Designed in modern minimalism, this family home embodies how smart and efficient a home can be. Designed by Stephen Fitzgerald Architects and built by Evolution, a division of Rilean Construction, this high-performance house benefits from increased thermal performance and self-generating power, resulting in low to no power bills.
The 140mm walls (R4.2) and ceiling (R5.2) benefit from increased insulation, a vapour check membrane (Intello) and minimal thermal bridging, requiring less energy to keep the home warm in winter, cool in summer. 5.6 KW Photo Voltaic (PV) panels with 4.8KW of storage in Enphase batteries will generate and store most of this home’s electricity needs, especially since an improved thermal envelope means the home needs little power to stay comfortable year-round.
Thermally-broken, recessed windows will minimize heat loss and eliminate condensation. The double-glazing is filled with argon-gas for better insulation and a Low-E coating protects the interior from harsh UV rays. The Econx automation and security system allows the occupants to control the heat, unlock the garage and turn off lights remotely from a computer or mobile.
The Moisture Master HX Heat Recovery System replaces the stale, moist air in the house with fresh air from outside, while recuperating heat in the exchange. The home is filled with fresh air at a constant, comfortable temperature. A 10,000-litre tank catches storm water, diverting it into the laundry, toilets and outside taps and easing demand on local infrastructure.
Care was used in selecting materials that are good for the occupants as well as the environment, such as low VOC paints, Eco-label carpet and composite decking made from reclaimed wood fibres are examples. By orienting the home to maximize the solar gains when the sun is out, very little artificial heat will be needed to keep it warm in winter. Conversely, the covered deck gives needed shade when the sun is at its highest and will keep the home nice and cool in summer.