Earth Wise Home

An Earth Wise Home starts with an air tight thermal envelope.  We use ZipWall coated wall sheathing with all joints taped and sealed to create an air tight thermal envelope.  Every cubic foot of air that doesn't get in is one less cubic foot of air to heat or cool.

We insulate all window and door headers.  It's impossible to insulate these spaces after framing is complete.  We use about 1 roll of insulation per 1000 sf of home insulating these areas.  Imagine removing a few rolls of insulation from the average home and what effect it would have on the utility bill.  That's what has been done to 99% of all homes.

We pre insulate all exterior corners and tees which are rendered inaccessible by the exterior wall sheathing.

We use high performance vinyl windows with hurricane impact glass, low e coating, argon gas, and Neat Glass. 

Neat Glass is a coating which reacts with the sun's UV rays to decompose organic materials on the glass and cause them to rinse off with the rain.

We use open cell foam insulation for maximum thermal and air infiltration performance.

We spend all day caulking and sealing every window, door, exterior penetration, crack, and void.  Then we test the building with our door fan to make sure we got everything.  This one day makes a huge difference in the thermal performance of the home.

Blown in batts insulation fills every crack and void in the wall cavities minimizing thermal voids and gaps that add up to a substantial increase in effective R value compared with conventional fiberglass batt insulation.

Excess insulation is removed with a rotary rasp.

We use regular fiberglass batts on interior walls to reduce sound transmission.  This along with solid core doors help reduce noise pollution from inside and outside the home so you can enjoy your private spaces in peace and quiet.

We use our door fan to measure air leakage at the framing stage and again at completion.  It's not enough just to do all the right things and hope for the best.  It's critical to test for success and find all the areas that were missed and seal them up.  We don't just say we build a high performance energy efficient home, we prove it!

The door fan draws a 50 pascal vacuum on the building which simulates a 20 mph wind on all 4 sides and top of the home and measures the number of air changes per hour leaking into the home (ACH50).

These are the national performance guidelines:

1.5 - 4 ACH = High Performance Home

4    - 7 ACH = Energy Efficient Home

8    - 12ACH = Standard New Home

11  - 21ACH = Standard Existing Home

18  - 35ACH = Standard Older Home


Jasper uses a smoke pencil to track down and seal air leaks during a door fan test.

We use 16 SEER 2 speed heat pumps with variable speed air handlers for quiet energy efficient operation.  Electronic air filters capture and kill airborne contaminates.  Communicating thermostats monitor indoor, outdoor temperatures, and humidity to optimize system performance and interior comfort. 

A high performance heating and cooling system combined with an air tight and thoroughly insulated home creates the conditions for even temperature distribution and much greater comfort.  We home run all bedroom return air ducts and introduce fresh air with an outside air duct to ensure full air circulation with fresh and clean indoor air quality.

Hybrid water heaters use a heat pump mounted on top of the water heater to heat the water most of the time.  These water heaters reduce the cost of heating water by 25-70%.

This 50 watt Incandescent halogen bulb is operating at 313 degrees.  Multiply that by the number of bulbs in an average home and you can imagine how much cooling load that ads to a home.

This 8 watt LED bulb is putting out the same number of lumens as a 50 watt incandescent bulb and operates at 1/2 the temperature.

Radiant floor heating is a great way to warm up a bathroom and increase comfort in a bathroom or kitchen zone without heating the whole house.  It's so nice to step on warm tile on a cold winter's day.

Interior borate termite treatment ensures maximum termite protection.  We pretreat the slab, treat the wood, and apply a perimeter soil treatment.  This triple barrier protection helps protect your home from devastating termite damage.

Logan with Eager Beaver Professional Tree Care prunes a heritage oak.  Part of our job is to be good stewards of the natural attributes of your lot.  It starts with determining which trees can be saved then restoring their health. 

Neglected Oaks will tend to be top heavy, unbalanced, and vulnerable to wind damage by hurricanes.  The first step is to create a pruning plan which lifts the canopy, prunes out the weak branches, lightens the load on the tree, and lets air flow through the canopy instead of catching it and stressing the major branches.  Once the tree has been properly pruned, shaped, and balanced you'll be surprised at how these large heritage oaks will perk up and put out lots of new growth and how well they will endure hurricanes. 

You can't buy this type of natural beauty so it's all of our responsibility to preserve what we have, care for it, and be good stewards of our environment.

We use rain bird advanced irrigation controls which automatically adjust your watering times based on temperature, rain fall, sunshine, season, soil conditions, lawn species, and topography.  Bill is installing the weather station which feeds weather data to the controller.  This type of system uses less water, less energy, and produces a healthier yard, with less attention from the owner.  Living better and cheaper with less work.  what's not to love? Learn more at Rain Bird smart irrigation controls.

An Earth Wise Home is a high performance energy efficient home built to the highest standards of energy efficiency utilizing the most cost effective methods, products, and technologies to produce a home that is comfortable, clean, and inexpensive to operate.

Les White, Acorn Construction General Contractor, #RG0055853
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