Five Common Green Building Mistakes

Construction-mistake

Depending on the method of construction, green building consultant Mark LaLiberte tells us there are a few common green building mistakes to watch out for — errors he's seeing more and more as builders move forward with greener practices.  Read through this list and then tell us what you think … are you seeing any other common mistakes with green construction?

  1. Wasted Resources – use scraps where possible, save materials for other projects, or donate extras to reuse centers
  2. Poorly Selected and Installed Insulation – use blown-in or spray foam insulation products to improve energy performance and minimize air leakage (and coordinate with ventilation system)
  3. Improper Flashing and Drainage Planes for Water Management – update your know-how on flashing and drainage planes to control water and moisture
  4. Tight Homes Built Without Intentional Ventilation – install whole house ventilation systems in all homes to provide fresh, clean air in tight homes
  5. HVAC Ducts Installed in Unconditioned Space – layout and install all ductwork to run in conditioned space to improve efficiency and reduce wasted energy

For more detailed explanations of these mistakes, feel free to freshen up on how to avoid the five most common errors builders make when it comes to energy, health, and resource efficiency.  Read the full article, "Countdown to Quality" by Mark LaLiberte in EcoHome.

Photo credit: thievingjoker.


  • http://www.ecozebra.com Andrew S.

    Double panes and Low-e does not necessarily make a green window, but they often get passed off as such on bungalow renovations.

  • http://greengateranchremodel.blogspot.com/ TTF

    My daylight ranch (passive solar) built in the 1970′s has a centrally located heat pump exchanger with a main duct running out in each direction. From this, it feeds conditioned air through smaller ducts to the upper and lower floors. Its an extremely simple design – least amount of duct-run (less materails, less heat loss) and any leaked air goes right into the house.

    So why did this “good sense” methodology go away? I think the main reason is that it’s unsightly. You have this long box hanging from your ceiling. We chose to build walls under some of it to give the feeling of large passage ways instead of a soffit. In our kids bedrooms, we extended the soffit around the room to make a tray ceiling. In our remodeling blog, I posted some pictures of what we did (http://greengateranchremodel.blogspot.com/)

    TTF

  • http://mportlandrealestate.com Tyler Portland Real Estate

    Good post, and a very good point. I have never understood why someone would rip down a house, and throw out all of the materials to build a “green” house on top. A truly “green” house would try to incorporate all of the good reusable materials into the new home where possible.

  • http://www.sprayfoam.biz/ Dave

    HVAC Ducts Installed in Unconditioned Space – layout and install all ductwork to run in conditioned space to improve efficiency and reduce wasted energy

  • http://geothermalinstallations.info/ Charles

    Another mistake is not installaing energy saving systems, like geothermal heating and cooling systems. They improve the insullation and use green materials but still burn fossil fuels to heat and cool the place.

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