Buying a green home / Guides

Choosing the right firewood
Wood stove and biomass heat

Burning the right firewood for maximum heat output and minimum environmental impact

...an anyway. So relax, and burn it if you have it. In fact a small softwood fire can be ideal as a quick way to take the edge off of a cold house without overheating your home and leaving a big charcoal bed. It is also the best kindling you will find. In areas where a lot of people heat with firewood, there are often n...

Renovate, Remodel or Rebuild? How to choose which is Best for Homes
Wall assemblies - renovation

Should I be renovating my home or tearing it down & rebuilding?

...al component of a wall system is having an intact air & vapor barrier . Without one, you sacrifice durability, energy performance and comfort. Air leakage makes homes drafty and very costly to heat, and escaping moisture will wreak havoc inside walls. Stripping exterior walls to the sheathing is a great starting place ...

How to choose the best home EV charger or EVSE?
Lifestyle, location and commuting

EV home charging stations & How to decide which is the best EVSE for you

...home. Fast-charging public charging stations are often found at rest stops along major highways and interstates, allowing EVs to make longer distance trips. The fastest EV charging stations are provided by Tesla (Tesla Superchargers), and as you would expect they don’t accommodate other makes. Tesla showed a lot of m...

Is EPS foam eco-friendly? Exterior home insulation rigid foam panels
Insulation and soundproofing

Does plastic foam or Styrofoam insulation have a place in green building?

...an repackage as ‘sustainable building guidance’, and that’s where people get talked into silly things like using plants as air filters or buying magic insulating paint . That won’t happen here. As a global community, all we can do to protect ourselves from runaway climate change is to weigh all the variables and make...

Climate change impact of diet
Lifestyle and environment

how your diet affects climate change

...arable to meat and is healthier for your body as well, so - break out the beans and lentils! Organic, humane and grass-fed eggs and dairy Organic, humane and grass-fed eggs and dairy have a lower environmental impact than what comes out of large-scale production facilities. Grass-fed and pasture-raised animal produ...

Non-toxic building materials can improve home air quality
Healthy indoor air quality

Maintaining healthy indoor air quality

...anium , and it is the radioactivity of it that makes it a danger to humans. Health Canada estimates that radon gas is the cause of 10% of all lung cancer deaths , for a total of 2000 Canadian fatalities annually. Some of the highest levels in Canada are found in Ontario and West Quebec. The EPA in the USA also has a ...

Solar thermal collectors

Product of the month: Solar water heater with overheating protection

...and and a greater input of energy, storage tanks can reach their maximum temperature early in the day and enter a state of stagnation, creating a high-temperature and high-pressure environment. Flat plate solar collectors can reach temperatures as high as 200°C (395°F), and evacuated-tube collectors can reach tempera...

FSC certified wood carries the FSC certification labels
Wood and organic materials

All about FSC certified lumber & wood products - Why FSC certification is important

...and architects using certified wood and paper products from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), American Tree Farm System (ATFS), Canadian Standards Association (CSA), Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), and Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) certification standards can achieve a point in...

How to choose Triple pane, high performance windows
Windows and doors

Our top tips for buying high-performance windows

...aved in heat transfer will be lost through air leakage. • Be careful to select glazing with a high coefficient of visible transmittance [VT] and ensure that glazing on all orientations have a matching colour or tint. A high VT means more daylight is available which can save energy for artificial light and its associa...

Dual axis solar tracker
Solar photovoltaic

Choosing between solar trackers and fixed solar panels mounts

...at means you can get away with installing fewer panels and still have the same yield as a larger fixed array, which most of the time (if not all) is pointing in a less than ideal direction. An additional benefit but quite a valuable one, is that you also avoid having to factor in the durability of roofing materials a...

When should you replace windows
Windows and doors

When should you replace old windows?

...and a proper installation will have a huge impact on how they perform and how long they last. Suspended film windows: Suspended film thermals are an alternative to triple pane thermals, where rather than glass, a virtually weightless transparent film creates an additional sealed chamber of air. They can come with m...