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How Green Homes Get Cleaner Indoor Air | Green Home Builder Tips

Posted by Penny Hull on Wed, Nov 17, 2010 @ 06:11 AM

Indoor Air Quality - Green Home Builder Tips

Cleaner Indoor Air is Part of a Green Home

Why should a certified green home address indoor air quality?  Indoor air quality is very important.

On average, people in our nation spend about 90% of their time indoors, with the majority of that time spent in the home. 

In addition, the EPA estimates that almost 20 million people in America suffer from asthma, and require better indoor air quality to help ease their symptoms.

Here's how building a green home can help.

There are six different "systems" that a green home builder must incorporate in a Raleigh new green home.  The green home builder must address Lot Design, Resources, Energy, Water, Indoor Environmental Quality, and Operation/Maintanence in order for a Raleigh green home to be certified.

Today we'll discuss some of the ways a green home can address indoor air quality.

Green Building - Indoor Air Quality

There are four different "levels" of green home certification.  For each level, the green home builder must incorporate an increasing number of indoor air quality factors. 

The features included in the green home will vary based on the floor plan, desires of the homebuyer, and budget.

Indoor Air Quality Common Features:

NC Green Home Builders | Raleigh Green HomesNot all of these features will be found in every Raleigh green home.   Your green home builder will work with you to select the indoor air quality features that work best for you.

- Natural Gas Fireplace with permanently fixed glass doors.

- Wood burning fireplace equipped with gasket doors and able to be operated while doors are closed.

- Door between garage and living space tightly sealed and gasketed.

- Detached garage or carport selected instead of attached garage.

- Wood products chosen with no added urea-formaldehyde.

- "Green Label" carpeting installed.

- Low or no VOC paints selected

- Low or no VOC floor finishes selected.

- Cabinets constructed to KCMA standards.

- Insulation chosen with low formaldehyde emissions.

- Carbon monoxide alarms installed.

- Kitchen exhaust fans are vented to outdoors.

- Bathroom exhaust fans installed with an automatic timer.

- HVAC supply registers covered/vacuumed before occupancy.

- Crawlspace is sealed/conditioned.

A Bronze Level green certified home (NGBS) must earn at least 36 points in the indoor air quality category, and a Silver Level green certified home must earn at least 65 points in the indoor air quality category.  Points will vary.

For example, one of our most recent certified green home projects under way has earned 70 points in the indoor air quality category, through application of a variety of different air quality control measures.

Raleigh Green Homes Offer Cleaner Indoor Air

Why should you consider a green home in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area?

   - Lower energy bills.
   - Less carbon footprint.
   - Healthier indoor air.
   - Reduced warranty claims.
   - Improved durability and lower maintenance.
   - Better resale value.

A “certified green home” is independently verified across seven categories, to ensure all standards are met for increased efficiency, better health, and reduced negative environmental impact.

ecoSelect Third Party Energy Certification –

The ecoSelect certification in your new home indicates that the construction is designed to provide higher levels of energy efficiency, per the national HERS index, with better indoor air quality and water efficiency than standard new homes.  We're not afraid to have third party inspectors check our homes carefully, for your piece of mind and long term value.  Learn more about new homes with lower energy costs, here.

Tags: nc green building, green homes