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What is a passive house?

Do you want to know what a passive house is?

Discover it in this post!To understand better what a passive house really is and what advantages it can provide we will divide this post into three parts:

What is a passive house?

A passive house is a building that doesn't need traditional heating to maintain a pleasant temperature during the whole year. It substitutes the lifelong heating system, which consumes a lot of energy, for other ecological and healthy methods that are able to bring energy consumption to nearly zero.

However, which are these systems?

Primarily the sun that, as you already know, enters through your windows and warms up the house with its solar rays. The more the better and above all, don't let it escape!

Secondly, the energy you obtain simply doing what you always do. Cooking, making use of electronic devices, and even the heat your body gives off. It's surprising how much energy you can release by simply making a cup of coffee, an omelette or just watching TV. You just need to know how to use it.

Finally, reusing the hot air. If we open doors and windows, the hot air and expensive energy we have created will escape your house in a hurry. To prevent this, you will need a good ventilation system to renew the air.

What characteristics does a passive house have?

A passive house must meet certain requirements and characteristics:

An adequate orientation. It's important that these houses are located in the appropriate place to be able to benefit from the most sun radiation possible. If we build these houses in places where they are in constant shade, you can start forgetting about producing solar energy!

An intelligent design. As with the orientation, a strategic design, as could be one of large widows, will permit the entry of natural light. Just what you need!

Isolation of floors, walls and ceilings. There is no point in generating energy if you are not going to know how to maintain it. For this system to work the house must be perfectly isolated and the way to obtain this is using the appropriate materials. Don't let any energy escape!

Good doors and windows. Doors and windows are the weak spot of passive houses. Warm air can easily escape through them and that is why you must make sure they are of the best quality.

A ventilation system. As you can't open doors and windows to renew the air, you will need a system of ventilation to carry out this function. It must be a system that controls the airflow so that if it's cold, it uses the air you have generated and if it's hot, it integrates cold air.

An airtight environment. This means that in the house there must be no air currents. They will affect temperature and with it your energy savings.

Elimination of thermal bridges. Thermal bridges are those areas in your house where warm air is easily transmitted to other rooms. These areas are usually joints and axes where different materials coincide. The solution is to add another thermal isolating material.

What advantages does it provide?

In a passive house, controlling the entry of exterior air, the energetic consumption can range from 10 to 15 euros monthly. We don't even have to mention the saving this implies for a family.

To this saving, we must add many other advantages such as the comfort and well-being that these house produce. With this system, you will obtain a pleasant temperature during the whole year, with no warm or cold air currents and forget the noises. The building isolation will avoid these disturbing you.

Another fundamental advantage is its contribution to the environment, reducing the emissions of CO2. These are the "ideal" houses to stop contamination. Remember, climate change affects us all.

Definitely, these autonomous and efficient houses are the future!!

Published: 08 Feb 2017
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