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Passive Designed House


Passive Designed House, 235 m. sq.

Year: 2014


Project overview:

235m2 Treated Floor Area, externally Insulated wall with 250mm insulation, 300mm floor insulation and 400mm cellulose insulation in attic with triple glazing pvc windows from Munster Joinery. Air tightness 0.56ACH N50. Design by Tim Horgan (Passive House Designer) and built by Tommie Finnegan,  Design criteria; not to exceed a heat load 10w/m2 on coldest day (2.35KW)! Installed Compact P with 2KW back up duct heater (duct heater is deactivated) and living room wood pellet stove. There is no underfloor and no radiator system in building and building has maintained +20C in winter 2014.


 Products installed:
  • Nilan Compact P with 2KW back up duct heater
    (duct heater is deactivated)
  • Wood pellet stove

Homeowner testimonial:


Compact P heat pump with 2KW back up duct heater and a pellet fuel in living room.

When we started planning to build in 2008 we never thought we would end up in a passive house – in fact, we didn’t even know what a passive house was. Delays of almost 2 years in planning meant we had a lot of time to research building methods and it was this reading in the Passive House magazine that led us to Maurice Falvey (who designed/supplied our heating system) and in turn Tim Horgan, and Tommie Finnegan who built the house for us.


All through the build we had our doubts. Like most Irish people we were terrified of being cold. We had lived in a house that was impossible to heat for 5 years and with an immersion water heating system that had to be assisted by kettles of boiling water just to have a bath. How different could we expect the new house to be?


On moving in in February 2014 we were completely won over by the system. Everything Maurice predicted came through. We now have a constant temperature throughout the house and spend our time in t-shirts. We have so much hot water that we offer guests tea, coffee or a shower and we get great joy in watching people strip off their layers of winter clothing when they come to visit. The running cost of the Heat Pump is so small that is almost insignificant – an insignificant cost for the most significant detail of the house.


Would I recommend Maurice and his system ! Without a doubt and with my hand on my heart, I can say that the Nilan system has changed our way of living. Not a day goes by when I am not thankful for the building choices we made, often guided by Maurice and Tim. We are living the dream and summer is no longer my favourite day of the year – summer temperatures in our house is the norm, not the exception.

Thank you Maurice.

Angie, Lei, Ri-Ann and Regan