The homeowners of a new home in Duluth, Minnesota went to our local dealer Heritage Window and Door looking for windows and doors with superior air tightness. The team at Heritage confidently recommended Innotech windows and doors in combination with R-Guard by Prosoco to help meet their aggressive air tightness target for their new 4,000 square foot home .
Once everything was installed, the home underwent a Blower Door Test to measure air leakage. Before we reveal the impressive results, let’s take a look at some comparison points to help interpret the reading:
- The temperate City of Vancouver requires a maximum airtightness of 3.5 ACH50
- New home builders in Minnesota routinely achieve 2.5 ACH50
- ENERGY STAR qualified new homes must not exceed 2 ACH50 in Northern Ontario (2.5 ACH50 for Southern and Mid/Eastern Ontario)
- The Canadian R-2000 Program has an airtightness standard of no greater than 1.5 ACH50
- The PassivHaus airtightness standard – a tough standard to achieve – for new builds has a maximum of 0.6 ACH50
The result of the Blower Door Test for this home was 0.26 ACH50 (173 CFM50) – more than half of the PassivHaus standard! Conducted by an independent energy auditing firm, the superior air tightness results are a testament to the building products used in the home. Congratulations to the homeowners for building an air tight home!
We often think of interior design as a phase that happens after the construction of a home, once it's time for colour, furniture and home decor selection. But for great design to happen in new construction, it needs to start well before the project breaks ground.
Christina Aldana is the lead decorator and owner of Calgary-based Aldana Design, Inc. Specialising in full-scale interior design projects, Christina consults homeowners throughout the entire new build process, from concept, construction to completion.
"A designer's role is to help fully craft and communicate the client's vision to the building team," says Christina. "Knowing space use flows, furniture and art placement, and lighting requirements before the plans are finalized allows the vision to be successfully realized. It also minimizes possible mistakes, helping save time and money."
Windows and doors play a vital role in the design of a home. Aside from aesthetic details such a colour and grids, window and door placement and size have a significant impact on a space. In addition to the overall look of a space, they affect all of the design fundamentals, including traffic flow, furniture and decor placement, and lighting needs.
For example, many homeowners want very large windows and oversized patio doors in their new homes. Without the input from an interior designer, more windows and doors can sometimes mean less wall space for furniture or artwork. Interior designers can help by offering creative solutions so homeowners can have the exact space they want without the need to compromise.
Christina designed this large custom-built home in Calgary. Featuring Innotech windows and doors, every space is intentional, functional and beautiful. "My favourite part of this home is the protected courtyard with the wood burning fireplace," says Christina. "We installed a large four-panel Tilt + Turn Door to access the space, making it a natural extension of the formal dining room. Even in winter, the homeowners can tilt the doors to listen the crackle of the fireplace during their meal."
Other spaces in the home, including the great room, kitchen, master bedroom, inglenook and guest bedroom, feature Innotech windows and doors that are designed and positioned specifically for each space.
Once every detail of a space is taken into account, building plans can be finalized and construction can begin!
At Innotech we make it a prioirity to give back to the communities in which we live and today we're featuring one of our favourite community partners, the Southern Alberta Freestyle Ski Club (SAFSC). We've been a proud sponsor of the SAFSC for two years now, and it's been fun to watch the positive impact it's had on Alberta kids!
Based out of Calgary Alberta, the club is home to freestyle ski enthusiasts aged six and up. The boys and girls of the SAFSC train with professional coaches to improve their skills and fitness, and some of the kids even enter competitions located across Canada. They compete in adrenalin fueled events like Moguls, Big air, and Slopestyle, and they also participate in dryland training on trampolines. But, it's not just ski techniques the kids learn; they also learn important life lessons in team building, fitness, and discipline. The results? Happy, healthy kids, and big air:
Best of all, they arrive at every event in style in their custom-wrapped van:
We're proud to support these kids, and wish them the best of luck over this competitive season! Want to learn more? Visit the SAFSC at their website.
Complete Windows in Parksville, BC is a long-standing Innotech dealer. Over the years, they have built a reputation for excellence by continually offering their clients the right windows and doors, along with expert installation services, for their home renovation and building projects.
A recent building envelope survey found that one of the main causes of building envelope failure is "poor construction practices and trade skills". Here's the truth: the very best building materials on the market will fail if not properly installed in accordance to manufacturers' instructions by experienced tradesmen. And when it comes to windows and doors, correct installation is critical to their performance.
Complete Windows knows the importance of not only selecting the right materials, but ensuring they are expertly installed. As a result, they've grown from being a window and door contractor to offering their clients complete house renovation services. Years of experience in home renovations has given them an edge: not only are they aware of the potential challenges that are unique to renovating a home, but they have the expertise to overcome them.
Complete Windows' understanding of building envelope science, knowledge of building materials and commitment to quality workmanship has allowed them to complete beautiful and energy efficient home renovations that provide their clients with decades of enjoyment.
Custom Home valued between $1,500,000 - $3,000,000
Best Multi-Family Low-Rise Development
Best Residential Renovation $100,000 - $299,999
Best Single-Family Kitchen over $100,000
Best Best Outdoor Living Space - New or Renovation
Best Corporate Website
Best Environmental Initiative
Residential Renovator of the Year
Congrats to all our nominated partners; we love all of these projects and we wish you all the best of luck at the awards ceremony in February!
When the design of a new home begins with the need to keep as many of the trees as possible on the property, it's a sure sign the home-to-be will be energy efficient and sustainable. And that's exactly how The Ridge in Kaslo, British Columbia started.
"I was thrilled when I learned that many of the original trees on the property were not going to be cut down," said architectural designer Hajo Meijer from Ecocentric Design. "While many people would opt to remove the trees to have unobstructed views, the homeowners of The Ridge wanted their home to part of its natural landscape."
The result is stunning: looking out the large windows to the lake below, the trees make the house look like it's suspended in the air, floating in the tree tops. Here's the spectacular view from the master bedroom:
The home also features a host of other green technologies and sustainable building materials. From super insulated walls and roofs, concrete floors and triple glazed windows and doors, the home is achieved an EnerGuide rating of 83.
+ For more details and images of The Ridge in Kaslo, click here
Once a year (or more if required), we recommend you inspect and clean all window and door sills to make sure the gaskets are clean and the drainage holes aren't obstructed. Cleaning the window and door sills ensures the gaskets and drainage holes are all doing their job - helping seal your window or door when closed and allowing any moisture that may have entered to easily exit the frame.
We find the best time to this is at the end of summer or beginning of fall, when the insects are gone and your windows are closed more often than tilted. And if your windows are like ours, this is what they may look like after a full season in the tilt position: full of dead flies and dirt.
Using the crevice tool on your vacuum, gently follow along the sill to vacuum up any debris. If dirt is stuck on the window sill, a slightly damp cloth can be used to wipe up anything the vacuum leaves behind.
Make sure to pay close attention to the drainage holes. These are located in the window sill AND on the underside of the sash (the part of the window that opens), as shown below:
When done regularly, it only take a few seconds for every operable window and will ensure your tilt and turn windows are ready for the colder and wetter season ahead.
After a quick clean, your windows are ready for the fall season!
For complete care and maintenance instructions, refer to your Owners' Guide. If you require a copy, please contact your Sales Representative or our head office.
Window walls are still a rarity in many homes; most typical windows and doors simply don't have the structural performance required to build large openings.
Innotech's Hybrid System allows our clients to design and build with extra large openings. Every window and doors is made with galvanized steel framing integrally bonded to unplasticized European PVC profiles providing excellent structural performance.
Building professionals also appreciate our products' design flexibility. Every design feature can be customized, from the windows' size and shape to the use of mullions and transoms, giving each window wall its own unique look.
The structural performance and design flexibility of our windows and doors allows architects to replicate the look of window walls in single family homes. Depending on the height and width of the wall, some structural beams may be required.
Here are a few of our favourite spaces that replicate the look of window walls:
Private Residence on Vancouver Island | + More Photos
Private Residence on Vancouver Island | + More Photos
Private Residence on Vancouver Island | + More Photos
Private Residence in Calgary, AB
Private Residence in Calgary, AB | + More Photos
Private Residence in Ladner, BC | + More Photos
We love seeing beautiful photos of our clients' projects!
Lately, we've spotted a growing kitchen design trend: replacing upper cabinets with extra large windows. And we've got to say: we love this look! It opens up the space making the kitchen look huge, floods the space with warmth and natural light, and is a wonderful departure from "cabinets gallore" designs.
Here are a few of our favourite upper-cabinet-free kitchen designs:
To see more kitchen design ideas - with and without upper cabinets - see our album "Cooking with Sunlight" on Houzz.com.
Blackfish Homes recently completed this modern BUILT GREEN® Platinum home in Vancouver, BC. The three storey, 3,500 square foot residence was designed to be highly energy efficient, have excellent indoor air quality, and be very durable. The home also achieved an impressive EnerGuide rating of 85.
The home features Innotech windows and doors in charchoal black exterior and interior. Two of our favourite spaces in the home are the dining room with classic Terrace Swing Doors that open onto a large outdoor living area and the living room with many large windows placed high on the walls that brighten the space.
Thank you Blackfish for trusting us with your building project!
All images courtesy of Blackfish Homes. Photography by Ema Peter.
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