Building Boxes, Waitakere Home

Sustainability in Waitakere Ranges


Michele and family wanted to create a family home that was as sustainable and energy-efficient as they could afford, designed for passive solar gain that was well insulated and well ventilated – and future-proofed as the family matured.

When building a new home there is a lot to think about, especially if you want to use Passive House design principles and achieve a New Zealand Homestar rating. It starts of course with the basic structure of your home, location, sunshine, warmth, energy usage and continues into the minutiae of multiple decisions on each new home. This is the journey Michele Powles and her family have been going through out in West Auckland as they build a home they hope will be sensitive to the environment, with smart design.

When thinking about building an environmentally friendly home most people don’t think about roofing iron. But longrun roofing can offer an architectural beauty to your home and still meet many environmental requirements. Longrun roofing is easy to attach solar panels to for energy efficient heating and is safe to collect drinking water off and because Dimond Roofing longrun is made from New Zealand steel, it is also recyclable.

Using the right base material that can weather the elements leads to a long life which also helps with sustainability. This is why Dimond Roofing recommended ColorCote MagnaFlow for the Powles home. Due to salt spray from the ocean it was important to ensure the base material wouldn’t rust, and ColorCote MagnaFlow contains an additional layer of magnesium in the alloy coating to give it advanced weather protection and a long, sustainable life with proper maintenance. Due to the low pitch (5 degrees) of part of the roof on this project, Dimond Roofing recommended using Veedek. Veedek features clean straight lines with a unique angled swage which provides a strong visual appeal that can handle New Zealand’s sudden downpours at a low pitch. Combine this with an economic cover width, and you have a cost effective yet striking roof.

Michele and family chose to cover their roof and walls (to be clad in Dimond Roofing Corrugate), in black because they wanted something that would provide a striking modern look, but without standing out against the natural bush setting. Tucked in on their section, the black hugs the land and fits well with the mangroves and often dark grey look of the West Coast sand in their environs. Black is effortlessly stylish, and will also highlight the natural beauty of the small section of external cedar weatherboards they’ve chosen to use.

Get the edge.