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Passive solar help please!

Posted by sdegraff77 (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 16, 13 at 0:34

I have been lurking on here for a while and am very interested in passive solar for our new build. It is an inner city 50-120ft lot.
The front door faces north and the attached garage and back yard face south.
We are in Calgary AB Canada it that helps as well

My husband is very happy with our current design and isnt sure he would make massive changes into increase it's solar passivity! I feel most changes would be well worth it.

Any feed back on our current lay out would be much appreciated. Especially window placement and the covered rear and front porches.


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RE: Passive solar help please!

Hi sdegraff, your interest in passive solar is a good one. You can provide 40-90% free heating, have more daylighting and have better passive survivability. A north entry lot is ideal for passive solar.

Unfortunately, the plan you have chosen is not going to work without major modification. You need 9-12% of window area to floor area to face south and be unshaded. I see 0% useful glass unless there is an upstairs.

I understand that redesigning at this point is not likely but I think if you did find another design that fits your needs and has passive solar elements, it would make your lives happier and reduce your monthly energy costs dramatically. Most importantly though, make sure your building envelope is airtight and continuously insulated. Do the canadian R-2000 certification if you can.


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RE: Passive solar help please!

Thank you so much for the response Brian_Knight !

That is what I was afraid of. With a rear attached garage i am not sure we could make that percentage. If the rear porch wasnt covered would that help?

There is a second floor. I have attached they layout. Not sure if it helps.

We do plan to ensure the envelope is airtight and continuously sealed.


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