Solar thermal / Guides

Off grid, passively heated and cooled house in the Gatineau Hills, Que
Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

Off grid living blog, part 2: passively heated, this house in Quebec aims for LEED certification

...solar panels to power your home there is an even stronger motivation to design for reduced consumption. Energy efficient appliances and low-flow faucets reduce hot water requirements and LED bulbs and design for natural lighting keep the house bright with very little energy use. Off grid passive solar h...

Prefab Passive House & LEED Kit Homes for Sale in Ontario & North Eastern US
Concept and design

Prefab Passive House & LEED ready kit homes - the future of buying a new home?

...solar air heated floor that this house will rest on The Wakefield House Solar Air Heated Floor © Ecohome Chosen High Efficiency Heating Brands : Legalett Solar Air-Heated Slab-on-Grade Form Kits Powrmatic heat pumps DF-Jade House, (Pacific Energy Fireplaces & Stove), Wood Stove and (The Grill Bowl), Grill...

Ecohome's Kenogami House 'The Most Resilient Home in North America'
Concept and design

Resilient design features for new home construction

...thermal mass and greater extraction of heat from its exhaust, a masonry stove can reduce wood consumption by as much as 2/3rds compared to a conventional wood stove. Solar thermal panels powered by photovoltaics: pumps and fans for hydronic solar panels (liquid) or air solar thermal panels or even air solar heated fl...

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

...Thermal bridging and poor quality windows can make it quite unpleasant to be near exterior walls on the really cold days. How window placement effects thermal bridging Thermal bridging around windows and doors results in loss of energy , cold spots, condensation points and potential wall damage. To demonstrate th...

Suspended-film insulating glass windows are high-performance windows
Windows and doors

Suspended-film insulating glass windows - A definitive guide for these high-performance windows

...solar gain needs to be optimized or the overall insulation value. When leveraging passive solar gain in a zero energy home, for example, the proper choice of south-facing windows can more heat in the day than they will lose at night, by a factor of as much as 50%, so look for a high SHGC with the highest possible R-v...

Passive House certification - PHI or PHIUS? The Spring House Passive House
Passive House

Everything you need to know about Passive House certification

...solar-thermal energy (e.g., solar hot water). All other renewable energies are disqualified - something PHIUS changed by including on-site energy production (photovoltaics or wind turbines) used on site in their assessment. PHI and PHIUS both believe that the Source Energy Limit should be the the most stringent but P...

Air-heated radiant concrete floor
Delivery: radiant, forced-air and decentralized

Air-heated radiant floors

...thermal-solar air heaters, which are less risky (and less expensive) than thermal-solar hydronic heaters. Insulating air tubes near the heater box output to better distribute heat © Ecohome Can radiant floor heating provide all the necessary heat for a home? In theory, yes, but it ...

Wood frame Triple-glazed, argon-filled windows in the Ecohome Demo House
Windows and doors

Choosing windows - which window frame? wood v aluminum v vinyl

...solar heat gain. Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC): The Solar Heat Gain Coefficient is a scale from 0 to 100 that indicates the amount of solar gain you will get through a pane of glass. The higher the number, the better the solar gain. Energy Rating (ER): After U-value, SHGC and the various designs and materi...

Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

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

...Solar energy collection A successful strategy to power a home with solar energy begins like the water system, with the core principle of first reducing demand. To that end, the appliances and systems of this house were designed and chosen for their reduced operational demand of energy. On the roof are eight photovo...

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

How to choose a home-building contractor

...Solar, Green Builder, or Green-home builder. Passive House and LEED are green building certification programs, but even if you don’t want to bother certifying a home, finding a builder that has built a Passive House, LEED or ZNE certified home is a good thing because they'll know and understand the importance of the ...

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

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

The first house designed under our Passive Solar Index (PSI) program won "Most Resilient House" in the 2013 Green Builder® Home of the Year Awards. The Kenogami House is a living laboratory of high performance design and technology, called "The Most Resilient House in North America" by Alex Wilson, founder of the Resi...