Welcome to the wonderful world of building science! As an innovative home builder, Inspire Homes is always looking for ways to make our homes more sustainable, comfortable, and energy-efficient. Building science is the key to achieving these goals, and we’re excited to share some of the basics with you.
At its core, building science is all about understanding how buildings work. This includes everything from how heat and moisture move through a home to how the structure responds to natural disasters like earthquakes and hurricanes. By applying this knowledge, we can create homes that are healthier, more efficient, and more resilient. In this blog, we’ll break down the three main benefits of building science: saving energy and money, breathing easy, and building for the long-term.
Saving Energy and Money
Let’s start with the most obvious benefit of building science: saving energy and money. When you invest in an energy-efficient home, you’ll see the savings in your monthly utility bills. But it’s not just about saving money – it’s also about reducing your carbon footprint and doing your part to protect the environment. We use a variety of techniques to create energy-efficient homes. Focusing on air sealing to prevent air leakage and heat loss, and the use of high-performance windows and insulation to keep the heat inside during the winter and outside during the summer. We also incorporate energy-efficient appliances and lighting to further reduce energy consumption. By incorporating these strategies, we’re able to create homes that are up to 50% more energy-efficient than traditional homes.
- Energy sealing techniques to prevent air leaks through sealing gaps and cracks around sheetrock, windows, doors, ductwork, plumbing penetrations, and electrical wiring.
- Ductless mini splits are highly efficient heating and cooling systems that use an outdoor unit and one or more indoor units to provide targeted temperature control without the need for ductwork.
- Heat pump hybrid electric water heaters, which are highly efficient and require less energy to heat water than traditional electric water heaters.
- High-quality windows with a U value of .24 or lower to reduce heat loss and gain, resulting in lower energy bills and improved comfort.
- Raised-heel attic trusses are used to increase insulation space, and can improve energy efficiency by up to 25%.
- Blown-in blanket insulation (BIBS) blown into wall cavities to create a seamless, airtight layer of insulation.
- Enclosed soffits and continuous ridge venting to ventilate attic space and reduce moisture buildup.
- Proper flashing installation around doors and windows to prevent air and water leaks..
- Water-conserving fixtures in general, can use 20-60% less water than traditional fixtures.
- Energy Star appliances are designed to meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which can save you up to 30% on your energy bills compared to non-certified appliances.
- LED lighting can save up to 75% more energy than traditional incandescent lighting.
- Continuous ridge venting for superior attic ventilation.
Creating a healthy indoor environment is crucial for maintaining good health, which is why building science plays a significant role in achieving this goal. At Inspire Homes, we focus on ventilation, filtration, and moisture management to ensure that your home is a healthy place to live. We use ductless mini-split systems equipped with filters that can trap airborne particles, such as dust, pollen, and pet dander, thereby improving indoor air quality. Additionally, we use low-emission materials like No/Low-VOC paints, adhesives, and sealants to minimize the release of harmful chemicals into the indoor air. Moisture management is also essential in preventing mold and mildew growth, which can cause respiratory problems. Therefore, we use moisture-resistant materials and design our homes to promote good airflow and drainage. By implementing these strategies, we create homes that are not only energy-efficient but also healthy and comfortable places to live.
- The garage fan is designed to ventilate the garage, which in turn, enhances the quality of air, and minimizes the risk of carbon monoxide buildup.
- Using no/low-VOC materials can help to improve indoor air quality, create a healthier living space, and minimize harmful VOCs.
- Ductless mini-split systems are equipped with filters that can trap airborne particles, such as dust, pollen, and pet dander.
- PEX-A piping is made from high-quality, cross-linked polyethylene material that is durable and resistant to corrosion, which can prevent the release of harmful chemicals into the water supply.
- Air and moisture barriers, such as flashing and sealants, can prevent air and water leaks that can contribute to the growth of mold and mildew.
- Bottom sill plate glued/nailed and sealed. Helps insure a tighter home for better indoor air quality
Building for the Long-Term
Finally, building science is important for creating a home that will stand the test of time.. The use of high-quality building materials and techniques ensures that the homes are structurally sound and can withstand weather and wear. Additionally, these homes are low-maintenance and equipped with features such as durable siding and roofing materials and easy-to-clean surfaces. Inspire Homes also prioritizes personalization, working closely with clients to design a home that caters to their unique preferences and lifestyle, from the layout of the home to the finishes and fixtures. With this approach, the homes built by Inspire Homes are not only beautiful and functional but also made to last for years to come.
- Toungue and groove subfloor, glued/nailed with low VOC glue. Multiple fastening methods insure a stronger, stiffer floor system, reducing floor squeaks.
- Engineered wood I-Joist floor joists.
- Triple capillary break between pressure treated mudsill and foundation.
- Steel reinforced foundation wall.
- Tipped window sills to exterior for water management.
- High performance comp roof shingles with SureNail® Technology, 130 mph wind rating and StreakGuard® algae resistance protection for superior home protection.
- Ice and water shield with 2” drip edges.
- Superior flashing + weather inhibitors for sustainability.
- Cement lap siding with DuPont™ Tyvek® DrainWrap™ air and moisture barrier & flashing.
Building science may not be the most glamorous topic, but it’s a crucial aspect of creating a home that is truly exceptional. At Inspire Homes, we take pride in our commitment to building science, and we believe that it’s the key to creating homes that are energy-efficient, healthy, and comfortable. If you’re in the process of building a home, we encourage you to consider the benefits of building science