Community: PassivHaus

PassivHaus is a standard of construction that yields extremely tight envelopes and low energy use.

The PassivHaus Institute is in Germany, but we have a branch here in North America as well, Passive House Institute US

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6 Answers

A New York Times article on the Passivhaus standard

The latest New York Times article on the Passivhaus standard is called "The Passive House: Sealed for Freshness."

The article quotes Katrin Klingenberg, and interviews Don Freas, the owner of the Freas house that I described in one of my blogs, More Passivhaus Site Visits in Washington State.

The article also mentions GBA and the Pretty Good House. So check it out.

Asked By Martin Holladay | Aug 14 13
6 Answers

Vapor-open insulation systems?

We have are trying to insulate a historic masonry townhouse and extererior insulation is not an option.

Asked By Daniel Herskowitz | Jul 13 13
5 Answers

Could anyone suggest a fastener that would work well for attaching 6 in. mineral wool to the exterior of sheathing and studs?

Insulation: two layers of 3" Roxul Comfortboard IS
Wood sheathing and wood framed construction.
Two story residential project.

Asked By Rob Dapice | Jul 16 13
3 Answers

Some help with estimation of wall assembly cost?

We are in the process of designing a passive house and are working with PH certified architect/consultant. But for now, builder's knowledge would be needed: a back of the envelope calculation for the cost /sf of this kind of wall assembly: fiber cement board w/ rain screen, fiber board, dense packed cellulose, OSB, dense packed cellulose, drywall. The wood framing will most likely be w/Larson trusses. The R-value we are trying to achieve is around 40. The house is a duplex with gross sf area of ~4500. Would be good to know the material & labor separately. Why do I need it?

Asked By Lucyna de Barbaro | May 16 13
4 Answers

Hi, I'm looking for more info on the failure of a Belgian PassivHaus

There was an article on this site about the failure of a Belgian PassivHaus that rendered it uninhabitable due to poor indoor air quality. The previous page address now says 'access denied' or has been removed over the past couple of days - can anyone point me in the direction of further information?

Asked By richard asbury | May 14 13
10 Answers

Conversion of delivered energy to primary energy

I am looking for the factor that allows me to convert delivered energy (electricity in kWh) to the primary energy.(kWh) value. Location is British Columbia where most of the electricity generated is hydropower if this would have an impact on the ratio of primary energy to delivered energy. Many thanks.

Asked By Manfred Winter | Apr 30 13
5 Answers

Re-using lost efficiency from Solar Panels

I will start building a Passive House within a few months. Location is far North West Washington State close to Vancouver, BC but on US side. This means there are many heating days and virtually zero cooling days.

Asked By Stephen Carlton | Apr 18 13
14 Answers

Is this no-foam, no-stud, no-OSB, no-ply, Passivhaus envelope healthy?

We’re building a small passivhaus in central Vermont. (We’re shooting for PHIUS+ certification.) We’re eschewing the old paradigm of penetrating the outside envelope with HVAC, wiring, plumbing, sockets, switches, etc. (Anything on inside of the the outside wall be just that, on the wall -- i.e., surface-mounted. We don’t like the idea of a service cavity, for several green, labor, material, & space reasons. We will evolutionarily adapt our aesthetic sensibilities.) It will be almost identical to our current house, except we will be using cellulose now where we used foam before.

Asked By Greg Whitchurch | Apr 12 13
9 Answers

Flanged or undersill mounted passive house windows?

I will be using Intus Eforte windows in my passive house build. I have the option to purchase flanged windows that are installed on the outer of my double walls, or an undersill application that mounts almost between my double wall assembly. What are the pros and cons to these two options? Thanks.

Asked By Matthew Michaud | Jan 1 13
4 Answers

Insulating floor above vented crawlspace with cellulose

I am building a Passive House outside of Seattle in climate zone 4C. The building site has a high water table with water only 24 inches below grade in the winter after a good rain. I'd like to have at least R-50 for my floor above a vented crawlspace. The sub-floor will be the air barrier. The HRV, all duct work and the water heater will be above the floor in the conditioned space. I would like to use dense packed cellulose between the 18 inch deep TJI. I have concerns regarding the high water table.

Asked By Gerald Blycker | Mar 20 13
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