First Winter for Net Zero Home

The net zero home is largely complete. The only work left to be done is on the outdoor patio. We began gathering data on energy performance in September, and though it is too early to draw solid conclusions, the early numbers are on target for this 3,000 sqft home. As winter has set in, the interior temperature is holding around 70 degrees. From the air, to the walls, to the floors, the entire structure is designed to hold heat equally—even the poured cement floors are comfortable to walk on barefoot this time of year. This is achieved mostly through the strategic use of insulation in the wall, roof, and floors, and good air sealing techniques done prior to the insulation phase. The heat pump/forced hot air system is powered by solar electric when the solar panels are producing electricity and delivered by mini-splits located in most rooms throughout the house.

We also wanted to share some details on the deck we built. Not only is the view amazing, the material used to construct the deck is somewhat remarkable as well. In keeping with the ethos of this project, and our own commitment to sustainability, we used Thermory® decking, which is an alternative to pressure treated or tropical hardwood lumber. It is sourced from sustainably managed US forest and undergoes thermal, rather than chemical, modification for durability. Thermory® decking is also designed to reduce waste through engineered “Joint End Matched Joints” that span the decking  joists. Basically, we utilized almost every inch of decking during the construction with very little wasted material. Other areas of decking were constructed using reclaimed wood from the owner’s previous home.