Off-grid heating / Guides

Comparing ground source and air source heat pumps
Heating and cooling

Heat Pumps: Ground source geothermal GSHP or air source ASHP, which one is best for heating a home?

...heating costs by a factor of 3 and offer very attractive paybacks. Research has shown that heating a single family home with a heat pump instead of a natural gas furnace or boiler yields carbon emissions savings comparable to taking an average car off the road . A gradual transition to heating with heat pumps offer...

High efficiency wood stoves
Wood stove and biomass heat

Heating with wood and biomass fuel

...off-grid heating solution . Burning firewood and other biomass fuels are a way to gain that independence. Heating efficiently with biomass fuel (wood, grain, seeds and manufactured fire logs) The good news is, improvements in stove and fireplace technology have been so dramatic that burning wood or biomass fuel for...

Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

A Toronto Off-grid home 20 years later; how did it fare?

In 1996, this off-grid house designed by architect Martin Liefhebber was one of two concept homes selected by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) as part of their Healthy Housing Design Competition. What was to be built was a three-bedroom semi-detached home on a small lot in downtown Toronto, And bey...

Net Zero Energy Homes Pilot Canada
Green building certifications

Net zero energy homes Canadian pilot results

...off-grid home construction arena it could be viewed as some fringe building technique like the Earthship and turn off builders and homeowners. Any new advance in house construction has to be scalable and not stray too far too quickly from the current norms that builders are familiar with. What are Net Zero Energy Hom...

Decentralized Energy Generation for LEED, Passive House & Green Homes
Renewable energy

Which is the Best Type of Home Energy Generation for Green Homes?

...heating - passive & active energy Passive solar heating refers to designing a home to collect heat from the sun . Passive cooling means providing natural shading to cool a home (such as deciduous trees, awnings or sun shades) . Passive heating and cooling using diagram © EcoHome As the word 'passive' indica...

Solar Air Heating Panels for Homes - How to Build DIY
Solar thermal collectors

All about solar air heaters - DIY or purchased

...heating panel that can release air in summer to prevent overheating when the panel isn't actively in use - as "cooking" a panel . You could also apply the principles of passive heating and cooling by placing the panel under the eave where it will have full exposure with the low winter sun but be shaded when the sun i...

Snowboarder, Mike, Basich's, off-grid cabin in the woods with hot tub
Tiny house

Off-grid tiny house in the heart of the Sierras.

...off-grid Tiny House in the woods. Armed with an appreciation for the great outdoors and a desire to learn to live off-grid, he bought 40 acres in the Sierras where he could do just that. After five years of hard work, Basich had a beautiful and artfully designed tiny home, respecting the principles of the golden rati...

Mobile tiny house
Tiny house

Is Tiny House living in a cold climate good or bad for the planet?

...heating costs could be among the highest. A high-performance stationary house many times the size could easily be built to require less heat than a mobile tiny house. And in a perfect world, people would live in smaller stationary homes. When tiny homes make sense: To reduce the operational cost of a tiny house it ...

A Tiny House for sale locally set me thinking, should I buy a Tiny Home?
Tiny house

ARE TINY HOUSES FOR SALE LOCALLY A GOOD CHOICE FOR A FIRST HOME?

...off-grid in some tiny town in the back of beyond. Tiny Houses for sale perched on an island in the middle of nowhere aren't everyone's cup of tea! (Depends on the day!) All the same – if you do find that Nirvana where you can park or build a Tiny House that you can afford and that’s legal, it goes without sayin...

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

Do Earthships work in cold climates?

...heating. Rainwater is collected, stored in large plastic cisterns and filtered for residential use; waste water is treated on site and used for growing food. The south-facing wall is all windows and acts as a heat collector and greenhouse where food is produced all year. That's all great stuff and it seems to w...

Building Green Homes on a Budget is Possible - Our top tips
Planning and Design

Top tips for planning and building a green home on a budget

...heating - so should be considered suboptimal. Distance from work, schools, shops and civilization. If serious about reducing your carbon footprint and living in a truly green home - the future requirements for getting everywhere your family needs to be can have an important impact. Unless you're looking to build an o...