The 4 Must Have Features to a Solar Passive House Design

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Passive House Design is design that takes advantage of the climate to maintain a comfortable temperature range in the home. Passive design reduces or eliminates the need for auxiliary heating or cooling, which accounts for about 40% (or much more in some climates) of energy use in the average Australian home. So how do we achieve this? Read on for our 4 must have features to obtaining a Solar Passive House Design.

1. Eave & Sill Heights
One of the greatest ways to create a more energy efficient home is to design sill heights and eave overhangs that allow the sun in during winter and block direct sun in summer. A standard eave width provided by Greenmark Homes and most Dubbo builders is 450mm. For added protection upgrade to a 600mm wide eave particularly if your living areas are facing north.


2. Solar Pergola
Solar Pergolas are designed to block the hot overhead sun in summertime but allows the low lying winter sun into the home during the cooler months. In Dubbo the ideal angle of a solar pergola louvres (facing north) is between 30˚ – 33˚ and should have a sun study to confirm optimum angles. This is a great way to enjoy all seasons and increase your homes passive solar performance. Ask Greenmark homes building designer to incorporate this idea in your new home or renovation.


3. Designing for Orientation
Greenmark Homes key philosophy to good design begins with orientation. Customers at Greenmark homes are provided with designs that are tailored to their site orientation and not to a replicated stock standard design used for the builders convenience. This means the design process take a little longer but leaves clients with a home that has living areas enjoying plenty of natural, northern sunlight and a home that has a higher BASIX (Building Sustainability Index) rating.

4.Thermal Mass
Thermal mass is a tricky one and is often misused. In hotter climates like Dubbo and most towns within the general central west (Climate Zone 4 / Region A) should aim to have thermal mass on the internal of the house instead of the external.

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3 Comments

  1. Sarah Smiths on July 23, 2020 at 3:34 pm

    I had no idea that there is such a science to solar pergolas. The need to have it at the exact right angle to block the sun in the summer and let in the heat in the winter is so fascinating. I was just looking up a way to design a house to be more environmentally friendly; I didn’t expect there to be so much thought and engineering to get it right. I will have to find a professional home designer so that everything goes correctly.

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