Energy efficiency / Guides

Radiant floor heat in a bathroom
Delivery: radiant, forced-air and decentralized

DIY radiant floor installation

...energy efficiency. Heating a floor increases the temperature differential between the concrete and the ground below it, which increases the rate of heat loss. Contrary to common beliefs, heat does not rise. Warm air rises, but heat goes everywhere. You need only pick up a hot coffee in a ceramic mug to answer this qu...

Photovoltaic solar panels
Renewable energy

Solar heating and energy generation

...energy production essentially a noble, yet unprofitable undertaking for homeowners. Regardless of financial returns though, any home renewable energy system is clean energy and will reduce the demand on our energy infrastructure, and consequently emissions. Passive solar heating Passive solar heating is the conce...

Passively-heated off-grid LEED house in Low, Quebec
Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

Off-grid living blog: a firsthand account of building and living in a remote area

...energy source, the sun. I also discovered the Passive House movement coming out of Europe, which looks to drastically reduce overall energy use through such things as super-insulation and extremely airtight buildings. Interior design concepts: For any of you who are considering building a custom home, I would recom...

The LEED rating system
LEED Homes

The LEED rating system

...Efficiency (15 points) The goal of this category is to reduce the overall consumption of water inside the home and out. Points are earned for water conscious home design including efficient appliances, fixtures and fittings; and reducing outdoor irrigation needs through rain water collection and water recycling. En...

Moving to the Countryside - How to make it Work
Lifestyle, location and commuting

Moving to the countryside? Here's how that can work...

...energy performance. What is a low carbon home? Every building has its own ‘embodied energy’ or ‘embodied carbon’, and that refers to the carbon released during material extraction, manufacturing and shipping of building materials in the beginning, as well as the energy required to heat and power it for the entirety...

Rendering of River District Sustainable housing development In Vancouv
Lifestyle, location and commuting

Vancouver developer leads the way to more sustainable communities

...energy are considered (district energy refers to energy generation systems dedicated to an individual community). District energy system diagram © ParkLane Homes One of the great advantages of district energy systems is that entire mixed-use communities are connected to balance energy loads ...

Condensation on windows leads to mold & mildew in homes, ERV & HRV systems help
Ventilation

Ventilation & air exchangers

...energy recovery in the USA is the ability to meet the ASHRAE ventilation and energy standards, while improving indoor air quality and reducing total HVAC ratings and energy requirements. ERV technology is not only an effective means of reducing energy cost and heating and cooling loads, but allows for smaller equipme...

Correctly installed Triple pane south facing windows on Ecohome's Demo House
Windows and doors

Installing doors & windows for the best performance in high efficiency homes, LEED & Passive House

...Efficiency buildings like LEED certified, Passive House, ZNE , Passive Solar, Zero Energy Homes or even Positive Energy Homes all rely on the building envelope having a high level of insulation, and a managed level of Air Transfer Rate, preferably via an HRV or ERV unit to control the energy losses from essential venti...

Solar Electricity Generation & Storage with no Batteries, Azelio
Renewable energy

Azelio Solar solutions combine electricity generation & storage without Batteries

...energy power storage in an innovative and more affordable manner than we are used to seeing , because they have reversed the customary actions of power generation followed by power storage in big and costly batteries. Instead, Azelio uses photovoltaic (PV) solar energy and converts it into heat in a thermal battery (...

Alex and Jerelyn Wilson's Vermont farm
Lifestyle, location and commuting

Creating a farm and building a resilient lifestyle

...energy efficiency, renewable energy, and green building for more than 35 years, there were countless ideas, materials, and innovative products I wanted to try out. This would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create a model of sustainability, accessible design (where we can age in place), and resilience. Renovat...

Hemp insulation products for USA & Canada rolling off the production line
Insulation and soundproofing

Hemp insulation in Canada & USA - insulating naturally is an Eco-friendly alternative

...energy-efficiency coordinator for Ecohome. For those wishing to reduce their impact during construction and renovations, it’s worthwhile to consider the embodied energy of products and remember that polyurethane requires an input of 14 times more energy to achieve the same thermal performance as hemp. And at the end ...