Passive House video — Episode 2

Watch “Airtight Mudsills,” the second episode in a series of videos on the theory, design, and construction of a Passive House in ­Falmouth, Massachusetts

Watch the video

Produced by: Colin Russell and Justin Fink

Built to meet the world’s most rigorous standard for energy-efficient construction, a Passive HouseA residential building construction standard requiring very low levels of air leakage, very high levels of insulation, and windows with a very low U-factor. Developed in the early 1990s by Bo Adamson and Wolfgang Feist, the standard is now promoted by the Passivhaus Institut in Darmstadt, Germany. To meet the standard, a home must have an infiltration rate no greater than 0.60 AC/H @ 50 pascals, a maximum annual heating energy use of 15 kWh per square meter (4,755 Btu per square foot), a maximum annual cooling energy use of 15 kWh per square meter (1.39 kWh per square foot), and maximum source energy use for all purposes of 120 kWh per square meter (11.1 kWh per square foot). The standard recommends, but does not require, a maximum design heating load of 10 W per square meter and windows with a maximum U-factor of 0.14. The Passivhaus standard was developed for buildings in central and northern Europe; efforts are underway to clarify the best techniques to achieve the standard for buildings in hot climates. uses about one-tenth as much heating energy as a similarly sized older home. This feat is accomplished by carefully harmonizing countless design and construction details. At the time of this writing, just 71 houses have earned the Passive House Institute U.S. (PHIUS) certification.

Watch the video above; read the companion Fine Homebuilding article at right; and then join the conversation with the designer of this house, Architect Steve Baczek.

Over the course of the next several months — as each new issue of Fine Homebuilding magazine is released — this collection of articles and videos will cover:

Passive House design
Airtight mudsills
Superinsulated slab
Double-stud walls and insulation
Windows and doors

To watch Episode 1 of this video series, click here.

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Jun 6, 2014 5:08 PM ET

Mudsill Follies
by George Hawirko

Those problems mentioned in the clip, are redundant if the builder uses Structural EPS "Geofoam" for constructing the entire basement. Not only will you get SUPER INSULATION, but you avoid almost every problem associated with moisture.

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