DOE Tour of Zero: Montlake Modern by TC Legend Homes
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This certified U.S. DOE Zero Energy Ready Home by TC Legend Homes is tucked into an existing neighborhood in the Montlake area of Seattle.
This ultra-efficient, modern motif home has a solar electric system large enough to produce enough electricity to power the home and an electric car.
Fiber cement siding panels made of recycled content were used to provide a durable modern exterior finish.
An ultra-efficient air-to-water heat pump with a COP of 4.5 is used to heat water for radiant floor heating and to preheat the domestic hot water.
With the solar electric system, the home is expected to cost only $21 a year to heat and cool.
The builder estimates that the energy-efficiency upgrades added about $20,000 to the cost of construction, not counting the solar electric system. With federal and state solar incentives and the zero power bills, the upgrades should result in a lower cost of ownership on a 30-year mortgage the day the homeowner moves in.
The home is equipped with a high-capture filtered fresh-air intake for passive makeup air; the air intake has a fan that is electronically controlled to operate when the powerful range hood fan is turned on to ensure balanced fresh air.
The home is equipped with advanced solid-state lighting technology — 100% of the home’s fixtures use LEDs.
High-efficiency appliances, including an ENERGY STAR-rated refrigerator, dishwasher, and clothes washer, add to energy and water savings.
The TC Legend home employs natural comfort balancing with exposed concrete slab floors that absorb heat from sunlight during the day and radiate it back into the room at night.
Water-saving fixtures reduce water and water-heating bills.
Ultra-efficient triple-pane windows with insulated frames and heat-reflecting coatings bring light into the home.
Certified low- and no-VOC finishes contribute to a healthful indoor environment.
Conventional wood framing is used for interior framing inside the structural insulated panel (SIP) enclosure.
Structural insulated panel (SIP) construction, used for the walls and roof, provides a continuous thermal blanket around the home. This advanced technology framing system consists of two wooden panels sandwiching a layer of rigid foam insulation.
The homeowners will enjoy lake views from the third-story roof deck of their DOE Zero Energy Ready-certified home in Seattle.
Advanced-technology SIPs come to the site as pre-cut structural insulated panels ready for quick assembly. Every seam between the solid panels is caulked and taped to provide comprehensive draft protection.
"I will be getting money back each month rather than having to pay."
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“My energy bills will be negative – I will be getting money back each month rather than having to pay, which is the biggest benefit. My old house used to have some rooms that were too hot if you turned the heat on all the way, while other rooms were too cold. It is great to have a place where I just don't even notice the temperature – it is always just comfortable. It is also great peace of mind to know that the air quality is good, and I don't have to worry about children’s health.”
– Homeowner Yoojin