Last weekend my husband and I took an open house tour of zHome, a new green town home community in the Issaquah Highlands. zHome is the first carbon-neutral and zero energy multi-family complex in the US. The place was buzzing with activity. There were about 100 people on various tours. These are not your typical open house tours. The tours are quite informative.
The zHome team developers not only describe the energy saving features of the buildings, they talked about products that will help you go green, save energy and save money in your own home. You’ll leave there with a crash course in “green living” and more knowledgeable about how you can save some money in your own home.
The goal of zHome community:
zHome is a revolutionary, 10-unit town home development that uses smart design and cutting edge technologies to radically reduce its environmental impacts. zHome will prove that homes that use zero net energy and 60% less water, emit net zero carbon emissions, have clean indoor air and use only low-toxicity materials are possible and scalable to mainstream home production.
Below are some of the materials and features used in the community:
Besides the great materials and features above, I learned about materials and tools that any homeowner could use to go green and/or save money.Are you concerned with water leaks? Check out the Orion Water Meter. This handy little tool is a water leak detection device. Although the link is to a website from a particular utility district, there is information about the water meter.Would you like to save on your energy bill? (Who wouldn’t?) The “TED,” the The Energy Detective measures your energy usage, detects phantom loads, and where energy is wasted.
Solar panels in gray WA State? Apparently even when it’s cloudy, solar panels pick up some sun, something I did not know. I assume the gray days would make solar panels useless in our climate. I also did not know that the rain cleans the panels off on a regular basis, making them far more efficient than in some of the sunny, desert climates.
zHome tours are scheduled for the next two weekends. Happy touring!