what is a passive house

Passive House Design

A a Passive House is a building that is constructed to such a standard that there should be little or no need for artificial heating throughout its lifespan. Therefore, it must be:

  • Insulated to the highest standards possible with virtual no thermal bridging throughout.
  • It must be airtight when all door are shut.
  • Ventilation should be by mechanical means such as Heat Recovery Ventilation.
  • Most windows should ideally be south-facing with little or no windows facing north.
  • Only glazing units with the highest thermal performances should be considered.
  • Fitted with solar panels on the roof.
  • Fitting solar panels for generating electricity using photo-voltaic cell technology would be an added bonus.

It would be very difficult to retrofit your existing home to Passive House Standard. However, you could achieve standards very close to a Passive if you follow the steps above. Trying to eliminate thermal bridging in older homes can be extremely difficult to achieve, an essential requirement for Passive House quality.