Energy efficiency / Guides

Efficient home design

Phase change building materials - natural heat storage in buildings

...energy from the air. It doesn't appear they are available in North America unfortunately as this would be a fantastic addition to homes that were attempting to reach Zero Net Energy, as it an provide comfort and help balance home temperatures with reduced energy demand for heating and cooling. With very little testin...

PSI

Case Study: Kenogami House, Saguenay, Quebec

...Energy efficient, Non-toxic, Durable, User friendly, Resilient and Engaging. This split level home was built on a 6 inch thick concrete slab-on-grade (insulated to R60) and is as durable as it is energy efficient. The floors are polished concrete and red spruce; interior walls comprise brick placed in the path of the...

Wildfire Smoke & How to Keep it Outside Homes
Healthy indoor air quality

How to keep wildfire smoke out of Green Homes with mechanical ventilation systems?

...energy efficiency; indoor air leaks waste cooling power during summer and heating power during winter - which is why using HRV and ERV systems is recommended to reduce energy loss whilst ventilating homes. When there are wildfires in the area though causing a smoky atmosphere, an airtight envelope also helps prevent th...

Basement wall insulation
Insulation and soundproofing

Properly insulating basements and concrete slab floors

...energy efficiency. The rate of heat loss through foundation walls also varies between below-grade and the parts above. Over a heating season, there will be much more heat loss through above-grade walls than those below. Therefore, with one wall and two rates of heat transfer, this leaves the dilemma of insulating m...

Passive House design Vancouver
Passive House

The city of Vancouver is actively promoting Passive House construction

...energy for multifamily projects pursuing PH certification. After the most recent update, the city's building code now recognizes PHPP software (passive house planning package) for energy modelling, meaning builders are no longer required to do a HOT2000 or ASHRAE 90.1 compliant model in addition to the PHPP modelling...

Solar thermal collectors

All about solar thermal collectors

...energy as the entire surface area is a black collector. So, in the absence of other factors, a flat plate will produce more energy than an evacuated tube design in summer, because it has a greater amount of collector surface area, and ambient air temperature is less of a problem. Conversely, in winter, air temperatur...

Blower Door Tests - What's the Cost & Who Does Them?
Air and vapour barriers

What is a blower door test? What's the cost? How do you find a company to do one?

...energy-efficient home renovation tax credits , and, if you live in a region where those are in effect, then its likely a wise financial decision to take advantage of it. Some municipal governments offer tax breaks and rebates for energy efficiency upgrades , so you win on all fronts – you save money on your home renova...

The EC3 Tool - Skanska - Calculating & Comparing Carbon Footprint of Buildings
Planning and Design

Calculating the Carbon Footprint of Buildings, Introducing The EC3 Calculator From Skanska

...energy and operating energy If you consider the useful life of a building, about half of its carbon footprint comes from grey energy – or embodied carbon, and the other half comes from operating energy. The grey energy consumed during the construction phase causes a one-off embodied carbon emission: when the building...

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...

Passive House on a Budget - The Damn Near Passive house
Passive House

The Un-certified but 'Damn Near' Passive House.

...energy efficient and environmentally sensitive. Assure that the house is designed to accommodate the ageing process. Complete the entire project on a reasonable budget that should accommodate many potential builders. Meet recognized PassivHaus standards for energy efficiency if proven to be cost efficient. Asse...