In the first part of this series, we reviewed the ways builders can increase the sustainability of the homes they build by controlling air infiltration - a major culprit in reducing energy efficiency and homeowner comfort.
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In the first part of this series, we reviewed the ways builders can increase the sustainability of the homes they build by controlling air infiltration - a major culprit in reducing energy efficiency and homeowner comfort. Nothing suggested was "out of the ordinary," but rather a simple, subtle shift in thinking and planning, according to residential architect Peter Pfeiffer, Barley & Pfeiffer Architects, Austin, Tex. At the National Green Building Conference in Denver, Pfeiffer defined green building as "creative thinking that comes up with locally appropriate strategies to construct houses that make the most efficient use of materials and land while of-fering buyers greater comfort and a longer-lasting home."
Now we'll continue exploring ways to integrate sustainable practices into existing home designs and construction practices by reviewing Pfeiffer's tips on eliminating unwanted solar gain and managing lighting loads.
Unwanted Solar Gain
To keep a home cooler, increase homeowner comfort and reduce energy usage, Pfeiffer says builders should consider the following:
Protecting a home from outside sources of heat is only half of the solution, says Pfeiffer. Builders need to consider internal lighting loads and investigate new options, specifically:
In the final installment of this series we'll review mechanical systems, landscaping and one of the most important and overlooked aspects of green building - home buyer education.
Heather McCune is the Editor-in-Chief for Professional Builder and Luxury Home Builder. Please email her with any comments or questions regarding her column.