Sunday, July 22, 2012

Home Insulation Project

Another step in making our house more energy efficient was adding more insulation to the walls by putting 8 inches of styrofoam on the outside, taking us from 2 inch walls to 10 inches. Ronn Lepage of VerEco Homes designed this system, and Evolution Developments did a great job of installing it.

There are various ways to make well insulated walls when you're building a new house, but it's not so easy with an existing older house. And there are a lot of poorly insulated older houses.

You have to remove the old siding, so this process makes most sense if you want to replace your siding anyway. (We sold the old vinyl siding, so thankfully it didn't end up in the landfill.) The next step is installing the deeper window boxes (visible below). When they delivered the insulation it filled our driveway.



Because it's only the second house in Saskatoon to get this treatment the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) installed sensors in the walls to monitor it. It'll be interesting to see how it performs.

Here's the end result. Other than the deeper windows, it looks pretty normal. We put on Hardie Board cement fiber siding. It's a fairly green option that is tough, durable, long lasting, and fire resistant.


Our new climbing themed house numbers.


We've already noticed the house is quieter and cooler. We have air conditioning (it was in the house when we bought it) but we haven't used it this year. Even with the recent heat wave the house has stayed a reasonable temperature. It will be interesting to see how it does in the winter.

We're pretty happy with our little "green" house, even if it's not anywhere close to current super-sized McMansion standards. I recently talked to someone who was planning to enlarge their garage because it wasn't big enough for all their "toys". (The real problem is that the world isn't big enough for all our toys.) He was only a little sheepish when I pointed out that my 1100 square foot house would already fit inside their 1300 square foot garage.

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