We interviewed the owners of Central California’s first certified Passive House that we completed in November 2012. The dramatic energy and water savings they experienced were givens. It was the bonus benefits that made us smile. For starters, all year round every room is kept at a consistent temperature—no dips or spikes to get in the way of comfort. Evidence that the filtered air is pristine shows up in interesting ways. At the four-year mark, they haven’t had to dust once…not a single time. There are no bugs on windows sills or in corners, no spider webs, no ants, none. Both occupants use allergy meds when they’re away from the home, but when they’re in their certified Passive House they retire the sprays and tablets after just a few hours. While the outside of the windows are washed periodically, the inside of the panes were washed only once. And according to the window washer, that wasn’t necessary.
And it’s quiet. There’s no whoosh of air from an HVAC system, noisy pipes or other sounds that seem to be present in the average house. Quiet is a secondary benefit of the excellent insulation in walls, ceiling and floors.