Proud Green Home spotlights manufacturer's support of deep green building
Story and photos by Steve Arel.
Exterior Photo Credit: James Moses, Bisig Impact Group, © 2013
The Proud Green Home isn’t just a model for deep green home building. It also epitomizes the power of collaboration.
A host of manufacturers were involved throughout the project, contributing products at low or no cost to help make the Proud Green Home one of America’s highest-performing structures.
Many of the companies contributing to the effort were spotlighted in a collection of brochures, displays and demonstrations to show visitors how their products played a role in building efficiency. Among them:
Technology giant LG has a strong presence throughout the Proud Green Home. In fact, the company’s environmental expertise literally sits at the pinnacle of the home.
Some 40 solar panels cover the roof, absorbing the sun’s rays and converting it into energy for the home. It’s that energy that in large part fuels the Proud Green Home, harnessing natural light and driving down overall energy expenses for the homeowner.
But it’s not just the solar panels that comprise LG’s presence. The home is outfitted with its newest high-capacity, high-efficient refrigerator, a dishwasher and washing machine that uses steam to clean and consumes a third less water than conventional machines, and low-use flat-panel TVs. A ducted mini-split HVAC system supplies energy-efficient heating and cooling as well.
“I’m so proud we can help consumers save time and money,” said John Taylor, vice president of LG Electronics. “I’m convinced we’re helping to save the planet.”
|Jason Dagle, left, and Tim McKimmy of Wood-Mode Inc. show the company's cabinets that have been installed in the Proud Green Home.|
The Proud Green Home represents an opportunity for Wood-Mode to showcase its environmentally produced cabinetry in the symbol of residential high performance and sustainability.
Jason Dagle, Wood-Mode’s safety and environmental manager, said being part of the Proud Green Home project allows the company to broaden the scope and reach of its product as part of the deep green construction movement.
The company has long prided itself on environmental stewardship, having installed efficient equipment in its Pennsylvania plant to virtually eliminate harmful emissions produced during the finishing process from seeping into the environment. Wood-Mode also recovers and re-circulates steam back into its boiler systems and grounds sawdust and wood scrap into particles to be used as fuel for the factory and offices.
“This project reinforces a lot of what we’ve done over the years in this effort,” Dagle said.
|Tara Murray, marketing manager for Benjamin Obdyke, stands next to a display of the moisture reduction system used in the Proud Green Home.|
One of the key components of the Proud Green Home’s exterior walls is the Home Slicker system developed by Benjamin Obdyke. Nailed to the surface under the brick and metal siding is a nylon material shaped into vertical, three-dimensional channels that creates a half-inch barrier between the sheeting and siding.
The material allows water to easily drain, and the space works to promote air flow and prevent moisture from collecting and potentially penetrating the home. The latter reduces the risk of mold and rot, allowing the wall to dry evenly.
Home Slicker gives builders assurance that moisture won’t be forced into various home penetration points, said Tara Murray, marketing manager for Benjamin Obdyke.
“To be a key component of this home gives us justification and credibility,” she said. “It resonates with builders and contractors.”
Patrick Lanning, left, and Christian Nolte of Metal Sales helped showcase the metal siding and roofing used to construct the Proud Green Home.
Metal provides an intriguing contrast to the façade of the Proud Green Home, its dark bronze color butting against dozens of dark bricks. The metal comes from Kentucky-based Metal Sales and is growing in its use within residential construction as a contributor to home functionality and durability.
The metal is warranted for 45 years, but studies have shown it can last between 60 and 70 years, said Christian Nolte, vice president of marketing and sales for Metal Sales.
The metal siding of the Proud Green Home is coated with paint consisting of ceramic pigments. Though the metal is a dark bronze hue one assumes absorbs heat and would send temperatures rising inside the home, the opposite actually occurs.
The ceramic pigment is part of a cooling system that reflects the suns rays. Paint containing the pigments can keep the roof, for instance 20 to 30 degrees cooler than if a traditional paint had been used.
All of the metal laid along the roof and sides of the home was coated with baked-on paint before the panels were installed. The finish is so durable, it comes with a 45-year warranty against peeling or fading.
The hope, Nolte said, is that interest and publicity about the Proud Green Home will entice more consumers to realize the varied aesthetic and performance benefits of metal sheeting as siding or roofing.
“This home represents the future of residential construction,” he said. “This home provides a blueprint.”
|Crysta Thomas of Boral Bricks stands in front of her company's product that makes up the facade of the Proud Green Home.|
Dark brown bricks with a hint of black give the Proud Green Home’s façade and interior stairwell a strong traditional look. The bricks supplied by Boral Brick not only provide a bold appearance, but they also perform in conjunction with the home to provide efficiency, moisture management and durability.
“It’s always nice to have your product linked to the sustainable message,” said Crysta Thomas, brand manager for Boral’s brick division.
Having its product featured in the project helps illustrate bricks’ versatility.
“People think of it as traditional,” Thomas said. “We were thrilled to see it used in a contemporary design.”
|Gary Kadlec's KleenWrap solution helped protect the floor of the Proud Green Home throughout the construction process.|
Gary Kadlec’s KleenWrap is no longer physically part of the home, but its lasting impact can be seen in the smooth, polished concrete floors. KleenWrap is plastic sheeting measuring just a few millimeters thick that was laid over the flooring during construction to protect the surface from the typical debris generated by the building process.
KleenWrap, on the market only four years, protected the ground-floor slab from becoming a collection plate for wood scraps, dollops of drywall and dust and spilled paint. Kadlec, whose invention is recyclable, says perhaps the biggest hurdle to getting builders to more frequently protect floors with products such as KleenWrap are builders themselves.
“No one’s ever tried to do this,” he said.
Kadlec hopes exposure with the Proud Green Home will win his product favor within the industry and get consumers thinking about KleenWrap’s benefits: preventing early damage to floors, saving on construction cleanup costs and promoting air quality by shielding homebuyers from post-construction dust and other tiny particles.
“People ask why everyone doesn’t use this,” Kadlec said. “Builders either don’t know about it or don’t care. I believe there is a need and an opportunity.”
Read more about the Proud Green Home at Serenbe.