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Sourcing energy conscious materials

It’s taken many months of planning and fine-tuning but the Glasswing project is starting to take shape — literally.

The steel trusses and wood framing are complete, and the roof, windows and doors installed. And now that the “outer shell” is complete, work can get started on the energy-efficient details.

Reflective roof tiling

Matt Johnson says that in order to achieve a LEED® certification, it’s important to consider the types of materials used in construction. As an example, he explains that the roof tiling will be one-of-a-kind in the Okanagan valley. Manufacturer IKO is supplying ‘cool roofing tiles’ that can reflect more than 70 per cent of the sun’s energy. This is important because the hot Okanagan sun striking the roof can send attic temperatures skyrocketing, driving heated air downward into the cool comfort of the home envelope.

Johnson says he is also working with Sanyo to supply solar panels that will capture the energy deflected from the roof.

“So while we don’t want the heat from the sun in the house, we don’t want to waste it,” he adds.

Above code insulation

So far as the insulation, Johnson says they are increasing the building code requirement by 10 per cent. In the basement walls, a one-inch rigid insulation board was installed between the frost wall and the concrete. Rigid insulation board has a high insulating value per unit thickness and reduces any air circulation between the wall and the concrete.

Efficient windows

All of the windows are ENERGY STAR® rated and include an invisible coat of protection that traps heat inside during the winter months and reflects heat back towards the outside during the summer.

Overall airtightness

Johnson explains that the most important detail when it comes to constructing an energy-efficient home is ensuring that it’s airtight.
“It’s crucial because if you’re losing heat in the winter or heating your home unnecessarily in the summer, it will affect your energy costs and ultimately whether the home is truly energy efficient.  Every day, we’re looking at the details and determining what is the right thing to do within a reasonable cost and a lot of that goes back to making sure the home is airtight.”