Eco-Solar Home Tour & Bike Tour

Eco-Solar Home Tour & Bike Tour

On Saturday May 31st and Sunday June 1st Edmonton held its 15th annual Eco-Solar Home tour. The purpose of the tour is to give residential homes the opportunity to show off the environmental technologies to the interested public.

I took part in helping show off the Westmount home on May 31st – showcasing the increased insulation values from typical residential construction, solar panels, geothermal heating and cooling, on-demand hot water, and heat recovery ventilation.

The basement had approximately 30 R using insulated concrete forms (ICF) and 35 R wall construction for the main and second floors. The reduction of heat loss and gain through insulation means less energy is used to correct these fluctuations.

The roof had 8 photovoltaic (PV) cells – solar panels – on the roof that generated energy through the seasons. During the summer the unused energy goes back into the grid and cost savings are realized.

The basement used geothermal in floor heating and the main and second floor had forced air that was heated and cooled by the geothermal system. Many people don’t realize that the geothermal system can be used as a cooling system in the summer. No separate air conditioning is required.

This home also had a hot water on demand system so that excess energy is not wasted to heat up large quantities of water and a heat recovery ventilation system to collect the heat out of air leaving the home to preheat the air coming in.

This home was quite well designed and incorporated many technologies that would make any owner proud.

On Sunday June 1st I helped organize the Canadian Green Building Council’s (CaGBC) Emerging Green Builders (EGB) Bike Tour to coincide with the Eco-Solar Home Tour. We had a nice turn out of a dozen bikers for this event. Unfortunately our guide was unable to make the trip due to her bike tire having a flat. Madeleine Drake, a fellow EGB, and I were able to take two groups on the tour to show off the homes in the Belgravia and McKernan area as they were closely located.

The first tour group and I got separated along the trip so I hope they were able to locate many of the homes on the tour. I was able to catch up with Madeleine’s group and we finished the tour together. The rain held off just long enough for us to get to the fifth home. I believe the group had a nice time and enjoyed a leisurely ride.

For those who would like more information on the Eco-Solar Home tour they can checkout the website: ecosolar.ca

It was a fantastic weekend and I’m glad I could be apart of such a wonderful event.
Trish Bolen