Energy Performance Monitoring

Some of you are curious to know how our Passive Houses (PH) in the Seattle and Olympia area will perform over time and how accurate the PHPP modeling software really is for predicting continued performance. Well, we’re curious too… but, being so intrinsically aware of how the whole Passive House approach works, we are very confident in its performance. That said, it’ll still be interesting to do some comparisons in a years time, just for fun and nerdy curiosity.

In addition to the testing required by the Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) which verifies compliance with the Passive House performance characteristics, there will be additional testing on our houses by the Washington State University Energy Program. We are now partnered with them under the Building America Program, which is an industry-driven research program sponsored by the US Department of Energy. The program was “designed to accelerate the development and adoption of advanced building energy technologies”. They will be collecting performance data from our Passive Houses over time which will add to their knowledge of cost-effective energy innovations in the building industry. This, of course, leads to a broader base of knowledge that informs how we will all build in the future.

The benefits of the Building America Program to the homeowner is:

  • Reduced costs—Building America homes use less energy which translates into large reductions in utility bills
  • Improved comfort—Building America homes are constructed to reduce temperature fluctuations and room-to-room variations
  • Higher quality—Building America homes utilize strategies and materials that improve the overall structure and operation
  • Durability—Building America homes are designed to resist long term degradation caused by weather and age
  • Environmental sustainability—Building America homes save energy and reduce pollution.

There’s quite a lot of great information on their site.

We’ll keep you posted as results come in!

Posted on October 21, 2010

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