Monday, May 1, 2017

House tour checklist


Welcome to the Potwine Passive House, the first certified Passivhaus in Western Massachusetts. Follow along the checklist to make sure you see all of the features of the home.



2.5 kW solar PV array powers the entire home over a one year time frame

Durable standing steam metal roof

Gravel around the perimeter with perforated pipe collects rainwater and discharges near the apple trees

Air gap between siding and walls exhausts at roof apex, allows air flow to prevent moisture buildup

South facing window glazing captured the sunlight in the winter

Intake and exhaust vents for the Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV) are located high on the east facing wall

Heat pump compressor

Wild meadow managed with regenerative techniques, trimmed with a scythe

Cat litter compost pile (dont step in it!)



Passive house glass door

Coat rack under stairs saves space

Opening to stairway brings in natural daylight

Half bath under stairway saves space

Open layout with large windows creates a feeling of spaciousness



Long linear counter creates the illusion of bountiful space

Induction stove boils water quickly and is twice as efficient as a gas stove

Combi steam oven cooks an entire meal quickly and all at once (full chicken in 20 minutes)

On demand hot water heater located under sink for instantaneous hot water with minimal line losses

IKEA cabinets store kitchen items efficiently with convenient access

Upper wall cabinets are absent, creating an open feel

Vent-a-hood recirculating hood filters particulates and smells without exhausting to the exterior

Exhaust vent to ERV above fridge

Living/dining room


Concrete floor absorbs heat during the day and reradiates heat at night

Polish on concrete floor is simply mechanical, a "diamond grid sands finish" that looks great without toxic finishes and requires no maintenance

Tripled paned windows feel warm even when it is cold outside, enlarge the useful area of the room

Tripled paned windows open wide for full ventilation and tilt for less air flow (careful: do not turn handle while window is in the open position)

On demand hot water for the shower in chase closet

Drain water heat recovery pipe in chase closet

Heat pump indoor unit above chase closet in quiet and efficient

ERV is controlled by the iPad in the pantry

Pressure valve at the south facing window door allows for monitoring of the ventilator air flow balance

Garden Tower Project indoor worm composting bin planted with herbs, mixed greens, and kale



Locally harvested Eastern White Pine floors, wide plank, face-nailed

Window placement at end of line-of-sight draws the eye outdoors

Double doors to the study open up the space

Wide hallway creates the illusion of an abundance of space

Washer inset into wall saves space, turns hallway into multipurpose laundry area

Gabled ceilings make the bedrooms feel large

LED track lighting is dimmable, efficient, and bright

ERV vents bring filtered, fresh air to the bedrooms where it is needed the most

Shower control allows for independent selection of the water temperature and the flow rate

Energy monitor displays energy usage of every single item in the home

No temperature differential between upstairs and downstairs, regardless of the season



Blown in fiberglass insulation

Taping at ceiling between plywood pieces

Attic is contained within the thermal envelope