Timber frame home reaches net zero with solar panels

Timber frame home reaches net zero with solar panels

The CreekSide Net Zero Home was featured in the Pro Tour in Central New York, featuring a hybrid timber frame design.

On June 17, 2016, the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association (NESEA) held its first Pro Tour in Central New York featuring the net-zero CreekSide home. It's a hybrid construction that includes a custom timber frame designed and crafted by New Energy Works Timberframers.

Net-zero means that a home produces as much energy as it consumes. The homeowners partnered with New Energy Works Timberframers to design a hybrid timber frame home that features natural lighting, on-site photovoltaic (PV) array, and several other elements to help reduce its carbon footprint.

“We’ve used our backgrounds in engineering and art to creatively collaborate with the teams of New Energy Works to build CreekSide Net-Zero – our dream home. The project exemplifies what can be achieved when great collaboration, ingenuity, building energy expertise, and creativity come together,” explains Tom Lambert, homeowner and owner of CreekSide Energy Solutions.

NESEA Pro Tours are an opportunity for members to showcase the incredible work they are doing all over the Northeast. About 25 people attended the NESEA Pro Tour of CreekSide on June 17, 2016. Lambert, a graduate of the Zero Net Energy Homes course in the Building Energy Masters Series, answered questions throughout the tour, along with other project partners and experts. The homeowners both offered their perspectives on living in a house built to the stringent net zero standards.

Tour attendees commented that it was “valuable to have the homeowners’ perspectives, to hear from industry experts, as well as to have an opportunity to network with like-minded people”.

Director of Program Development at NESEA, Miriam Aylward said, “This Pro Tour was our first event in Central New York, and it was inspiring to meet the members of the NESEA community in the region who are moving this important work forward. CreekSide's Net Zero home is beautiful and thoughtful in every detail, and was born out of his interaction with other NESEA members and programs, such as our conferences and online courses. It's an honor to have been part of the journey of such a fantastic project!”

The frame of the house utilizes Douglas Fir timbers, as well as Black Cherry and White Oak lumber harvested from the property for interior millwork. The millwork includes custom made cabinetry from NEWwoodworks, the fine woodworking division of New Energy Works, as well as reclaimed wood floors and from Pioneer Millworks. Overall the home marries finely tuned energy and enclosure solutions with an environment suited for creating artwork, woodworking and a generally relaxed retirement lifestyle.

Other Project Features:

  • 2,853 sq.ft.
  • 10,260 watt ground mount solar array consisting of 36 SW 285 mono panels with Enphase M250 micro inverters
  • Projected PV production of 12,702 kWh/yr
  • Air infiltration rate is .028ACH50 which is 53% lower than the Passive House Institute target
  • Inline fiberglass triple pane windows
  • Mitsubishi ducted air source heat pump
  • Pre-panelized 12-inch walls and 18-inch roof
  • Euroshield EuroLite Slate eco friendly rubber roofing
  • Insulation materials include dense pack cellulose, Roxul and Foamglas and minimal use of foam board

“Our goal was to build a net-zero energy house with a low carbon footprint that is also aesthetically pleasing. To us that means a house with soul, built in harmony and balance with the environment that will help nurture our creative spirits,” explains homeowner, Ann Buchau. The homeowners will monitor, collect, and share data on the home’s energy use over the next several years while enjoying the space with their family. “We were very excited to be a Pro Tour with the NESEA. We’re looking forward to living in our dream home in a way that’s healthy for us and the environment.”

Read more about building green homes.


Topics: Building Green, Certification / LEED, Energy Audits, Energy Star

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