The New American Home Remodel Phase 3

In this video Michael discusses building a high performance home and the importance of a personalized design for the climate and location of the home. This home will be truly unique and extremely energy efficient when complete. He is looking forward to it’s completion.Stay tuned to our YouTube channel and blog for more videos and photos as the home nears completion.

The Video Transcript:

As part of a high-performance home it’s not always just about building materials.  It is about design and looking at the project kind of holistically.  You have these goals right, but then there is these design challenges so you develop a solution that works for your site conditions. For a desert climate, our goal is entirely to stop the heat from getting into the home.

One of the reasons we picked the lot that we did, was there is three existing trees that are all south-facing.  They block the house so we made sure we kept those, they are deciduous trees.  They lose their leaves in the winter, we want the heat and then in the summer those trees create the shade.  Most of our south-facing glass or a lot of it is high.  And what we did, is we have four to five-foot-deep eaves so those eaves were very deep, the windows are about two feet tall, so we are able to get indirect light but not direct Sun and solar rays on the south-facing side.

We have developed our own wall assemblies in conjunction with a series of different materials.  We have high-density foam wrap around the whole exterior which minimizes any thermal bridging inside to the house. In addition, we used open cell spray foam about three and a half inches thick to act as our air barrier and then the addition of the hi-fi and five foil to the exterior walls. In conjunction with our sound bat insulation and we did very similarly the same thing with our roof assembly as well.  So effectively in those conditions we’re going to be closer to an ar-15 even.  Currently, when you walk through the home you can feel a 10 to 15 degree drop because of all of those envelope assemblies.  Doing the project has been spectacular. I think it tests you in ways that you never thought you’d be tested.  And it tests your team, it tests your resolve, it tests your ability to think on your feet but ultimately, you’ve gotten to do something that’s pretty spectacular.