Home heat loss / Guides

Basement wall insulation
Insulation and soundproofing

Properly insulating basements and concrete slab floors

...heat loss through your foundation walls, as heat moves more easily through some materials than others. Heat will be drawn from your home much quicker through rock than clay, and quicker through clay than soil. Heat will also move quicker through wet clay than dry. We would recommend at least R20 under slab floors in ...

Skylights can be problematic in a high performance home
Windows and doors

Are skylights an asset or a liability?

...heat on sunny days in winter (with the right orientation and angle), but the heat they lose when the sun is down will far outweigh any heat they gain. The real heat gain unfortunately comes in summer when you don't want it. The most common roof angles are a lower slope that don't work well with the angle of the winte...

Concrete floors and timber frame as thermal mass
Efficient home design

The pros and cons of thermal mass in buildings

...heat loss occurred during the day when the house was cooler because that decreased the differential between the indoor and outdoor temperatures. As homes perform much better now than in the past, those savings aren't as drastic anymore. And with a house that has little heat loss to begin with and a lot of thermal mas...

Thermal image showing where home heat loss is occurring.
Insulation and soundproofing

How insulation works

...heat transfer, helping keep homes warmer in winter and cooler in summer. How well-insulated your home is will determine how comfortable it is and how much you will spend on energy for heating and cooling, and in some respects, how durable it will be. The transfer of heat (or heat loss) occurs in 3 ways: conduction , ...

Balanced insulation levels in a green home
Efficient home design

Insulation in Green Home Building, a balanced approach to putting it where it does the most good

...heat movement and insulation is a bit like that. The cold hard facts about heat loss: Yes, a bit more heat is lost through the ceiling than the walls, but not nearly as much as much as you might think. The rate of heat loss from any surface of your home depends on the difference in temperature, and it just isn't ...

Off-grid home with solar PV & Battery backup
Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

Thinking about renewable home energy and a battery backup?

...heated homes, it's really just a traditional wood stove that will save your bacon (or help you cook it) when the power is out. A photovoltaic (PV) solar array that is designed to run the basic systems of your home, excluding heat, likely wouldn't be enough to heat your whole house if you diverted power to heating, bu...

heat pumps in tandem with heat pump hot water tanks
Heat pumps, geothermal and AC

Increased efficiency with heat pumps working in tandem

...heater that offers you only a 1 to 1 ratio. The Voltex water heater from AO Smith is an air-to-water heat pump which extracts heat from the air to generate hot water, so in the winter that 3 to 1 heating ratio of the first heat pump is transferred to the water heater. And the more 'free' heat you have in winter (sola...

Electric Heaters - is heating with electric an eco-friendly option?
Heating with electricity

Heating with electricity

...heating though in new or renovated Green high efficiency homes and when looking for heating zero energy homes , is that as the percentage of electricity generation by renewable sources increases, so does your heating system by default reduce it's carbon footprint. Electric heat sources: Heating with electricity is ...

PSI

Case Study: Kenogami House, Saguenay, Quebec

...heat gain and the heat normally generated though human occupancy. This will be the first winter for the Kenogami House, and its performance will be closely monitored. Should it be necessary to take measures to avoid overheating during mild periods, Alain is considering an air-to-water heat pump to extract heat from t...

Water efficiency
Plumbing and water heaters

How to save money on your hot water bills!

...heaters are fairly well insulated these days, and the heat lost from insulated pipes is really nothing to write home about. All that heat loss isn’t even a loss in winter months, it’s simply heat. Tankless water heaters are more commonly found in European countries rather than North America, for the simple reason of ...

Correct window installation details
Windows and doors

How to install windows

...heat gain and reduce energy demand during operation. Choosing higher quality windows on all sides of your home will mean reduced heat loss over a poorer quality window, and with the right windows on the south side you can gain more heat in the daytime than they will lose at night. For how to choose the best windows for...