choosing insulation / Guides

Metal roof with solar panels
Roof coverings

How to choose roofing materials

1. Asphalt shingles: Asphalt shingles © Ecohome We’ll start with shingles to get it out of the way, because choosing an eco-friendly, durable roof covering starts first with dismissing any idea of installing asphalt shingles. High-embodied energy, rarely if ever recycled, they deteriorate rapidly with UV ray...

Slab on grade or a foundation and basement?
Foundation choices

Slab-on-grade vs foundation and crawlspace or basement

...insulation below concrete basement floors , and as always, it is important to realize that the requirements of building codes are the bare minimum only. Increasing sub-slab insulation to R15 or R20 (or more) will make floors much more comfortable and reduce heating costs. The added cost for additional floor insulation ...

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

...insulation (Roxul Comfortboard) makes leveling and placing windows quite easy. It is somewhat compressible and it holds its R value when compressed, and it isn't harmed by moisture the way fiberglass insulation can be. Create a durable air seal: low-expanding spray foam is commonly used around windows, which works fi...

Crawl Spaces or Slab on Grade Foundations?
Crawl spaces

Should I Build on a Slab on Grade Foundation or a Crawl Space?

...insulation if there is no food source to attact them, so always build homes with durability strategies. If termites DO eat into your foam foundation, it would likely take an infestation of biblical proportions to remove enough insulation to cause a structural issue or any significant heat loss. So if an apocalyptic inv...

Renovate, Remodel or Rebuild? How to choose which is Best for Homes
Wall assemblies - renovation

Should I be renovating my home or tearing it down & rebuilding?

...insulation on the exterior of the vapour barrier in order to keep it within the warmer section of the wall assembly. REMOTE wall exterior insulation can be used for home renovations © Ecohome With enough insulation on the exterior of the wall you can also safely add batt insulation in the stud bays to further i...

Frost Heave Prevention Helps Stop Frost Heaving Breaking up Home Foundations
New foundations and slab-on-grade

What causes Frost Heave? Preventing frost heaving is down to good foundation design

...insulation against frost heave, so it has been ingrained in us for centuries as essential. But, thanks to modern building practices, you can also use ‘insulation’ as insulation against frost heave! Soil has an insulating value of about R3 per foot, where foam insulation will be between R3 and R5 per inch. That’s why ...

Crawl Spaces or Slab on Grade Foundations?
Foundations and Basements

Slab on grade or crawlspaces, which is better?

...insulation if there is no food source to attact them, so always build homes with durability strategies. If termites DO eat into your foam foundation, it would likely take an infestation of biblical proportions to remove enough insulation to cause a structural issue or any significant heat loss. So if an apocalyptic inv...

Why Electric Heating Systems are Best for Sustainable Homes
Heating with electricity

Heating with Electricity - The Best Choice for High Efficiency & Zero Energy Homes?

...choosing to add gas to a home means adding additional energy infrastructure, and with that comes additional cost. The question then turns to the fuel source. What will it cost to heat with natural gas in the future? There is already reason for concern for those that heat their homes with fossil fuels, due to supply a...

Polished concrete floors and counters
Paints, finishes and natural coatings

Finishing concrete floors with silicate densifiers

...insulation a concrete slab on grade makes a perfect thermal battery for solar heat . Sealing concrete floors: Raw concrete is very porous and will have a lot of tiny, interconnected air pockets in it that will absorb moisture and other contaminants, and stain easily. It will also endlessly release dust into the air...

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

Do Earthships work in cold climates?

...choosing XPS foam over other types of insulation will make the planet greener is by helping frozen tundra come back to life. For help choosing the most Eco-friendly rigid foam insulation panels, see here . 'We have been doing it now for so long that we really can't find better materials to build with" - Mike Reynolds...

Zero Carbon Homes - The S1600 Prefab Eco Home is affordably Close
Planning and Design

Zero Carbon Homes - The S1600 Prefab Eco Home gets affordably Close

...insulation of a building may be re-processed as insulation again in the future and the rest can be used as a source of energy that replaces non-renewable energy. Plywood walls instead of drywall: most of the interior surfaces, walls and cathedral ceiling are finished with plywood panels that are urea-formaldehyde fre...