115 Slate River Dr.
This house was designed and built by End Of The Road Construction with a very tight building envelope, and incorporates both active and passive solar components. The house requires very little energy from the power grid. It uses approximately 10-20% of the energy a similarly sized house would use in this extreme climate.
It has a very large garage that is used as a work space by the builder who owns it. A greenhouse that can produce enough vegetables for a family of four all winter is attached to the garage. The garage/greenhouse structure is traditionally built but is exceptionally insulated. No heat (besides the sun) is used in the winter to keep the garage at 50 degrees (or higher) and the greenhouse at 45 degrees (or higher). Most of the time both are above 60 degrees.
The house is straw bale construction. The outside is a mix of stucco and wood siding. The stucco is a traditional cement based stucco with a final coat of silicate mineral paints to allow for vapor permeability and durability. There is a metal shingle skirt around the whole house. The shingles were made on site by our company.
The garage and the house, together, form a C shaped courtyard that is sunny but protected from the prevailing winds.
The inside of the house has many interesting custom features including clay plaster walls, site made custom floor tiles, site made custom concrete counter tops, locally milled wood sills and wood floors, a highly efficient induction range, adobe floors, clay and straw mass walls to absorb the winter time solar radiation, and much more.
The active solar system is composed of a 15 panel 3.75 Kw PV array and a hydronic system composed of 6 full size panels. The PV system is grid tied so that when it produces more than the house uses the excess is sent to the grid to be used by someone else. When power is going from the house to the grid the electric meter spins backwards. The hydronic system is connected to a 550 gallon storage tank that, in turn, is connected to the in-floor heating system and the domestic hot water system.
As with all our houses there is also a heat recovery ventilator included to provide fresh air without wasting heat in the winter.
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