What are passive houses ?

Current trends in construction emphasize the practicality of the building and the low cost of erecting and operating it. A very important aspect in this regard is energy efficiency. All these assumptions are ideally met by passive houses.

Today we are concerned with using as little energy as possible, including when using our home or office. The goal is, of course, to get the lowest possible bills, but also to take care of the environment, to fight against the progressive unfavorable climate change. In the field of construction, passive houses are the modern answer to this need.


Passive houses

Passive house is nothing but a very modern standard of construction, which is distinguished by extremely good insulation parameters of the envelope, as well as the use of numerous solutions aimed at minimizing energy consumption during the use of the building. A passive house consumes eight times less energy than a house erected in a traditional, standard way - less than 15 kWh/m2/year, while in a typical building it is about 120 kWh/m2/year. Such a result is possible because a passive house is constructed in such a way that its users can make maximum use of natural energy sources: the sun, the heat of the ground, and even... the temperature of their own bodies. The design of a passive house is therefore as close to nature as possible, that is, to meet several requirements, which, in addition to the above-mentioned energy consumption parameter, include:


- Glazed area U ≤ 0.8 kWh/m2/year;

- Radiation transmittance coefficient g > 0.50;

- Minimizing or eliminating thermal bridges;

- The tightness of the building - n 50 ≤ 0.6 h -1;

- High recuperation efficiency n > 75 percent.


What are passive houses made of?

Another important feature of a passive house is that its construction itself must be as environmentally and human health friendly as possible. Therefore, this type of building is constructed mainly from materials that have no negative impact on either nature or the human body. The most common are wood, cellular concrete, traditional and expanded ceramics, prefabricated products, expanded concrete or silicate.

The requirements of a passive building can be met by a modular house. It is erected from separate segments (that is, modules) made from prefabricated components, which are created in a factory and assembled together on the construction site. Such a building can be erected very quickly, even in a few weeks, and is much cheaper both to build and to use than a traditional one.


What should be the thickness of passive house wall insulation?

The amount of energy consumed during the operation of any building depends largely on the insulation of the walls. The thicker and tighter it is, the more energy-efficient the building object. In the case of a passive house, the insulation layer (such as mineral wool) can be as thick as 40 cm. The accuracy and tightness of the insulation is also very important.


How much energy does a passive house use?

To passive is a type of building object that absorbs the least energy. In its case, it is less than less than 15 kWh/m2/year. This is because it does not require additional heat sources. In comparison, we are dealing with an energy-efficient house when energy consumption is a maximum of 70 kWh/m2/year.


What are the costs of building passive houses?

As in the case of buildings erected in the traditional way, how much you have to spend on the construction of passive houses depends on the materials and technology used. Those who care about the lowest possible investment costs should be interested in modular houses, the construction price of which starts at 3900 PLN net per m2 (3000 PLN net per m2 for a modular office). This solution is not only cheap, but also very practical. Modular houses can be turnkey in just a few weeks from the start of construction. They are also mobile - as they have no foundations, they can be disassembled into individual modules and moved to another location if necessary, and can be erected on a plot of land with a difficult area. 


Types of passive house designs

Passive house designs are very diverse, depending on the needs and expectations of the investor. They can be modular houses without a permit, that is, with a building area of up to 35 m2. In order to erect them, a notification is sufficient, while the investment itself must comply with the local zoning plan. Such buildings are able to function as seasonal or year-round. Of course, a residential house with a construction area of more than 35 m2 (that is, requiring a building permit) can also be modular and passive at the same time. Another interesting design is offices. In their case, passive construction is a great idea, as its application naturally translates into a huge reduction in utility costs - that is, an increase in the profits flowing from it - and also, due to its pro-environmentalism, has a very positive impact on the company's image.


For whom will a passive house be suitable?

Passive house will be a great solution for anyone who values, above all, low operating costs, resulting, of course, from very low energy consumption. This type of construction should also interest all those for whom the environment and climate are important. A passive house not only consumes little energy - making its use a form of fighting climate catastrophe - but also has to be built from nature-friendly materials, such as prefabricated components. At the same time, such materials are very aesthetically pleasing and beneficial to our health, so this type of building is suitable for anyone who simply cares about themselves.