What are some thing to keep in mind if you are making a green living house?

By green I mean earth friendly. I want to know how to make a really well design house, maybe a beach house

2 thoughts on “What are some thing to keep in mind if you are making a green living house?”

  1. Placement on the site, placement of the windows or natural light sources, and the surrounding landscaping are critical. There is a good argument for summer and winter energy reduction through the use of roof over-hangs/porches of 18" or more. We seem to be returning to "zones" throughout the house for both heating and cooling. Window coverings seem to passively mitigate winter and summer extremes pretty well too; in hot/high sun areas this includes exterior shutter arrangements. Essentially, the best way to reduce energy use is to reduce the need to use it in the first place. It makes the operational costs cheaper too.

    I have three general concerns about many of the "efficient" houses I see. The first is that there is something "wrong" in my view when one must run one or more fans for hours on end because the house is sealed so tight that the air must be exchanged with outside air using an energy source. Back in the day, and the days before that day, when you wanted fresh air in a place you opened a window. While you may not want to need to open a window when the snow is blowing sideways at 50mph, I think that simply the ability to periodically open windows for fresh air and to circulate air within the house makes things more comfortable with less energy use; for those hot summer days, being able to passively draw cool air from off the beach’s water while pushing interior hot air outside would be nice. The second is that I’m not fully convinced that many of the "green" houses are particularly survivable should there be a house fire. My concern is not so much the sporead of the fire but, the fumes generated. The third is that it seems as if a number of the "green" house designs are not built with repairs in mind. Some are built with cement encased radiant heating and cooling systems and other features designed to last 20 years, or even 50 years. In the world of modular houses, 20 years is a long time; although I’ve seen some 40 year old plus trailers in pretty darned great condition with proper maintenance. In the world of stick houses, it is not. Even 50 years is not that long in the world of better built and better maintained stick houses. It would seem that repair, repair access, and replacement capabilities would be more "green" than building a shorter lived structure.

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