Before laying the first brick , bioclimatic architecture has to have a difficult puzzle built . The challenge is to put together a puzzle trying to get closer to that zero impact self-sufficiency, in which countless pieces fit in one way or another, but achieving a harmonious whole, from the same choice of terrain to the orientation, the materials used or, for example, obtaining clean energy.
Goals of designing a bioclimatic house
The objective is to achieve eco-friendly comfort, that habitability that generates well-being, always minimizing the carbon footprint and all kinds of environmental impact, so that nothing has to envy lifestyles based on energy waste. Not surprisingly, when designing a house, energy efficiency is a key aspect, although bioclimatic architecture is much more than that.
In addition to seeking the ideal combination of green and conventional energy sources to save energy and also water resources, bioclimatic houses are intelligent design to gain efficiency, creativity, be isolated in its proper measure and seek comfort throughout the year.
10 Keys to designing a bioclimatic house
Below we propose 10 keys for the design of a bioclimatic home, which should be fulfilled as far as possible:
- The orientation: The objective is to make the most of the sun in winter and reduce its negative impact in winter, although the benefits will depend on the type of climate. For this purpose, both the facade and as many windows as possible will be oriented to the south (south-southwest and south-southeast), taking into account that the west orientation is the most inadvisable.
- Materials : In addition to choosing ecological materials (with low environmental impact and non-toxic) by their very nature, because they are recycled or have a low carbon footprint thanks to their proximity, avoiding emissions from transport, the bioclimatic house is also a passive home . This means that constructive elements such as windows, greenhouses, walls, mobile enclosures or roofs are used to create passive solar systems and, in general, in order to achieve energy savings and environmental comfort. 10 keys to designing a bioclimatic house
- Shape : Like all its architecture, the bioclimatic house must have the shape that adapts to the natural environment and, in short, that is convenient to maximize that energy efficiency and self-sufficiency to which it is necessary to tend. Typically, they have a compact and regular shape to better conserve energy, since the shape of a house largely determines energy consumption. Among other elements, the height is decisive to achieve greater ventilation, and the shape of the roof or the design for solar collection are also important.
- Clean energies: Solar energy allows the house to be heated directly (passive systems) or through solar panels or tiles, although the ideal combination is usually sought depending on each case, so the options are many, such as wind energy or geothermal, let’s say. 10 keys to designing a bioclimatic house
- Insulation : Strategic use of thermal mass to avoid sudden changes in temperature, which can be obtained with the strategic placement of the walls, and in the same way, thermal insulation also makes it difficult. Still, ventilation is important. Double glazing and mobile enclosures are recommended, which can be from curtains to blinds or shutters.
- Ventilation : Not only for health reasons, but to improve the conservation of temperatures in winter and summer. A strategic ventilation combining its three types, natural, convective and convective in the attic, is key to air conditioning the home and, in turn, to preserve pleasant temperatures inside the house, avoiding or minimizing losses. 10 keys to designing a bioclimatic house
- Windows : In hot regions, it is advisable to multiply the number of advantages to achieve natural light and ventilation, but at the same time these must include protections. The exteriors will be more effective than the interiors to avoid the passage of heat and, in general, the facade has to play with different elements, such as balconies, size of the windows, number, location and inclination, for example, in addition to complementing them with the proximity of permanent or deciduous trees or with green walls and roofs, as appropriate.
- Garden : Whether vertical gardens, green roofs or ornamental plants, organic garden and / or trees, your choice and design must fit with the general concept of the home. A good design could prioritize species based on their adaptability to the environment (native plants are usually easier to care for and it would be interesting to plant endangered species), their need for irrigation, durability and the creation of a small ecosystem that attracts biodiversity. The arrangement of the elements and the proximity of the façade is also essential, both for better and for worse. 10 keys to designing a bioclimatic house
- Water : Saving water has to do with needs and good practices, no doubt, but at the same time it is essential to resort to water storage systems, such as the water barrels that are installed in the garden, and that collect the water from downspouts or flexible reservoirs that store water.
- Habitability : Since houses are to be lived in, and a bioclimatic house requires an attitude that is committed to the environment in order to truly be, design has to help to do so. Knowing the customs and way of life of its future inhabitants can make a big difference in this regard, although a good attitude will always be necessary. Otherwise, the architectural work will have largely been in vain.
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