Category Archives: Build Smart

Preserving a Historic Home with Building Science

PRESERVING A HISTORIC HOME with BUILDING SCIENCE Historic Preservation is mostly about preserving and protecting buildings, objects, landscapes or other artifacts of historical significance. The Historic Molette House, ca. 1825 has a lot of significance in the Molette Family, as well with the people near the Molette’s Bend area near Selma, Alabama. When the home was moved […]

Read More

Attention to High Performance Details In New Homes Pays Off

On the One Hand… …the Proud Green Home at Serenbe has been a kind of Experimental House for High Performance Design and Construction. Some of the features, products and practices we’re trying for the first time with this home, others we’ve used or done before, but they are still relatively new to the industry. To […]

Read More

Brizo® Design + H2OKinetic® Technology = Performance, Efficiency and Comfort

Water conservation is, for some, as important as saving energy and resources. It’s why there are really strict water restrictions and usage guidelines in nearly every city. Certification programs like EPAs WaterSense Partnership Program help regulate the construction industry so we’re not over consuming at home. The biggest criticisms, though, of low-flow (2.0 gpm or less) […]

Read More

Hold the Foam! This Home is Already High Performance!

Before spray foam insulation was installed in the walls and roof-line of this Atlanta-area home, it tested better than the 2012 IECC requirements in climate zones 3-8 for building envelope tightness. The High Performance Home Several weeks ago we reported that the Proud Green Home at Serenbe, built by the Imery Group, achieved a blower door […]

Read More

Heat Flow, Electric Furnaces, and Lessons in Energy Efficient Design

When Jodi and and I moved from Tampa to Atlanta in 2008, we decided to try high rise living. We were living in a 1916 bungalow, which we loved dearly, and looked forward to something fresh and new. Something that would not leak like a sieve, and as a result be more comfortable and use less energy. The sales […]

Read More

Designing A Perfect Residential Wall – Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia has a reputation for getting pretty darn hot, but it can also get pretty dang cold (No snickering from you Northerners, please!). Believe it or not, Atlantans use more energy to heat their homes than they do to cool them. The design temperature set by ASHRAE for the Metro Atlanta area to use when designing heating systems, is […]

Read More

14 Design Don’ts for High Performance Homes, Part One

There are a lot of ways to design a home. Designing one for high performance, though, or even better-than-average performance, has many recommended best practices that are based on a lot of research of homes that have failed because they’re unhealthy, inefficient, and/or falling apart. This is why we have building scientists (see SOAP BOX […]

Read More

Design and Build Smart: Use Advanced Framing to Save Time, Money and Energy

Employing Advanced Framing Techniques during the design and construction phases saves on labor, material and the amount of heat loss in a new home. 25% of a the building shell area in a typical home is made of wood. The other 75% is primarily windows, doors, insulation, finishes and cladding. When you factor in the […]

Read More