Our take on the positive and negative points of insulated concrete forms.
Once the ICFs are in place and the walls are very well reinforced, it is time to pour concrete. This blog illustrates the process in words and photos.
To ensure an airtight design, be sure to level and finish the top of the concrete wall and use sill seal below your bottom plates.
This blog describes some of the details involved in building with insulating concrete forms, notably window and door buck details that you need to take into account
The devil is in the details in a net zero energy home. Every single step in the design and construction of a home requires efforts to ensure airtightness. The top of the foundation is one detail that deserves special attention.
Scaffolding is required to access the walls to pour the concrete. Scaffolding also helps support the walls.
Additional reinforcement is required around the garage door opening.
A reader interested in making concrete countertops inquires about their good and bad points.
How to make your OWN insulated window coverings.
Concrete block columns aren't typically used in straw bale buildings, but here's how you can make it work.
It takes a lot of energy to produce concrete, so when possible, it's good to look for substitute building materials. Here are a couple of options that might be good choices for a garage.
Putting fly ash rather than portland cement into concrete does have a few environmental benefits.
How I have gone full circle from coal heat, heat pump to wood heat.
Cam enjoys a sense of accomplishment many times a day as he uses his sidewalk!
How to make insulated shades at home.
The earthbag/geotextile basement wall system described here has excellent potential to save on initial construction costs and long-term energy costs. No concrete is used. The same principles have been used to build retaining walls for decades.
Though it reuses a waste material, fly ash concrete contains traces of mercury and other chemicals from coal-burning power plants. Do you want that in your home?
Michael Morley's SIPs home project is underway. On Tuesday, March 2, the excavator dug trench footings in at the site.
Michael Morley's SIPs home project is underway, and despite an unexpected snowstorm, progress has been made on the concrete slab and the risers.
Try these approaches for a stylish, eco-friendly tub and shower.
Settling on a flooring option for the tipi was pretty simple after coming across an awesome company that was right under my nose the whole time.
Michael Morley will post regular updates about his progress building a unique green home with structural insulated panels (SIPs). Here, he discusses options for installing a colored concrete floor, and considering whether to install a solar hot water system.
Earlier this month I visited Greensburg, Kan., and toured a few of its many green buildings. Here's what I found.
This part of the series deals with window size and location, ceiling heights, eave length, and other design and passive design choices you can make for your new home. These choices apply whether you are on or off the grid.
The basement of Dan Chiras' net zero energy home is outfitted with PVC pipes, insulation and concrete.
Concrete rubble from collapsed buildings is a huge problem in Haiti. It is blocking roads and hindering reconstruction. Instead of spending millions of dollars trucking the rubble away and disposing of it, why not use it to build affordable housing?