Eco House: Practical Ideas for a Greener, Healthier Dwelling

Overview

A comprehensive resource on ecological health in the home and how to achieve it.

Called the "new architecture for the new world," sustainable building is firmly established as an important influence on residential design. Eco House is a complete guide to the structural features and interior and exterior elements that make a house healthy for its residents and for Earth. From solar roofs to sinks that flush the toilet by recycling their gray water, there are any number of ...

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Overview

A comprehensive resource on ecological health in the home and how to achieve it.

Called the "new architecture for the new world," sustainable building is firmly established as an important influence on residential design. Eco House is a complete guide to the structural features and interior and exterior elements that make a house healthy for its residents and for Earth. From solar roofs to sinks that flush the toilet by recycling their gray water, there are any number of options, expensive and inexpensive, that can turn a home into an "eco-house."

The book covers all of the essentials of sound bioclimatic design:

  • Structures that works with sun and wind directions
  • Optimum ventilation and heat recovery
  • Green roof insulation and cooling
  • Solar heating
  • Geothermal heating and cooling
  • Radiant heating
  • Pellet-fuel heating and ventilation
  • Photoelectric power
  • Turbine wind power
  • Rainwater-cistern and gray-water plumbing

This practical reference also takes readers on a room-by-room tour of hundreds of eco-friendly lifestyle options, including how to clean with chemical-free products.

Home owners can make one change or plan an entire refit to take their house off the grid — nothing is too little. In addition to the well-known measures, such as straw bales and solar panels, Eco House describes the many newer options available, providing photographs and illustrations as well as a directory of manufacturers. These include thermal and acoustic bricks, living walls, vegetable-fiber insulation and solar-sourced indoor lighting.

This is a fascinating volume packed with descriptive photographs and the most current expert information. Builders, contractors, designers and home owners will find it inspiring and practical.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
As an increase in environmental awareness creates a surplus of green—and "green"—products, confusion persists, particularly about ecologically friendly homes. Luckily, Duran's focus covers both big rooms and small details, so those looking for a tiny shift, and those who want a total home makeover (even homeowners in the actual building process) will benefit from this handsome guide. The gamut is wide: composting, tile coatings, solar cookers, climate control, even building materials like adobe, brick, wood, stone, and beyond. There's even info on how to clean using as few chemicals as possible. What's so enlightening about the book is that it combats "greenwashing" and marketing spin by presenting the complexities of the materials; none are all-good or all-bad ("If you use bamboo...make sure that it comes from forests with controlled felling and replanting processes"). This strength may also be a weakness, as readers must now do more research into their bamboo, which may not be easy for everyone. But those inspired enough to read this will likely be up for the fact-finding challenge. While not a definitive tome on all things green, this is a great starting point to the natural life. Illus. (Dec.)
Calgary Herald
The number of ways to green your home grows every year, but Sergi Costi Duran's new book gives you a firm grounding in timeless eco-friendly renovation and building concepts. The environmental preservationist has put together his ideas in Eco House: Practical Ideas for A Greener, Healthier Dwelling. The book is packed with colour illustrations and photographs to help non-architects understand how to put Duran's ideas to use.

— Trent Edwards

YourHome.ca
Sergi Costa Duran writes a book that is both eco-friendly and easy to read for the novice fan of environmentally-friendly building design. The book tackles how to design an eco-friendly house and then itemizes all the attendant considerations, such as the pros and cons of various building materials. For those who want to convert their homes into eco-friendly homes, he addresses those issues in the second half of the book. Readers are taken around the world and shown the best ideas for low-carbon impact ideas. The creativity of homeowners and architects is stunning.... Costa Duran's descriptive writing is a pleasure to read. He likens the outside of a building to a "third skin" and tells readers that the home's health depends on the quality of this skin. Instructive diagrams and compelling photos round out the explanations in helping readers understand complex systems in layman terms... Anyone who's contemplating building a new home, or trying to reduce the impact of their current one should read this book.

— Peggy Mackenzie

Calgary Herald - Trent Edwards
The number of ways to green your home grows every year, but Sergi Costi Duran's new book gives you a firm grounding in timeless eco-friendly renovation and building concepts. The environmental preservationist has put together his ideas in Eco House: Practical Ideas for A Greener, Healthier Dwelling. The book is packed with colour illustrations and photographs to help non-architects understand how to put Duran's ideas to use.
YourHome.ca - Peggy Mackenzie
Sergi Costa Duran writes a book that is both eco-friendly and easy to read for the novice fan of environmentally-friendly building design. The book tackles how to design an eco-friendly house and then itemizes all the attendant considerations, such as the pros and cons of various building materials. For those who want to convert their homes into eco-friendly homes, he addresses those issues in the second half of the book. Readers are taken around the world and shown the best ideas for low-carbon impact ideas. The creativity of homeowners and architects is stunning.... Costa Duran's descriptive writing is a pleasure to read. He likens the outside of a building to a "third skin" and tells readers that the home's health depends on the quality of this skin. Instructive diagrams and compelling photos round out the explanations in helping readers understand complex systems in layman terms... Anyone who's contemplating building a new home, or trying to reduce the impact of their current one should read this book.
Cabin Life
If you ever wondered if green could be stylish, pick up Eco House by Sergi Costa Duran. If it wasn't so practical in regards to bioclimate designs, its beautiful architectural photography could easily be enjoyed as a coffee table book.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781554077823
  • Publisher: Firefly Books, Limited
  • Publication date: 10/1/2010
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 530,451
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Sergi Costa Duran specializes in engineering for environmental preservation and works as a freelance writer and author of architecture books. He is the author of Green Homes: New Ideas for Sustainable Living.

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