Fairfield County Green Home Building Strategy #1 – Passive Solar

Country Club Homes, Inc. is an award winning Connecticut custom home building company continuing the family tradition of building high-quality, sustainable homes in Fairfield County, Connecticut since 1955. Now more than ever the need for sustainable and ecologically sensitive design is in demand. Country Club Homes is an environmentally aware custom home builder committed to incorporating passive solar technologies into our custom new home design and remodeling work, according to the preferences and design objectives of each client.

This is the first in a 3-part series of posts on the subject of green home building. The other two posts are easily linked at:

Fairfield County Green Home Building Strategy #2 – Energy Saving Materials & Systems
Fairfield County Green Home Building Strategy #3 – Building Envelope & Air Quality

Country Club Homes Fairfield County Home Builder Passive Solar

Bright Sunny Stairwell Designed by Country Club Homes of Fairfield County CT

The use of passive solar theory and technology in new and remodeled home design serves everyone – it is the classic “win-win” design approach. The homeowner saves money long term as life cycle cost benefits kick in, and Country Club Homes is able to maintain industry standards for stewardship of energy and material resources in the design and construction process.

The passive solar technologies that are utilized to create ecologically sound, and energy efficient homes are:

Direct Solar Heat Gain.
Direct solar heat gain through the windows results from direct solar penetration into a space, increasing the interior spatial temperature.

Indirect Solar Heat Gain.
Indirect solar heat gain results from heat gain due to direct solar penetration into intermediate materials which store heat such as a south facing water tank, or brick or stone masonry wall.

Thermal Mass Heat Storage.
Thermal mass stores heat during the warmer part of the day to be utilized at a later, cooler time. Examples of thermal heat storage systems are a Trombe wall, ventilated concrete floor, cistern, water wall or roof pond. A Trombe wall faces the sun’s penetrating rays during the day absorbing heat into a wall constructed of an absorbent material surrounded by air and walled with a glass skin. It absorbs heat during the day, and radiates it into the space at night during cooler temperatures.

Insulation and Glazing.
Passive solar insulation and glazing systems include a wide array of products which provide high levels of insulation in conjunction with heat transmission qualities. Examples of this would be skylights, double glazed window systems, bi-fold interior insulation shutters, and shades.

Passive Cooling.
Passive cooling accomplishes reduction in interior temperatures by slowing heat transfer into a building, and strategically removing heated air from the building without mechanical means. This is done by window ventilation.

Country Club Homes Fairfield County Home Builder Passive SolarThese are the primary passive solar strategies the residential construction industry incorporates into sustainable home design. These are utilized in conjunction with passive solar site orientation guidelines.

Where practical, it is also a best practice to design a portion of the building to sit below grade to benefit from earth sheltering. Earth sheltering uses earth against building walls to prevent heat loss and also uses stable below grade temperatures to control the temperature on the interior of the home.

Country Club Homes, Inc. is committed to green building – designing environmentally sensitive custom new homes and home remodeling projects that incorporate energy efficient passive solar technologies. We welcome residential clients who are committed to incorporating these technologies into home design and construction.

If you are planning a custom new home or home remodeling work and are seeking architectural design and construction services in the Fairfield County, Connecticut area, please contact us at 203-762-0550 or through the Country Club Homes, Inc. website.

Image Source: Country Club Homes Portfolio