Passive house - what it is and how to treat them
In the current ecological age when people learn to think how to protect nature, the subject of the passive house becomes increasingly popular. Moreover, there are legislative changes done by states and international organizations, which aim is to increase the number of passive and low energy houses. So, what exactly the term “passive house” represents?
There are more degrees of energy-efficient houses - saving, low energy, passive, zero and plus homes. The level is influenced by numerous factors: the quality of insulation, airtightness, ventilation technology with recuperation, alternative-heating independent of traditional resources and more. The designation “passive house” is used for houses that consume minimum energy with almost zero heat loss and heat gain from the sun and expelled air. Its precursor is a low-energy house.
Although the initial costs for passive houses are higher (about 20% than for low-energy houses), you must realize, that you invest in your future, retirement. Besides saving the environment you also save your own money. Passive house has significantly lower energy consumption. Energy need for heating in passive house must be below 15 kWh/m2, in case of the low-energy houses, the upper limit is 50 kWh/m2. The saving is 85% in comparison of standard new building.
The passive house:
• Specific annual consumption for heating max 15 kWh/m2a.
• Airtightness of the building at an overpressure or negative pressure of 50 Pa must be below 0.6 hour-1 (i.e. there must not be an exchange of internal air volume by more than 60% per hour)
What affects the energy efficiency of the house
• Land - Passive house should not be shielded by other buildings and trees.
• Orientation of the house - Glass surfaces should be oriented to the sun (ideally south).
• The shape of the house - Shape of passive houses is not limited. It is not a necessity to have a flat roof. It is essential that the shape of house is compact without unnecessary bends and projections.
• The quality of the used material – It is important to compare the value for money. The most expensive is not always the most effective.
• Technology - air-conditioning with recuperation, own source of energy - solar panels, ad.
• Quality of insulation - insulation is extensive, it is important to avoid thermal bridging (heat loss).
• Windows - Quality windows with triple glazing and insulated frames.
In 2010, the directive 2010/31/EU - EPBD II on the energy performance of buildings was adopted by the European Union. The aim of this paper is, that all new houses will have nearly zero consumption in the year 2020. Member States are obliged to adjust its legislation according to EU directives. In the Czech Republic, the adjustments are set out in Act No. 318/2012 Coll. on energy management and in amendment of Decree 148/2007 on the energy performance of buildings. So Let’s start thinking energetically and in case of construction a house or other building, think about passive solutions too.
- Savings in heating
- Energy self-sufficiency, independence on energy prices
- Ventilation without drafts, dust and dirt
- Ensuring pleasant temperatures in winter and summer
- A constant supply of fresh air
- Comfortable and ecological housing
Our architectural studio builds low-energy and passive houses more than 10 years already. So feel free to contact us with any questions and we will advise you.
17. 7. 2013, 09:01:48