Why Not Super Insulated Housing?

You know it is going to get Hotter!

There are so many articles out there about global climate change.  Along with climate change comes the inevitable.  Longer hotter summers!  One way that we might be able to adapt better in the future is to construct homes and other buildings with super insulation to meet the need of keeping us cool during the hottest times. As an added benefit it will keep us warm in the winter!  One of the construction techniques comes from the Passive House concept.  Read on and see if any of this makes sense to you.

It's getting Hotter!

It’s getting Hotter!

Passivhaus in Europe


Thick walls, thick roofs, and triple-glazed windows

Most European Passivhaus buildings have wall and roof R-values ranging from 38 to 60. Wood-framed buildings usually have 16-inch-thick double-stud walls or walls framed with deep vertical I-joists. Masonry buildings are usually insulated with at least 10 inches of exterior rigid foam. To meet the Passivhaus window standard, manufacturers in Germany, Austria, and Sweden produce windows with foam-insulated frames and argon-filled triple-glazing with two low-e coatings.

Although the Passivhaus Institut recommends that window area and orientation be optimized for passive solar gain, the institute’s engineers have concluded, based on computer modeling and field monitoring, that passive solar details are far less important than airtightness and insulation R-value.

Passivehouse in the United States


Imagine having a home that was neutral to heating and cooling.  Where Air transfer with a heat pump was all that was necessary to keep an even temperature in a larger home…Cool huh?  or Warm depending on what season you were in!

If you want to spend the extra money for increased insulation and wall widths knowing that you will make it up in utility bill savings,  a Passive House is the way to go.

Passive House Concept

Passive House Concept


About rsingram

Environmental Specialist, Disaster Reservist, Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control, Para-Archeologist
This entry was posted in Alternative Energy, Climate Change, Economics, Education, Solar Energy and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Why Not Super Insulated Housing?

  1. Vee says:

    Like today’s post, Rob — especially the “plug” for Passive Solar. It truly works! If possible, folks building a new home should construct it facing the best direction to capture the afternoon sun through large windows, as ours does. In the winter, we often have to open a window. Now what we need is Solar to capture even more savings. VJ

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