Check out this ultra-energy efficient SE Portland Passive House this weekend


Have the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, the devastating forest fires in Oregon or the record-breaking scorching summer temperatures in Portland sparked your interest in the fight against a warming planet?

Some environmentally conscious people focus not only on retrofitting, but also on future equipment for their home to make it more energy efficient and more resistant to extreme weather events.

If you’re looking to save energy – and the planet – on both the large and small scale, take a look at a House in southeast Portland that has been remade to use a third of the energy it once needed.

The converted two-story house of Tad and Maria Everhart in the Mount Tabor district is free to all visitors International Passive House Days Tour from Friday to Sunday.

For over a decade, the Everhart family of four has been methodically converting their 24-year-old home to meet Passive house Building standards by making the apartment airtight and fully electric.

>Energy efficient rental at Laurelhurst bungalow helps pay the owner’s rising taxes

By insulating walls, windows and attics as well as installing high-performance windows with thermal blinds, you can maintain pleasant temperatures all year round and avoid drafts and moisture problems.

Studies show that a well-insulated house heats up more slowly in summer and cools much more slowly in winter than others.

“We turned off our heating during PGE’s ‘peak events’ with no complaints,” said Tad Everhart. “Thick insulation also dampens TriMet buses that howl their engines, sirens, garbage trucks, traffic and other city noise.”

To improve indoor air quality, a ventilation system with heat recovery continuously blows filtered air into the interior, while stale air is discharged from the kitchen and bathrooms.

And by replacing gas appliances with an inductive hob, convection oven, advanced carbon dioxide refrigerant water heater and electric laundry drying cabinet, Everharts have reduced their energy consumption and carbon footprint.

Your gas pipeline was ceremoniously disconnected in 2017 by a worker from NW Natural.

“To date, we’ve avoided using about 100 megawatt hours less than if our house were on the same trajectory as before,” said Tad Everhart.

Since the retrofit, or “EnerPHit”, started, the family saved the equivalent of enough electricity to run on electricity 33,000 apartments for one hour, calculated according to the. published information

Scott Kosmecki from Hinge-Build built a passive house for his family in Portland.

According to the non-profit organization, new buildings that meet high passive house standards consume 80 to 90 percent less energy for heating and cooling Passive House Northwest, a group dedicated to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in construction.

The Passive House Northwest produced a in 2016 Online instructions with nearly 45 examples of super-insulated homes in Oregon and Washington designed with advanced window and door technology and balanced mechanical ventilation with efficient heat transfer, i.e. heat recovery in winter and either heat transfer bypass or heat removal in summer.

Zero-energy houses, which use less energy than they generate, also use solar panels to power energy-efficient devices and heating and cooling systems.

The Everharts pay about $ 6 more per month for PGEs 100% renewable electricity program. They said that with the bonus they can support the future without having to install a wind turbine in the yard or solar panels on the roof.

Her hope: “With more attention and investment in deep energy savings, our society will get 100% renewable energy much sooner,” said Tad Everhart. “And time is of the essence. The sooner we eliminate emissions from buildings, the sooner we can start healing and restoring our climate. “

The Everharts renovated single-family house at 539 SE 59th Court is open on Friday, November 5th from 1pm to 5pm and on Saturday, November 6th and Sunday, November 7th from 9am to 5pm. Park on Southeast Stark Street or Southeast 58th Avenue. RSVP in advance at 503-239-8961 or

Visitors must have proof of COVID-19 vaccination and wear a mask.

– Janet Eastman | 503-294-4072 | @janeteastman

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