InVision Zero SC: Greenville's First Mainstream Zero Energy Home
Watch Our Trailside Model's Solar Photovoltaic System in Action
Can a Zero Energy Home really produce as much electricity as it consumes? It’s not only possible – it’s practical!
Addison Homes is committed to making Zero Energy a mainstream option. We’re modeling a vision of sustainable construction that’s attractive, affordable and attainable for homeowners right here in the Upstate.
Our Trailside model is Greenville’s first mainstream Zero Energy Home. In addition to maximized efficiency – achieved via the US Department of Energy’s Zero Energy Ready Home building standard – this project incorporates Dow Powerhouse Solar Shingles as a renewable energy system designed to offset all or most of the home’s annual electrical usage.
Dow Solar Shingles are a dual-functional roofing material that protects the home from the elements like any other roof AND produces solar electricity. The sun’s power is captured by photovoltaic panels and fed into an inverter; the inverter converts DC energy into AC and distributes it into the home. If the solar energy created exceeds the amount consumed, the difference is sold back to the grid.
Watch the Trailside model home’s solar photovoltaic system in action by logging onto our monitoring website (log-in details in blue box). You can see what the rooftop array is generating at any given time; the site also provides details such as how much power the system has generated to date – in kilowatts as well as dollars – along with environmental benefits such as trees saved and oil offset.
A Zero on the HERS Index, A Perfect Ten with Homeowners
Many consumers wonder if a conventionally-styled Zero Energy Home can really produce as much electricity as it consumes. Addison Homes built this project to prove it’s not only possible, it’s practical. How? By incorporating a variety of high-performance products and processes to maximize efficiency – to some 70% beyond code – then adding a photovoltaic system capable of generating enough renewable energy to meet the home’s remaining electrical needs.
The result is a number of “firsts:” it’s the first mainstream Zero Energy Home in Greenville, and it’s located in the first community in the United States where every house will meet the rigorous energy savings, comfort, health and durability requirements of the Department of Energy’s Zero Energy Ready Home program. It’s also the first home in the Southeast to achieve Active House certification – a European designation of optimal daylighting, indoor air quality and resource efficiency. Other labels include Energy Star®, Indoor airPLUS® and WaterSense®.
This home’s exterior is simple and quaint, clad in GreenSENSE™-labeled siding that’s durable and virtually maintenance-free. Interior design is a study in neutrals — created with low-VOC paint on all walls and trim, GREENGUARD-certified hardwood flooring to ensure low VOC polyurethane, and carpeting created from recyclable nylon. Elements of universal design are built in throughout, including wide doorways, zero step garage entryway, and focused accessibility in the owner’s bath.
Addison Homes included the finishes most requested by today’s homebuyers: granite counters, classic craftsman crown molding, stylish lighting (with LEDs, of course) and energy-efficient stainless steel appliances.
But underneath this home’s charming élan, it’s all about high performance.
Construction efficiency was a priority. Advanced framing techniques were incorporated to conserve lumber and maximize insulation; using engineered lumber and trusses reduced jobsite debris. Recycled-content materials were utilized where possible.
A variety of next-generation insulation and sealants wrapped the home in a blanket of efficiency. Addison insulated walls and ceilings beyond code and spray foamed the roof to create conditioned space for the ultra-efficient HVAC system. All ductwork was installed and sealed per Energy Star and Zero Energy Ready Home requirements to provide a huge performance advantage.
Low-E windows utilizing double pane glass with two layers of low-e coating further augment efficiency. All plumbing fixtures meet EPA WaterSense® requirements for low flow/water conservation and an Energy Star®-qualified tankless water heater features a built-in re-circulation system.
To ensure indoor air quality, the construction process included a complete air sealing package and airtight drywall installation techniques. There’s fresh air intake on return with an air cycler control; all fresh air passes through a central MERV 16 carbon media filter.
To promote the healthiest indoor environment, Addison utilized low-VOC paints, finishes and construction products. Pest control was non-toxic as well. The home’s open ambiance and healthy atmosphere is enhanced via ample daylighting and natural ventilation through an abundance of skylights, sun tunnels and roof windows.
Addison Homes’ goal for this project is a home that scores Zero on the HERS Index and rates a Perfect Ten with today’s homeowners.