Blog

Aug
10
DOE Tour of Zero: Selah Vista by Leading Force Contracting Services / Selah Vista Homes

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Leading Force Contracting Services and Selah Vista Homes built this 1,701-square-foot custom home in Selah, Washington, to the high performance criteria of the U.S. Department of Energy Zero Energy Ready Home (ZERH) program.


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The home’s snap-lock metal roofing helps reflect heat away from the unvented attic. Reclaimed metal roofing and reclaimed wood add a rustic touch to the walls, windows, and doors. The remaining siding is natural hydraulic lime, which produces a finish similar to cement.



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With 7 kW of photovoltaic solar panels on the roof, the high-performance home scores a -12 on the HERS Index, with anticipated $0 annual utility bills and enough surplus power to operate one or two electric cars. Even without PV, the home would score a very efficient 36 on the HERS Index.



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Deep overhangs and porches shade windows and walls from the intense summer sun of eastern Washington.


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ENERGY STAR appliances, LED lighting, and water-saving plumbing fixtures add to energy and water savings in the efficient home.



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The home is heated and cooled by three very energy-efficient ductless minisplit heat pumps that are strategically located in the front bedroom, the master bedroom, and the living/dining area.



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The builder installed a heat pump water heater in a central location less than 20 feet from all faucets. Together with low-flow fixtures and a xeriscaped yard, these measures are expected to reduce water usage to less than 30% of the usage of typical homes in the region.



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The concrete slab is surrounded by an ICF foundation wall and sits on a 5-inch-thick layer of reclaimed foil-faced EPS foam that was air-sealed with a durable tape to form an air, moisture, radon, and thermal barrier beneath the slab.



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The home’s exterior walls consist of two 2-by-4, 24-inch on-center framed walls set next to each other to form an 11-inch wall cavity that is sheathed with 1/2-inch plywood.



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The home is wrapped with a smart vapor-open house membrane that is taped with a sturdy air-sealing tape. The membrane stops drafts and liquid water but allows vapor through.



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The home’s heat pump water heater and energy recovery ventilator are located in the laundry room.



“Everyone deserves to live in a healthy home.”


– Steve Weise, Leading Force Contracting Services



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“Everyone deserves to live in a healthy home. … By building very tight wall assemblies, we not only save energy but create a very healthy atmosphere. We [also] know that we can save people money and quantify it with the HERS score.”


– Steve Weise, Leading Force Contracting Services



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