The best basement wall design / Guides

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.

...the exterior of the wall. The problem is that foam insulations are 5 to 15 times more expensive per Rvalue than the mineral fibre insulations that are used in walls. So the wall becomes expensive very quickly. Third you can insulate the wall, install the air / vapour barrier, then strap the wall on the inside with ...

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

How to build high performance homes with less lumber

...the pages below and in the Ecohome Green Building Guide pages . How to design a home for thermal comfort and energy efficiency The best lumber choices for timber frame construction homes Are high efficiency homes worth the extra cost? What are the best walls? Building science made easy - video ...

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

Rigid insulation panels: which ones to use for different applications

...the interior of a high performance stud wall design , you won't need to add an additional vapour barrier. Here is the fun part - Since there is foil on either side of the panel, you end up with a harmless second vapour barrier, which is usually heresy in building design. But this can help in summer months when there ...

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

How to design for thermal comfort in a home

...the thermal performance of the home . If you have cold walls and windows, heat radiating from your body will help warm them at the expense of your own personal comfort. If the temperatures of the surfaces in your home are warmer, you will feel more comfortable regardless of what your thermostat says. Other environmen...

Crawlspace radon barrier installation for radon mitigation
Radon in Homes - Mitigation

Removing radon gas from basements and crawlspaces

...the concrete floor on opposite sides of the basement, then install a vacuum in one and measure air flow with the other. If there is sufficient air movement below the slab, then a radon evacuation stack can be installed with a fan that exhausts to the exterior. Rob Mahoney of Radon Works in the National Capital Region...

Prefab LEED Passive House Kit Homes the Future of House Building?
Passive House

Prefab Passive House & LEED ready kit homes - the future of home building?

...the costly process of soil remediation that would have been required to build a standard footing and frost wall, or the expense and complication of building and insulating a basement properly . Raft slabs distribute the weight evenly over the entire surface of the floor rather than having the weight rest entirely on th...

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

How to choose a home-building contractor

...designers and technologists: Another avenue is to begin with a home designer who has a experience with performance homes, since they may have local builders they can recommend. The same goes the other way; if you find a builder you really connect with, ask if they have preferred designers they can recommend. If you...

Deck Construction, 10 Top Tips for Building Decks
Decks, porches and gazebos

Building a deck ? 10 Tips to make your deck last longer

...the autumn or the spring, first check the weather and the drying time of the stain. Written on the can should be the functional temperature range for application as well as how long it will take to dry. Make sure the weather isn't predicted to go below the recommended temperature within the listed drying time. Our pref...

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

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

...design , so that everything – and I mean everything – is on the table for design alterations to reduce the carbon foot print of homes. That means the size and design of homes , the materials selected, and the energy performance. What is a low carbon home? Every building has its own ‘embodied energy’ or ‘embodied ca...

Problem areas of air leakage in a home and blower door test being cond
Air and vapour barriers

Airtight Construction of Homes is Essential: "Your house sucks." "Oh yeah? your house blows!"

...the MERV rating of a filter (Maximum Efficiency Reporting Value), which determines the amount of particulate they collect and the quality of air they expel. As a bench mark, the LEED rating system lists MERV 11 as a 'good' quality , MERV 13 as 'excellent'. The higher the number the better. You always want an airtight...

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?

...the costly process of soil remediation that would have been required to build a standard footing and frost wall, or the expense and complication of building and insulating a basement properly . Raft slabs distribute the weight evenly over the entire surface of the floor rather than having the weight rest entirely on th...