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What is a Passive House?

A Passive House is not just a concept but a construction methodology that can be incorporated into the way we construct our homes.

The Five Principles of Passive House Design

1. Super Insulated Envelopes.

The first principle of Passive House design involves super-insulating the building envelope. This means that the walls, roof, and floor are packed with high-performance insulation, reducing the amount of heat that can pass from the home. This insulation requirement goes beyond standard building codes, ensuring a warm, comfortable home even in the coldest winters.

2. Airtight Construction

The second principle is airtight construction. In a Passive House, every seam and joint is carefully sealed to prevent drafts and energy loss. This “airtight” nature doesn’t mean the house is stuffy or uncomfortable; in fact, it’s just the opposite. Airtight construction helps control the indoor environment, keeping warm air inside during the winter and hot air out during the summer and makes your home energy-efficient.

3. High-Performance Glazing

Next up is high-performance glazing. Passive Houses use advanced windows that are often triple-glazed and filled with gases like argon or krypton to minimise heat transfer. These windows are also designed to improve solar gain in the winter and lower it in the summer, contributing to the home’s overall energy efficiency by reducing energy consumption.

4. Thermal-Bridge-Free Detailing

The fourth principle is thermal-bridge-free detailing. A thermal bridge is an area of the building envelope that has a higher heat transfer than the surrounding materials, which can lead to significant energy loss, making it one of the disadvantages of a passive house design. Careful planning and construction should ensure that these thermal bridges are eliminated.

Principles Of Passive House Design | Hazelwood Homes

5. Heat Recovery Ventilation

The final principle is heat recovery ventilation. Because Passive Houses are so airtight, they require mechanical ventilation to ensure a steady supply of fresh air. In addition to providing fresh air, heat recovery ventilation systems capture heat from the outgoing stale air and preheat the incoming fresh air. This process helps maintain a comfortable indoor temperature and improves overall energy efficiency.

Why Choose a Passive House?

Choosing to build a Passive House is a decision to invest in comfort, sustainability, and long-term savings. These homes are designed to be incredibly energy-efficient that may help reduce heating & cooling costs by up to 80%. They also offer improved indoor air quality, a quiet and comfortable living environment, and the peace of mind that comes with making a sustainable choice.