A new Vermont home built on Passive House standards could be heated with just a hair dryer, reports JLC's Sean Gyllenborg.

The ultra airtight home constructed with superior insulation, moisture resistance, and 12-inch-thick foundation will keep its residents comfortable even during Northeastern winters for pennies a day. In this story, Gyllenborg details the products and materials that went into the high-performance dwelling.

Passive House design often pairs 2x4 structural bearing walls with vertically applied wood I-joists for maximum cavity insulation. For this project, we wanted the wood I-joists to serve both our structural and insulation needs. And so, with our structural engineer’s blessing, we framed our high-performance “bearing” walls with 16-inch-deep wood I-joists—to our knowledge, this is the second home in the U.S. to so. Prior tilting up the walls, we folded the membrane into place.

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