Building Green Custom Homes

green-homes-pgYou want your custom home to be beautiful and perform well, but you care about your children’s future and don’t want to build a home that will negatively impact the environment. There was a time when you would have had to make a choice between these two things. Good news. Now you can have both.

Going green doesn’t mean giving up the comforts of a beautiful, high performance, custom home. In fact, a green home can perform better and cost less to maintain than a home built without environmental considerations. To reduce your costs, protect your investment, and protect the environment; Don Holmes Custom Homes has joined with Green Built Texas. We build every home to comply 100% with the Green Built Texas and Energy Star program. Here are some of the environmental issues we take into account when building your home.  (Click each tab for details.)

It all starts with the materials used to build your custom home. These are just some of the materials we use for greener home construction

Versini Hardwood Floors: Constructed of high-density fiberboard (HDF), are comprised of 83-95% post-industrial recycled hardwoods. The HDF composite material is a by-product of scrap wood and sawdust which is diverted from landfills and incinerators and constructed into beautiful wood floors guaranteed to last a lifetime.

Mohawk Carpeting Sorona Renewable Polymer: SmartStrand® with DuPont™ Sorona® renewably sourced polymer contains ingredients made from corn sugar – 37% of renewable resource. These renewably sourced ingredients replace ingredients that traditionally were derived from. Every seven yards of SmartStrand® with DuPont™ Sorona® renewably sourced polymer saves the energy equivalent of one gallon of gasoline.

Interceramic Tile: Interceramic has focused on making a greener product through such policies as recycling energy, water, and clay scrap.

  • 100% of the water used in Manufacturing is recycled
  • 100% of the unfired title is recycled
  • 90% of the fired scrap is recycled

Insulation GreenFiber™ Cocoon®: GreenFiber Insulation is not manufactured with formaldehyde, asbestos, or fiberglass. Nearly all of the materials (85%) in GreenFiber come from recycled paper fiber, and most of it is recovered post-consumer content. The remaining 15% are additives necessary to make GreenFiber fire resistant.

The gypsum board (Sheet Roc): The gypsum board is certified in accordance to ISO 14021 Standards as being a minimum 95% recycled and is verified by Scientific Certification Systems (SCS). This certified material composition can contribute toward recycled material credits in the LEED rating system as well as other rating systems.

Our homes meet the requirements set out by Green Built Texas and the Energy Star. Green Built Texas increases the awareness, education and value necessary for builders and remodelers to construct high-performance, healthy structures that exceed building code requirements. Their standards benefit homeowners, the citizens of Texas, and the environment we all share. In addition to meeting the Green Built Texas standards, homes built by Don Holmes Custom Homes are Energy Star certified, making them a minimum of 15% more efficient than Code Built Homes.

Some of the ways we achieve these exceptional energy efficiency standards include:

Blower Door Tests: Air Leakage accounts for 1/3 of a home’s heat loss. To find any leaks we conduct home tightness tests, otherwise known as the blower door test.

HVAC Unit and Duct Sizing: We properly size the HVAC system using the industry standard Manual J, and size all ducts according the Air Conditioning Contractors of America Manual D and EPA standards.

Energy Star Rated Programmable Thermostats with Humidity control: With the programmable thermostat, you can control the amount of energy you use according to your schedule and lower your energy costs. They allow you to come home to a house that’s the perfect temperature, without having your HVAC run the entire time you were away.

Energy Star rated Dishwashers: ENERGY STAR ® dishwashers use 25% less electricity than other dishwashers because they use less hot water and they save money over their lifetime.

Energy Star Ceiling Fans: ENERGY STAR is about 50% more efficient than conventional fan/light units.

ENERGY STAR compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL): These use 75 percent less energy and lasts about 10 times longer than a standard incandescent bulb.

High Efficiency 16 SEER two Stage Amana Heat Pump: SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. This number describes how well air-conditioning equipment works. A higher SEER means better efficiency and lower energy bills. Our HVAC units also use R-410A refrigerant, the environmentally friendly refrigerant.

Third Party Energy Inspection: An outside inspection firm will conduct an inspection of the building envelope for all penetrations to assure your home meets all energy and quality standards.

Every family uses their home a little bit differently, but one thing they all have common is they need to breathe the air inside their homes. Don Holmes Custom Homes does everything we can to make sure the air inside your new home is clean, fresh, and free from harmful chemical emissions.

Covering Duct Opening During Construction: All of the supply and returns duct boots in your home are covered with duct mask sheeting to keep ductwork clean and protected during the construction of your home. This keeps dust and airborne debris from contaminating your newly finished home once the HVAC is turned on.

Energy Recovery Ventilator: An energy recovery ventilator makes use of the homes existing heating / air-conditioning duct systems to distribute fresh air throughout your home. It exchanges stale, polluted indoor air for fresh outdoor air.

4 Inch High MERV 10 Air Filter: MERV ratings rate the overall effectiveness of air filters, a MERV 10 model runs up to 40 times more efficiently than typical 1-inch filters, capturing dust, mold, pollen, and other microscopic particles. The filters we use incorporate the best air filtration technology for the cleanest possible indoor air.

Sherwin-Williams Paints: Sherwin-Williams have developed paints that have fewer VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds) to reduce harmful indoor emissions. ProMar® 400 Interior Latex Flat,

Dockery Custom Cabinets: Dockery Custom Cabinets are 100 % formaldehyde free and the wood is procured from sustainable forests.

MAPEI’s Ultrabond 980 Adhesive Glue: Ultrabond 980 was chosen for its low VOC’s. This product exceeds Ruling #1168 of California’s SCAQMD. Rule 1168 limits emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC), resulting from the application of adhesives, adhesive primers, sealants, and sealant primers.

With the cyclical droughts we experience in Texas, and ever-increasing water rates, water efficiency is a key concern to Texas homeowners. We help to make your new home more energy efficient by utilizing:

Hot Water Heater Loop System: Two energy efficient hot water heaters are installed in series into a whole house loop system. Each hot water heater and circulation pump has a timer to turn off at night and during pick demands. This system saves on the amount of water you use and the amount of electricity you use to heat it. You can save up to 12% off your energy bill with this hot water loop system.

Vanity faucets and Toilets: The Moen’s Brantford and Eva faucets, along with the American Standard Cadet 3 series toilets we use meet the WaterSense criteria to conserve water without sacrificing performance. WaterSense is a program sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to promote water efficiency (think of it as the Energy Star program, but for water instead of electricity). A product with the WaterSense label indicates that it meets water efficiency and performance criteria outlined by the EPA to help you reduce water use in your home.

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