof, to the so-called wooden (frame) replacement. In the case of Thexpan® panels (with piping), it is necessary to determine the location of the windows at the design stage to avoid collisions between the window and the piping.

Is a roof truss or additional insulation needed for the Thexpan® / Thermont® roof? ×

Roof truss is needed but reduced to a minimum. In most gable roofs, a ridge, fins and cap will suffice. The roof itself is warm and does not require any insulation.

Can I choose the color of the roof? ×

Yes, you can from the sheet metal manufacturer's palette.

How does Thermont® panel differ from ordinary sandwich panel? ×

It differs in:

·       the secret-fix – the fastener is hidden under the "clip"; 

·       the density of the polyurethane core - Thexpan® / Thermont® has 42 kg/m3 and others 30-32 kg/m3); 

·       the possibility of using panels in roofs with a slope of less than 5 degrees; 

·       the passive properties – Thexpan®/Thermont® can be additionally sealed and the sealing tape is hidden under the "clip". No other sandwich panels have such hidden systems.

Do we provide a guarantee for the panels? What is their service life? ×

Yes, the sheet metal is guaranteed by the sheet manufacturer. We provide our own warranty for the panels.

Can you install photovoltaic panels on Thermont® / Thexpan® panels? How? ×

Yes you can. There are several mounting solutions. There is a possibility of traditional "drilling" through the roof and fixing the panels to wooden elements. The "non-perforating" solution for Thermont® / Thexpan® panels is the installation of the substructure of the panels to the roof clips, for example with the use of special grips.

Will the metal plate rust after some time? What then? ×

The metal sheets used in Thermont® / Thexpan® panels are the same as in case of traditional metal sheet roofs. Producers of these sheets give 10-year guarantees. In fact, their rust resistance is much longer - up to 20 years. After the exploitation period, the sheet metal cover is replaced with a new one. In case of Thexpan® or Thermont® panels, a secondary sheet metal covering can be laid over the existing roof or simply the sheet can be protected by painting while in service. In this way, the roof with Thexpan® / Thermont® panels can be used for decades.

Can I hear when it rains in a building with Thexpan® / Thermont® roof? ×

Yes, you can hear the intense and violent rain a bit, but incomparably less to the metal sheet or the roof window. By filling these plates with polyurethane, the effect of a resonance box is not created.

I have a construction team. Can it handle the installation of Solcraft systems? ×

Of course!

In addition to creating products that will give buildings the best thermal insulation, we also focus on making them, simply speaking,…. "IDIOT-PROOF".

The assumption is this - the system should be simple to minimize the potential number of errors on the construction site. The fewer pieces, the less cutting, the less work, the safer.

Before starting construction, it is necessary to read the construction manual for H-Block® / Thermont / Thexpan systems, available in the downloadable materials on our website. All the projects that we adapt are carefully drawn on panels that are already numbered and sent to the construction site. We also offer the possibility of free training of construction crews as well as help and advice at every stage of implementation. We develop all projects and systems to such a state that they are quick and easy to build for everyone!

How much is a house with an area of about 80-100 m2? ×

A one-story or two-story house? Flat / double / hipped roof? With or without a garage? Gas / electric / other heating? Aluminum / wooden / other windows? What heat standard and insulation? e.t.c.

There is only one answer - IT DEPENDS!

We treat all clients and their projects very individually. Each house is unique and our professionalism does not allow us to provide an average price. Therefore, we encourage you to send us specific projects, on the basis of which we will prepare a free valuation of our systems and we will send you an offer for its implementation from one of our partner companies with the exact specification of the elements that are included.

I have a project in brick / wooden technology - can I still do it in the Solcraft system? ×

Of course!

Does Solcraft have ready-made building designs? ×

We do not have an architectural department in our company and we do not create custom-made projects. As part of the service, however, we always adapt projects to our technology and prepare a structural design along with assembly documentation.

Does Solcraft only produce building systems or does it also build objects in the its systems? ×

As Solcraft, we are "only" and, above all, the manufacturer of building systems. We specialize in the development and implementation of highly energy-saving building systems, such as H-Block® or Thexpan. We are committed to the continuous improvement of our products and the introduction of new solutions to the market in order to further contribute to sustainable development and minimum energy consumption. This is what we focus on.

The construction in our systems is carried out by our partner companies and customers on their own. Of course, we offer the possibility of free training of construction crews as well as help and advice at every stage of implementation. We develop all projects and systems to such a state that they are quick and easy to build for everyone!

Will rodents infest the polyurethane foam? ×

Rodents as well as insects do not like this material very much. We are not aware of any case in which rodents have destroyed polyurethane foam and thus our board.

What is the price per m2? ×

First of all, price per m2 of what? House, industrial hall, office building, H-Block® panels, Thexpan panels...?

If the question regards the whole building, then it can be compared to the question "How much does the car cost?" As with the car, the answer is "What kind?" Even if you specify the brand and model of your car, the final price depends on the engine, equipment and many other factors.

If the question concerns the panel, the answer is "Which panel?" - type, thickness of the core, dimensions, quantity, etc.

To sum up:

Solcraft manufactures H-Block®, Thexpan, Thermont and Frigothex panels BUT is not a contractor and therefore does not build facilities in its systems. Therefore, it cannot quote the price for the entire facility.

All panels produced by Solcraft are made to measure for a specific project and a specific customer. They are not in stock and are not sold "off the shelf". This allows for quick construction from ready-made elements, minimizes the number of transports and the amount of waste on site.

Due to the production "made to measure", the cost of each board per m2 is different. It depends, inter alia, the level of use of the press, labor consumption and repeatability of elements.

The cost estimation of our panels dedicated to the specific building is free of charge, so in order to avoid guesswork, we invite you to send inquiries by e-mail, telephone or via the contact form. It costs nothing and allows you to get a precise answer to the question "How much does it cost?".

Are buildings in Solcraft systems more expensive than traditional ones? ×

Buildings in Solcraft systems are buildings with a very low energy demand, so their cost should be considered in the perspective of years, not months (construction time).

The durability of insulation products has a significant impact on the life cycle of a building in terms of costs. Approximately 70% of these costs relate to the operational phase of the building, with the lion's share of the costs for heating and cooling. If the insulation product does not maintain its performance over time and the heat transfer through the building envelope increases, energy costs can increase significantly [1].

Solcraft buildings are not only characterized by a high level of insulation and air tightness, but also use renewable energy sources. In order to meet the energy-saving requirements, they must be additionally equipped with, among others, appropriate quality windows and ventilation system. It is therefore important to achieve the optimal balance between energy savings and investment costs.

If it is already necessary to compare Solcraft buildings with other technologies, you should always pay attention to the parameters they represent. In other words, it's good to "compare apples to apples" rather than watermelon. For example, the costs of the shell of a brick building and the Solcraft building cannot be compared, because the difference in the levels of wall insulation does not allow it (U of a ceramic block with a thickness of 28 cm = 1.0 W / m2K vs. U of an H-Block® panel with a total thickness of 23 cm = 0.10 W / m2K - 10-fold difference !!!)

The payback periods for Solcraft energy-efficient buildings can vary, but with current energy prices, they should not be longer than 10 years. With the increase in energy prices, additional investments will pay off even faster in the future.

Are buildings in Solcraft systems unhealthy? ×

We may not realize it, but polyurethane (one of the basic constituent parts of Solcraft® panels) is present all around us:

  • in the soles of shoes,
  • in mattresses,
  • in steering wheels,
  • in the bumpers,
  • in refrigerators,
  • in hot water tanks,
  • in medical equipment,
  • in upholstery products
  • in clothing
  • and many other.

Polyurethane is safe and chemically inert. PUR is not classified as hazardous and no exposure limits have been established for it. PUR insulation products have extremely low indoor air emissions and easily achieve the highest rating in countries where safety testing and classification is practiced. The low permeability of PUR prevents interstitial condensation. PUR is not affected by the growth of mold or house dust mites, thus avoiding the related health problems. [1]

The OSB 3 boards we use have a low formaldehyde content, comparable to the content of this substance in natural wood, which has been confirmed by independent external tests, as well as by CE marking confirming compliance with the EN 13986 standard. [2] Some of them are glued without the use of formaldehyde. [3]

Additionally, the boards are not exposed directly to the exhibition. They are hidden under the surface of plasterboards and often also mineral wool, which creates a barrier to formaldehyde.

We are exposed to formaldehyde to a much greater extent through direct contact with our furniture. It is also used as a raw material in the production of many dyes, synthetic resins, in tanning, photography and as a disinfectant.

[1] The benefits of polyurethane insulation. Today's solution for tomorrow's needs https://www.pu-europe.eu/library/pu-europe-factsheets/

[2] EGGER OSB 3 - A PROFESSIONAL CHOICE FOR WOOD CONSTRUCTION https://www.egger.com/shop/pl_PL/building/product-detail/OSB3#downloads

[3] https://www.egger.com/shop/pl_PL/building/product/OSBBOARDS /

What is the fire resistance of buildings? ×

Fire needs oxygen

According to the rules of physics, fire needs oxygen to exist. Houses in the H-Block® system are very airtight, so the fire will not have its own oxygen source.

The structural timber is planed

The structural timber is planed, so the tongues of any fire "slide" over its surface, so it is harder to ignite. Moreover, in a fire a large wooden beam, either made of solid wood or crafted from wood, performs better than a steel beam. The steel beam loses its strength at around 315 degrees Celsius, while the wooden beam continues to function. Charring or burning a few millimeters of the wooden beam provides insulation against further damage. [1]

Polyurethane behind a GK and mineral wool barrier

In most cases, insulation is used behind barriers in the form of plasterboard, facade, roofing and is only a secondary factor in the event of a fire. Its fire behavior should always be assessed as part of the overall structure. Although PUR insulation is classified as a combustible material, it will not smolder, melt or drip when heated. In fact, it can increase the resistance of a building to the spread of fire. [2]

Mainly what is inside burns

Fire is usually ignited by residents, so mainly what is in the building (furniture, curtains etc.) is on fire, so the point is to maximize the time it takes to cover the entire house, especially its structure.

Get insurance

There are no non-flammable things - everything is a matter of time and temperature, so do not think that the policy against random events is an unnecessary expense.

[1] http://budujzdrewna.pl/technologia/odpornosc-ogniowa/zagadnienie-pozarow-w-domach-z-drewna

[2] The benefits of polyurethane insulation. Today's solution for tomorrow's needs https://www.pu-europe.eu/library/pu-europe-factsheets/

Will buildings in Solcraft systems "fall over" during the windstorm? ×

Let these videos answer this question:

Do Solcraft buildings "breathe"? ×

First of all, there is no such term as "BREATHABILITY" referring to a building!

Some market participants argue that airtight building structures create an unhealthy indoor climate. They call for the use of "breathable" building elements and the use of "breathable" thermal insulation products. Only they managed to combine thermal insulation with protection against moisture, and the removal of moisture and hazardous substances through air exchange.

Such statements are confusing and many phenomena have been combined under the term "breathability". Building physics and standardization do not use this term, but separate the relevant phenomena:

  • Condensation of water vapor on internal surfaces
  • Buffering moisture inside building elements
  • Water vapor diffusion through external building elements
  • Moisture transport by massive air exchange and controlled ventilation.
  • Researches show that comfortable and healthy buildings need an adequate level of thermal insulation and controlled mass air exchange through ventilation. However, it is
  • not important whether the used thermal insulation products are diffusion open or diffusion tight. [1]

Polyurethane foam provides excellent levels of insulation and meets the requirements of low-energy buildings. The mechanical ventilation system (usually recuperation) is responsible for the ventilation of the building, not the building's insulation / construction materials.

More information on this can be found at the PU link below

[1] “Breathability” of building elements CONDITION OF A HEALTHY AND COMFORTABLE INDOOR AIR CLIMATE? https://www.pu-europe.eu/library/pu-europe-factsheets/

Will the building in Solcraft systems rot? ×

Any building that is not ventilated will be destroyed by fungi and molds. Others will destroy the brick house, others will destroy the wooden house. If the Solcraft building is constructed in accordance with the construction art, no fungi will appear. Just as in a brick house - there must be an efficient ventilation system.

Condensation of water vapor on cold surfaces inside a building can be a substrate for the formation of mold. This can be prevented in the best way by adequately efficient thermal insulation of the building. Particular attention should be paid to avoiding thermal bridges, as they can cause local condensation even in an otherwise well-insulated building. [1] Solcraft buildings are characterized by solutions that eliminate the formation of thermal bridges (e.g. joints of H-Block® panels with LHB connectors filled with polyurethane foam instead of wooden poles).

The closed-cell PUR foam used in Solcraft systems offers the added benefit of reducing the risk of condensation in the insulation layer. Open-cell insulations may require the use of additional membranes. The same applies to other commonly used insulation materials.

Indoor humidity levels vary depending on the outdoor climate and the indoor situation. The moisture buffering effects of the surface layers on building elements can help to maintain a relatively stable level of moisture. Research has shown that thermal insulation plays a marginal role here as the buffering effect is essentially limited to the top layer which is in direct contact with the air inside the room. Accordingly, the use of water vapor open or "breathable" insulation will not constitute an advantage. Excess moisture in the indoor air must be removed by controlled ventilation. Even under extreme conditions, the exchange of moisture by diffusion ("breathability") through the building envelope may only account for a fraction of the total air exchange required [2].

[1] “Breathability” of building elements CONDITION OF A HEALTHY AND COMFORTABLE INDOOR AIR CLIMATE? https://www.pu-europe.eu/library/pu-europe-factsheets/

[2] “Breathability” of building elements CONDITION OF A HEALTHY AND COMFORTABLE INDOOR AIR CLIMATE? https://www.pu-europe.eu/library/pu-europe-factsheets/

Are closed-cell foam in Solcraft systems and open-cell foam in spray systems the same? ×

Polyurethane foam is a cellular product. The number of closed and open cells significantly affects the properties and parameters of the product as well as the end use. While closed-cell foam should contain more than 90% closed-cell, there is no official definition of open-cell foam in Europe. A typical open-cell system should be less than 20% closed cells. [1]

The table below shows a comparison of some parameters of the open-cell and closed-cell foam

Property Closed-cell Open-cell
Closed cell content ≥ 90 % < 20 %
Thermal conductivity 0.026-0.028 W/m·K 0.035-0.042 W/m·K
Reaction to water Long-term water absorption < 2 % Not recommended for applications where direct contact with water is possible
Water vapor diffusion resistance coefficient (μ) Average vapor permeability 50 < μ < 150 High vapor permeability μ < 15
Air flow resistance Closed-cell foam helps to increase the air tightness of the building Open-cell foam can help to increase the airtightness of a building at greater thicknesses
Compressive strength 170-500 kPa 5-30 kPa
Resilience and stiffness Higher strength and stiffness, high density increase the strength of the load-bearing elements of the building Lower strength and stiffness do not increase the strength of the load-bearing elements of the building
Density 35-60 kg/m3 8-15 kg/m3
Sound absorption coefficient Medium sound absorption 0.3 High sound absorption 0.5
Reaction to fire Generally E F
Foaming factor Physical foaming factor CO2, water

More on the differences between the above-mentioned foams can be found at the link below: here

How long is the life span of Solcraft buildings? ×

30-year-old samples of polyurethane foam were tested, the results of which can be found at the following link: PU

The results showed that polyurethane foam not only did not lose its properties over time, but even improved its insulation parameters.

The first SIP buildings built in the 1930s are still in use, so "the clock is still ticking". Laboratory tests in the USA have shown the durability of SIP panels at the level of approx. 300 years. The key to the longevity of this type of buildings is their correct installation (e.g. protection against moisture) and operation (e.g. proper air exchange).

Can Solcraft buildings be large / multi-story? ×

SIP panels, which are the inspiration for the creation of H-Block®® panels, are widely used in the USA, Japan and the UK for the construction of large facilities due to their thermal properties, speed of installation, etc. A few examples can be found on the website of the largest association of various SIP market stakeholders - SIPA - of which we are a member:

In the H-Block® system, it is possible to build buildings up to 4 storeys without an additional wooden structure. By using H-Block® panels as a filling of a wooden structure, even greater heights can be achieved.

In case of Thermont and Thexpan panels, the supporting structure is usually a steel structure and only its load-bearing capacity limits the designers' imagination.

Are buildings in Solcraft systems acoustical? ×

The light structure of the ceiling in the H-Block® system is indeed more acoustic than the reinforced concrete ceiling, but this does not mean that on the ground floor you can hear everything that is happening on the first floor. If we apply a dry screed (equivalent to a screed) in the attic or first floor, the sound transmission through the ceiling will be comparable to brick buildings.

The acoustics of the walls tightly filled with polyurethane foam are additionally improved thanks to a 5 cm layer of mineral wool filling the void between OSB and GK.

Research has shown that the weighted sound reduction coefficient (Rw) of an H-Block® panel with a PUR thickness of 140 mm is 31 dB. When double-sided OSB boards (12.5 mm and 9.5 mm) are used in partition walls, the weighted sound reduction coefficient (Rw) is 58 dB.

Do buildings in the H-Block® system creak? ×

Well-built H-Block® houses don’t creak. Creaking is the result of the OSB boards rubbing against each other. Therefore, a dilatation - a gap of approx. 3 mm wide, should be left between the boards, so that the boards have space for work. If they get moisture from the air - they will have room to expand. If they become dry during the heating season - the minimum gap will not be visible anyway. What's more - H-Block® boards are mounted using high-quality SCREWS, not nails!

Is it true that Solcraft buildings are cold because they have no thermal inertia? ×

The lack of thermal inertia is an ADVANTAGE, not a disadvantage.

As a result, only the air in the building is heated, not its walls. This makes it easier to control the temperature inside the building.

Brick buildings heat up very slowly. Those in Solcraft systems will heat up in 30-60 minutes, so the heaters may be turned off all the time when you are not at home.

If the night temperatures drop to almost zero degrees C and during the day they increase by a dozen or so degrees, the Solcraft building is heated only in the evening, while in the brick building, to obtain the same comfort, the stove usually works around the clock.

Does the Solcraft building get cold quickly? ×

Because Solcraft buildings do not have thermal inertia, they cool down a bit faster than traditional technology houses. However, this does not mean that the temperature drops very quickly. In 24 hours the temperature drops by 2-3 degrees in cold winter. Solcraft buildings are THERMODYNAMIC!

Can gas heating be used in Solcraft buildings? ×

Any type of heating can be used as a heating installation - the question is which one will be the most economical.

Can a fireplace be installed in Solcraft buildings? ×

A fireplace can be built in a Solcraft building completely safely - it only requires a different method of protection against high temperatures.

Old wooden buildings also had stoves, without a closed fireplace insert. They often heat up to this day.

Are Solcraft buildings harmful to the environment? ×

Polyurethane production is mainly fossil-based, but polyurethane insulation uses less than 0.04% of the world's annual oil consumption.

During its lifetime, polyurethane insulation saves over 100 times more energy than was used to produce it. It is produced without the use of ozone depleting gases, and at the end of its life, it can be recycled in some cases or used in the energy recovery process, further reducing our energy needs from fossil fuels (the share of renewable content in polyurethane insulation products can now be as high as twenty %).

The production of Solcraft boards requires less energy and raw materials than traditional building materials. This means that the waste generated during production is reduced already in the first stage of construction.

Professional computer software optimizes the consumption parameters of the panels at the building design stage in order to ensure the minimum amount of waste.

The low weight and thickness of the Solcraft plates makes it possible to reduce the number of transports and therefore the amount of fuel used and emissions.

Compared to traditional construction, we deal with lower consumption of electricity and water on the construction site.

Can kitchen cabinets be hung in H-Block® buildings? ×

It can be done in several ways. For example, a rack for mounting cabinets is screwed to wooden posts (at the ends of the building, next to doors and windows) and kitchen cabinets are hung on it.

Another way is to mount the cabinets directly to good quality plasterboard. Tests showed that the cabinet attached directly to the GK board (Rigips) was damaged when loaded with 150 kg - the fixing to the wall was not damaged.

Light items can be hung on a driven nail (a hammer is enough for this), a little heavier on an ordinary screw (an ordinary screwdriver is enough), and items weighing up to 20 kg on a Drywall dowel (the simplest screwdriver is enough, not a drill with a hammer).

Will there be a hole after kicking the wall of the H-Block® building? ×

We suggest not to kick the walls, but if it is necessary or results from an uncontrolled outburst of sudden anger, we advise you to get a plaster ... hospital plaster.

And for the unconvinced, a test performed at our factory - just in case, we tried to force more than "ordinary kick"

Can bathtubs be installed on H-Block® ceilings? ×

Yes, otherwise, Americans would not be bathing.

Will bark beetles eat up buildings in the H-Block® system? ×

The bark beetle - as the name suggests - lives under the bark. The wood used in Solcraft buildings must be chamber-dried, which means that the seeds of mold, fungi and insects die in the drying process. Moreover, the wood is planed and the bark beetles do not "bite" into the smooth surface. Instead, they have a lot of live trees around the building that are much easier to bite into.