Not sure this is the right place, but I hope so. Our architect is
designing our family house according to my requests. We live in Finland,
where the recommendations and directives for energy-effective
construction just got tighter. Outside temperatures go from -35C to +30C
(-31F to +85F).
I'd like to fit my upstairs windows with external roller shutters, in
order to keep the bedrooms cool and dark in the summer days (and nights,
since the sun sets 11PM and rises at 3 AM . The use of the roller
shutters here is a bit controversial during the winter, since they can
froze still and remain closed for 6 months... I haven't found a single
family house fitted with metallic roller shutters in Finland, and
apparently no one seems to sell them here either. "In Finland, do as the
Finns do" you could argue, but I want to do a bit differently.
I found interesting shutters from Germany
(http://www.wiral.de/seiten/katalog/rolladen.htm ), where the shutters
also provide noise and temperature isolation. So the question goes to
- how usual is it to fit windows with roller shutters in new buildings
in your country ? All comments and suggestions are also welcome.
Quite common, where I'm originally from, Florida.
In fact, they are sort of required.
The are supposed to be for protection from flying debris from
There, the building code requires either 200 mph glass in all exterior
windows, or fixed or removeable shielding, ie., shutters or removeable
What we have here is a clash of building codes.
The code requires the protection but it also requires egress windows
in sleeping rooms.
So what you end up with are lazy people installing the removeble
panels on the egress windows and not taking them off after the threat
of the hurricane passes, effectively removing access to the egress
windows from inside.
In your case I'd be concerned with freezing and ice build-up on the
rollers and tracks.
Also, the cost of the roll-up shutters is prohibitively expensive,
traditionally seen only on very expensive homes.
My home was about 2000 sq ft and the cost for shutters was more than
$30,000.00 and they weren't even eelectrically powered, strictly
If you are trying to increase the efficiency of your new home by
limiting the amount of sunshine through the windows, and the outside
noise, discuss these concerns with your designer as I believe there
are less expensive and perhaps even better ways to address these
things, such as orientation of rooms or windows and roof overhangs for
example, just to name a couple.
Don's thing about the 200 MPH requirement is due to Florida being
hurricane central USA, and the insurance industry pushed through the
requirement to limit their losses paying out on insurance claims for
broken windows. Since Finland probably doesn't see much in the way of
hurricanes, and breaking glass is not the issue, you don't need to
have the shutters on the outside of the building.
Have the shutters on the inside, or built into the wall, so they won't
freeze. A pretty standard thing in hot climates, which is
surprisingly similar in its requirements to a cold climate, is to have
the shutters fold out from the extra-deep wall thickness - the
shutters appear to be paneled window jamb extensions.
Good idea, interior insulated shutters.
Never heard of them though, does somebody manufacture them?
We had wood louvered interior plantation shutters on our FL house but
they were more for looks than anything else.
hello Lorenzo-With new construction its very easy to
install"pocket"windows and shutters.I have built up some for my place
to deal with the seasonal differences we have here in SW Pennsylvania
in the US.All of the various panes are at least 6" larger than the
opening ,so I get a good seal,and when the shutter panels are closed,I
have equal or greater R value at the windows as in the walls.The
screen panel gives better ventilation than same sized double-hung or
casement windows.I put these together for less than I could have
bought hi-end insulated windows because with the ability to either
close a separate"storm window"glass pane or just close the shutter,I
dont need the hi R values or the low E glass. The low performance
glass panel actually allows me to soak up more solar heat on my S side
in the winter,then as soon as the gain drops off ,the shutter can be
closed-allowing me to retain the gain.The 6"+ oversize on all sides-
closer to 12" with the solid shutter panel yield great security
also,as it would be easier to gain entrance thru a wall than thru the
windows.I have a electric and a pneumatic actuator for 3 panels rigged
up-strictly prototype stage and would like to automate via an old
computer and sensors to transmit insolation and delta T data.These
could be retrofit,but would require a much bigger rough opening for
the same sized window,new or additional header,jack studs etc.In new
construction it would be easy although the number of panels I have in
mine requires an 8"wall,but I have 3 additional panels that are
"optional".If anyone manufactures these I haven't found them,and I
would assume the novelty would make the price astronomical-but they
need not be-tracks are easy to find or build-up and all the other
panels are stationary-type, low performance glass and the shutter
panels dont need to be elaborate-I made-up some raised panels-but it
was purely aesthetic. wow sorry to ramble on-didn't realize how long
this post was getting-I was just trying to draw the best mental
picture I could-Good luck with the house-------------GEOD
P.S. dont u guys use alot of "air-lock" style entrance doors over
there?-just asking because of design similarity-
Hello and thank you everyone for your comments.
Yes, most new houses are planned with air-lock style entrances, and it's
a very effective way to keep the cold and noise outside. For some reason
there is a trend toward "passive heating" housebuilding too, but I am
not taking the plunge.
It would mean that the house is so well insulated, that the heating is
provided by the various appliances and people living in the house, with
no need for any heating (except for the coldest days of the year). The
houses are kept as always underpressurized, to avoid moisture in the
walls, and the warm air exiting the house is used to warm up the
I finally found some roller shutter dealers over here, so let's see what
deals they have to offer :)
On 1/18/2010 3:53 PM, GEOD998 wrote:
I don't see anything wrong with passive heating if in fact its doable,
and I'm not convinced it is, but I would certainly have some sort of
mechanical back-up just in case, like maybe a wood burning stove and
several cords of hard wood.
Curious, how big are the airlocks you mentioned and are they at all
We don't have one on our house but we do have a storm door that sort
of acts like one.
I know someone that has one and its sort of like an enclosed foyer,
about 8' x 8', with 2 sets of exterior doors and its a very expensive
On 1/21/2010 12:23 AM, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Our air-lock will be about 4' x 8' (120cm x 250cm), just a bit bigger
than the standard size. Usually only the main entrance is done like
this, backyard doors and less often used doors do not need this. If
interested, here is what the floorplans look like:
http://personal.inet.fi/private/sandini/L5_1krs090924.pdf (1st floor)
http://personal.inet.fi/private/sandini/L5_2krs090924.pdf (2nd floor)
Cool, neat little crib. Nice size rooms. Clearly, ya'll do stuff
differently over there.
Instead of bedroom closets you have what, cabinets?
Also, inside the large bedroom on the right on the 2nd floor is
another smaller room, what is that, a den or study?
Has this been built?
If so, I'd like to see a couple pix of the exterior if you have any.
On 1/22/2010 4:00 AM, email@example.com wrote:
Some do closets, some prefer cabinets. It will be cabinets for us, we've
"always" had this solution and it suits us well.
The master bedroom has a separate closet, that will be used as an
mini-office for a few years, until one of the kids decides to leave
home. I need to have a VPN connection to the hospital to see x-rays and
EKGs without having to drive to work at night when my younger residents
are on call. The closer it is to my bed, the better. On the other hand,
I don't want to work in my bedroom... Then the office will be turned
into a closet and one of the smaller bedrooms into an office/library.
We're starting to build in June, and hope to have a roof and windows
before it starts snowing in october. After that the inside work will
happen at a slower pace and we hope to move in during the next summer or so.
I once designed a house for a doctor that was on some acreage and much
of it was encased in an 8' concrete block privacy wall 12' away from
the outside of the house. This wall was on both sides and across the
rear and all of the bedrooms had sliding glass doors instead of
windows. Each of the bedrooms had their own little private porch with
slab floor and a pergola overhead.
$20k? Thats all? LOL
To be fair, I don't know the market over there so I can't say much
about improvement to the design.
I do seem to recall the outside walls were rather thick, maybe 10-12"
or so, not that there's anything wrong with that.
You can grow lots of stuff on them big window sills. heh
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