Project Specs

Location: Cobble Hill, British Columbia
Building Type: Single Family Residential
Project Phase: Under Construction
Certification Type: None
Year of Construction: 2019
Gross Floor Area (m2): 372

Project Description

This is my first attempt at reaching the passive house standard with hopefully many more to come!

The house is situated on a 3 acre lot oriented due south with a gentle slope making it perfect for a walk-out basement; with wide open views of Baldy Mountain and plenty of trees for shade and privacy. The lot was originally treed with fir and cedar. In order to take advantage of the southern exposure and solar gain needed I cleared half of the lot. Not to worry! Every tree was milled producing 50,000 board feet which is being used as timber framing, siding, flooring, sofit, and some ship lap feature walls.

I chose a QuadLock ICF wall system from footings to trusses. The wall is an R43 construction with 7″ exterior EPS, 8″ Concrete core (below grade and 6″ above grade), and 3″ interior EPS. The wall is continuous for two stories with the floor made of 18″ web trusses suspended on a 2″x12″ leger secured with Simpson ICFVL ties.

For the roof trusses I used a 4/12 pitch with a 19″ raised heel (energy truss). This will allow for R82 of lose fill cellulose. I incorporated a 4′ overhang in the trusses to provide sufficient shading and eliminate water infiltration from above. The air vapor barrier for the ceiling is made with Siga Myrex membrane, a one way vapor permeable product.

Windows and doors are all passive certified from EuroLine.

HRV is the Zehnder Q600 with a 1500w pre and post heater.

The builder on the project is Lucas Tubman, owner of Limitless Carpentry. With no experience in Passive House design or construction he worked tirelessly and with a passion to learn and understand the details needed to make this project a success. A good builder who is willing to learn new methods is key to the success of a passive house project.

The main challenge we had to overcome was being new to ICF we failed to adequately stage all of the 20 tons of rebar for the job which added time and cost to the project to sort through and handle the steel.