Net Zero Ready Home a first for Kemp and Burnaby
From the ground up, this project was on its way to meet the requirements of Step Code 5 of the new building code. While the Covid-19 pandemic presented challenges on several levels, the project pulled the best out of the entire team. As the first Step Code 5 home in Burnaby, Mayor Mike Hurley visited at two stages of the build to see the progress. The home met the rigorous process with CHBA and is Kemp's first Net Zero Ready labelled home. The result is a beautiful energy efficient home - exceedingly comfortable now, yet built for the future.
It takes a team to plan a Zero Emission House
This customer came to us with their dream home concept which included high standards of energy efficiency. Every step is important to building a high-performance home where the homeowners can be comfortable and the building is exceedingly energy efficient. After consultation, we referred them to our close partner, Sarah Gallop Design. The Gallop team worked closely with the client through the architecture and interior design phases. Once approved, these plans came back to us, where we consulted with an energy advisor. Here the plans were dialed in to the degree of energy efficiency the home was expected to perform. This determined the final plan for the building.
This project utilized the talents of the teams at:
- Design by Sarah Gallop Design Inc.
- Millwork by Ebony Architectural Woodwork
- Windows by Innotech Windows & Doors
- Lighting by Ocean Pacific
Flooring by Exclusive Floors
Counters by Terrastone Corporation
- Painting by Sherwood Painting
- Home Automation (Home Theatre and Security System) by Premier Automation & Design
- Landscaping by Sheryl Lee Clark Garden Design
- Photography by IShot
- Solar power ready – wiring for solar meets the requirement of current building code
- EV chargers – for 2 vehicles
- 2 heat pumps provide 100% of cooling and over 90% of heating
- 3 ERVs for clean fresh air
- Zero emission home – the building standard for all homes in the near future
- 20' wall/vaulted ceiling in great room
- Full basement legal suite
- Home theatre
- Wine Room
- 7 bathrooms
Kemp Construction is pleased to announce that this project - "What's Old is New Again" - has been selected as a finalist in the 2021 Georgie Awards for Best Residential Renovation $300,000 - $499,999.
TheGeorgie Awards®, presented by the Canadian Home Builders' Association of British Columbia, is Canada's premier housing awards program attended by over 600 industry professionals, government officials, and industry partners. The 29th Annual Georgie Awards® Gala will be held virtually on March 20, 2021 in Vancouver.
FROM START TO FINISH: Follow the journey of this high performance home
Demolition, Excavation and Foundation
A Built Green home doesn’t just mean creating a house that is energy efficient, it means addressing sustainability in every step of the process. In this example, the excavation team recycled 85% of the old home.
Building a high-performance home begins with the foundation. We started with geofoam insulation, poured the footings and then built the Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF) from Pacific ICF. ICF’s are the builder’s choice for energy efficiency. They are assembled on-site and don’t need to be removed like traditional wood forms, so there is reduced on-site waste. Insulated Concrete Forms also form an insulate layer around the concrete, contributing to a warmer but less humid home.
Around the exterior of the ICF foundation and inside the traditionally framed garage foundation are the black sheets of ‘dimple board’. The ‘dimples’ make the plastic stand out from the wall, leaving a free-draining air space protecting the ICF foundation. If any water reaches this air space, it easily flows to the bottom of the dimple mat.
In the videos below, Steve Kemp explains Insulated Concrete Walls (ICF) in detail.
Framing with BASF Wall Systems
This project was built using the BASF Patented Wall system, which is constructed indoors before being transported to the site to be raised. The manufacturing of the wall frames took 1-2 weeks and the installation was done in another week or so. This is the only certified wall system available for building to high-performance standards and one of the many reasons we build with them, as we know we can trust the research, testing and rigour put into the designs and materials. Working with fellow industry experts means we can take the guesswork out of meeting the rigorous standards of the new BC Step Code!
High performance wall system shortens construction timeline
The first floor walls were up on this Burnaby custom home - and all within a day! The second storey walls were installed in another full day. With the main floor and second floor in place, the roof trusses were delivered to the site and installed over the remainder of the week. A 30 degree angle at the middle of the home, meant that the trusses and floor system were more complex than that of a standard home.
Using this high performance wall system installed in such a short timeline gave us an incredible jump on getting to rough-ins and keeping the interior of the home dry.
This phase is definitely the non-sexy stuff but of the utmost importance to keep the home warm or cool, keep the lights on and water flowing in the home. Wiring for smart home technology by Premier Automation also happened during this part of the project, prior to the drywall being installed.
Heating and Ducting Installation
The size of the interior space and the step code goals required unique heating and cooling solutions. The main home utilizes two heat pumps and air handlers to provide 100% of the cooling and 90 - 95% of the heating. The other 5 to 10% is provided by electric secondary heat. There are three ERVs (Energy Recovery Ventilator) providing clean fresh air to the three levels of the house as well as the independent suite in the lower level. The bathroom vents for the ERVs are upgraded to Power Vents to maximize air flow when it is needed. The suite is heated utilizing ceiling Far Infrared heating panels from ThermaRay.
On a freshly “ducted” cold air return system in the Net Zero Ready custom home, the metal ducts prevent build-up of dust and dirt - which means the homeowner and her family will be breathing clean, healthy air for a long time to come.
This home is pre-wired for solar panels, when the client decides to make the investment. Every year the cost for PV is going down and the output of the PV photovoltaics panels go up. The trusses are PV rated and the roof exposures are left mostly open to allow maximum panel coverage.
The make up air systems for the stove venting are calibrated.
Over the summer months, we offered behind the scenes tours of this exciting project. Tours took a dive into the construction methods and technologies we’ve used to make this home Net Zero ready, including how we went from foundation and backfill to roof sheathing and waterproofing being complete in just under a month. Many people came to visit and see the progress - from industry colleagues, architects, engineers, energy advisors, designers, potential customers, even the Mayor of Burnaby, Mike Hurley! This project became the first Step Code 5 home in Burnaby, which is an exciting milestone for us and the city.
Blower Door Test
Two blower door tests were conducted on the home. One test was done before drywalling, to ensure the home was airtight and reaching the intended energy efficiency goals. The minimum for Step Code 5 is 1 (the lower the score the better) and we are very proud to say this project met and exceeded this requirement with a final score of 0.670! Learn more about the benefits of performing a Blower Door Test. The second blower door test was done after project completion.
This part of the work is when it all comes together starting with drywall, trim, painting, installing indoor fixtures for lighting and plumbing.
To give an idea of the scope of the project, drywall required six highly experienced drywall taping guys on site. Painters from Sherwood Painting, followed in close pursuit. The tilers came in after for priming and touch up. Next, the mechanicals were installed and we sourced specialized sound dampening materials to eliminate harmonic vibration in the building structure. The exterior siding and trims progressed very nicely with extra care taken and close attention to detail.
While the finishing touches were being made, the homeowners were able to move in and start enjoing their new sanctuary. Each phase of this project and the trades and team involved, took it one step closer to being a Net Zero Ready home. At Kemp, we're at the forefront of building with innovative technologies, and working on this high-performance home was an exciting journey.