How much insulation does a basement need / Guides

Why basements flood and how to prevent that with a sump pump
Basements improvements

Why Basements Flood & How to Prevent Flooded Basements

...a valuable and affordable addition that can alert you to a problem that you may be able to solve easily in time to possibly prevent a basement flood. Many of the smart home automation technologies on the market are very much about convenience, but receiving a smart phone notice of a leak is invaluable, and may afford y...

Installing foam panel insulation, which is best?
Insulation and soundproofing

Rigid insulation panels: which ones to use for different applications

...aracteristics, performance and ecological impacts vary significantly. Alternatively, depending on application and budget, you could always choose natural Green Insulation Products, Like Hemp Insulation panels or Batt Insulation or mineral wool - demonstrated here in roof insulation . Polyisocyanurate Foam Panels: P...

The passive solar home in Lac Kenogami, Quebec
Passive solar home design

Ecohome design wins House of the Year Award from Green Builder® Magazine

...at this one does, even the smallest heat gain can have a measurable impact. If you still find yourself a bit chilly in a house such as this, maybe get a cat. A nice fat one can generate about the same amount of heat as a 20 watt light bulb, and that might be all you need. This is of course an oversimplification of a ...

How to Build With Less Wood for Best Performance
Wood and organic materials

How to build high performance homes with less lumber

...a great time to highlight a few alternatives. Standard residential home construction in most colder climates now involves 2x6s and fiberglass insulation batts. The reasoning behind that is less about snow loads and structural integrity, as much as it is about creating a deeper cavity to accommodate thicker insulation...

Prefab frost-protected shallow foundation insulated form kit
Slab on Grade

Raft slabs - How to build Insulated Frost Protected shallow foundations (FPSF) on problem soils

...ab-on-grade floor on a site with a high water table. Images courtesy of Yanni Milon. Drain placement for slab on grade with high water table Drain placing with gravel and geotextile under a slab on grade foundation Placing gravel for draining slab on grade with high water table A raft slab acts a bi...

Earthship in Taos, New Mexico, shame they don't work in cold climates
Concept and design

Do Earthships work in cold climates?

...as in about 2005 when this design improvement happened (which was decades after basement insulation was already standard practice), he speaks as if insulating below grade thermal mass walls was his own idea, and gave home insulation a new name - Thermal Wrap . "If the Earthship were a gasoline engine, Thermal Wrap an...

How radiant floors work
Delivery: radiant, forced-air and decentralized

How to design for thermal comfort in a home

...antly a radiant transfer, it's not air-based. The ASHRAE handbooks, medical journals and the journals on indoor environmental ergonomics are very clear on that, that roughly 60% of the transfer of heat between the human body and the environment at normal activity levels is actually radiant". The average adult radiate...

Tips for finding a reliable green home builder
How to Find Qualified Green Building Professionals

How to choose a home-building contractor

...a reliable green home builder: Best practices for basement construction - Ecohome Guide How much insulation does a basement need - EcoHome Guide How to finish the exterior of Insulated basements and slabs - Ecohome Video Guide Why is a Slab-on-grade Foundation more Eco-Friendly than a Basement? - EcoHome Disc...

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

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

...aving a properly installed and effective air barrier . Air leakage can be responsible for as much as a third of energy losses from a home due to hot air escaping through the smallest of holes. Again, having a clean indoor facility can make it easier to accomplish any task effectively, including properly air sealing w...

Passive home designer Harold Orr, one of the original high performance homes
Passive solar home design

The principal designer of the house that inspired the global Passivhaus movement reflects on the project that started it all.

...an building a double wall. If the strapping is installed vertically you have a double wall without the advantages stated below. Fourth you can build a double wall to make space for the insulation you want. Two 2x4's are very near the same price as a 2x6 and are cheaper than 2x8's. The double wall has several advantag...

Slab-on-grade for Ecohome's upcoming video building guide
Slab on Grade

how to build a slab-on-grade on standard soil

...a hole in a bucket and stick it over top. This way the drain will have a little play, making it much easier to hook up bathtub and sink drains. 4. Installing insulation After all the plumbing was in place, 8 inches of rigid insulation was installed - Rockwool underneath the slab and on the vertical exterior surface...