previous
  • Remodeling in Action
    Remodeling in Action
  • The Passive House Build
    The Passive House Build
  • Electrical Articles & Videos
    Electrical Articles & Videos
  • Buyer's Guide to Insulation
    Buyer's Guide to Insulation
  • 12 Remodeling Secrets
    12 Remodeling Secrets
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
  • Deck Design & Construction
    Deck Design & Construction
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • The Hobbit House and More
    The Hobbit House and More
  • Video: Build a curved step
    Video: Build a curved step
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • Play the Inspector Game!
    Play the Inspector Game!
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • How to Install Housewrap Solo
    How to Install Housewrap Solo
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • Shorten a Prehung Door
    Shorten a Prehung Door
next
Pin It

A Practical Approach to Passive House

An architect's "best work to date" is a super-efficient home that you could build

Passive House standards are the strictest residential-building parameters in the United States. Because of that, details such as window selection and the continuity of a bead of caulk can make the difference between whether or not a house is tight enough to meet the standards. Architect Steven Baczek describes in this article how he built a Passive House with standard building materials and construction techniques. Key to the project's success was lots of planning and buy-in from everyone involved: the homeowner, the architect, the energy consultant, the general contractor, and the subs. Together, they built a house that conforms to Baczek's goal in building high-performance houses: They should convert energy as inexpensively as possible and hold on to that energy for as long as possible. Baczek provides detailed construction plans for the following tasks: building double walls (one 2x4 and one 2x6), insulating above the slab, breaking the thermal bridge at the second floor, using a vented truss roof, and detailing windows in thick walls. Baczek believes not only that this house is the best one he's ever designed, but that it can be replicated by any homeowner, builder, or architect.

A Practical Approach to Passive House

Become a Fine Homebuilding Member

to view this article and over a thousand more

Learn More