Visitors from Holland College

This morning we were so pleased to welcome students from Holland College to the house for a tour.  There were about 17 students who are enrolled in the Energy Systems Engineering Technology program along with several of the instructors.  (Correct me if I got the title of the program wrong any HC followers!)  I did my best at giving an overview of some of the key features of a Passive House and what we have been doing specifically in our project but there is so much to share that I’m sure I forgot some things!  The students had some fantastic questions and appeared very interested in what we were doing.  I wish I had taken more pictures but I was so involved in conversations that I didn’t get that many.  So, here is one of the two that I actually got.  The other won’t upload, grr!

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An enthusiastic young man. OK, it was a staged photo but he actually was quite impressed with the window!

So, what has been going on since the last post and this one you might be thinking?  Well, I’ll tell you 🙂

The wall insulation has been completed, the OSB is up on all the walls and on the ceiling on the second floor, and some of the taping (a major air sealing component) and been done.  We will soon be complete sealed and ready for a blower door test which will be done by some of the students that visited us today!

The rafters also have spray foam around them where they meet the plywood on the roof and soffit vents are installed so that wind doesn’t get into the attic and blow around all the loose cellulose.  (Sorry, no pics of this… I just wasn’t a good picture taker today!)

Here’s a few pics of the OSB going up and the taping.

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Completed dense packed cellulose on the second floor.

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Seams all taped on the first floor.

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More taping complete.

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4 Responses to Visitors from Holland College

  1. Win at Naugler House says:

    Looks great! You are coming along nicely. I enjoy following your posts.

  2. Hey Beth,

    Fantastic Tour, the class really appreciated it.

    I’ve been thinking more about the “Poor Man’s Geothermal Loop”. The idea is to have turbulent flow to increase the heat exchange transfer between the pipe and ground but you do not want it to be too turbulent such that pumping power is too high. I’m thinking you will also want some controls such that the energy obtained from the ground is required (i.e. don’t want it on if it is 10 deg C out because it would be cooling the air vice heating). I am also thinking pump energy, ok in the winter because additional energy will heat the home but should be considered in the summer (balance between pump power and energy rejected to the ground).

    All this being said, to size the pump appropriately the pressure losses need to be considered for the pipe (which I wrote down while there) but we will also need to figure pressure losses associated with the heat exchange coil and any fittings placed in the system. If you know the fittings and heat exchanger you plan on using than please send to me and I can run the numbers.

    Thanks again for the tour and for this blog, it’s always nice to have something to reflect on and educate the public.

    Blair Arsenault
    Learning Manager
    Holland College
    Energy Systems Engineering Technology

    PS. The man in the Pic is Nic Cahill, and yes, he was very excited during and after the tour.

    • rbpeters04 says:

      Hi Blair,
      We had already considered the issue of having to control the temperatures at which the geothermal loop would be operating. We are planning on having a control although I’m not sure what it is, Ralph would be able to discuss that much better than I would. The HRV we are going with is a Zehnder ComfoAir 350. The manual can be found at this website: I would think the info you would need could be found there.
      I had a question for you when you were at the house but I totally forgot when you were there! I’m wondering if you would have any suggestions for energy monitoring systems for us?
      We are so glad that you all came out to see the house! If at anytime you would like to come out again or even have any thoughts for us we would love that!

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