Helifix – Preserving Britain’s Housing Stock and National Heritage
Helifix remedial products play an important role in preserving Britain’s built environment, from the traditional housing stock to those listed buildings which are significant to the history of our communities and form part of our physical and cultural heritage.
‘Sustainability is at the core of the Helifix ethos… and has been for over 30 years’
Demolition of older buildings can be an option, but their repair and refurbishment is increasingly seen as a more sustainable option in terms of architectural value, materials use, neighbourhood disruption, waste disposal and overall cost. By using Helifix products and repair and refurbishment techniques, together we can provide a sustainable structural solution.
Helifix concealed, non-disruptive repair techniques not only secure masonry structures using the existing materials – thereby avoiding expensive taking down and rebuilding while retaining the building’s aesthetic appearance – but they often provide long term repair solutions for situations where the only alternative would be major rebuilding or demolition.
Social and environmental benefits
For environmental reasons alone, using existing buildings efficiently must be a global priority. Over 80% of construction materials, such as aggregates, timber, clay, come from the world’s natural resources and these are gradually running out. Traditional buildings are inherently sustainable, having been built largely from renewable materials obtained locally: timber, clay bricks and tiles, local stone and regional materials such as Cob, Wychert and Clay Lump. Helifix products are available to suit all material types and have proven themselves to be effective and reliable.
Replacing a building demands a considerable investment of energy. The energy embodied in the old building will be lost and further energy will be used in its demolition, removal and disposal. To this must be added the cost of new materials (including their transportation) and construction of the replacement building – all of which adds to our carbon footprint.
Retaining, repairing, preserving, protecting and prolonging the life of our buildings, rather than demolition and replacement, is not just in line with heritage conservation but with sustainability and environmental good sense.
All Helifix helical products are made from Stainless Steel, which as a material, has many environmental benefits in its production, use and recyclability. Because stainless steel has a high tensile strength, consumption of this material is less than if other metallic systems were to be used. Thus with a high strength to weight ratio, Helifix products are environmentally efficient in terms of material consumption during production.
Typically, stainless steel has an approximate recycled content of 60% (source: BSSA) which provides savings in the form of lower energy costs, reduced CO2 emissions and waste within the manufacturing process. Helifix helical products are corrosion resistant, allowing our customers to avoid the use of alternative materials that require more maintenance or earlier replacement. Low maintenance, long product life, combined with strong residual of Helifix helical products, contribute towards the effective whole life costing and extending the life of the structure.
Helifix stainless steel helical ties have a relatively small cross sectional area and consequently conduct very little heat, helping to achieve the enhanced levels of performance that are required in current legislation to reduce thermal bridging. Vast amounts of Helifix helical ties have been used in Local Authority and Housing Association retro-fit upgrade programmes to bring residential properties in line with ‘Decent Homes’ standards.
Stainless steel is 100% recyclable. It can be recycled indefinitely without loss of properties. Any excess stainless steel created within the Helifix Factory is recycled and returned back into the manufacturing chain. Recycling reduces the need for primary raw material and enables Helifix to help protect the global environment by reducing the depletion of non-renewable resources.
All cardboard collected within the Factory is recycled and all Helifix cardboard product packaging can be recycled by our customers.