Compact volume in positive house

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Compact volume in positive house

Why compact volume is important in a positive house?

Why compact volume is basic to a passive house?


May you don’t know us yet, let’s have a quick introduction: we are ERA architects.
Actually, I’m Esther Rovira, architect and passive house designer in Barcelona, Catalonia and Andorra for either passive houses, efficient houses and positive houses.
In this post ‘Compact volume in positive house’, You will find our professional recommendation.
I hope it helps you!
Let’s go!


Renovate air 
Having a passive or positive house means deliver comfort.
One of the laws to deliver comfort means to avoid foul air in ‘da house’.
Avoiding foul air inside, means to renovate the air without loosing comfort.
In a positive house this is done with a ventilation system instead of opening the windows (if you open the windows you loose heat or cooling from the inside).

Air and Volume
So the air needs to move through the house at a speed that is not annoying while still renovating all the house air volume three times every hour.
Now imagine a room that is shaped to be a cube. The new air will flow along that room very easily to deliver comfort.
Now instead imagine a room shaped as a labyrinth. First, the air will need more speed. Then, will still struggle to deliver renovated fresh air three times every hour

In numbers
That means there’s a difference of renovated air heat recovery depending on the compacity of your house design.
For example you could have a 100m2 house of 10 by 10m being very compact or a horse shoe shaped 100m2 house.
The first will need lower air speed to deviled air renovation. Also will keep best the recovered heat from the ventilation machine at least 17% better.


Let me tell you something that happened to us in studio.
There was this time we helped a famous architect get the passive house certification for his luxury design in Mallorca. We received the project when construction had already started.
Guess what? The full house was a snake shape. We struggled to make the ventilation work.
The result was the client suffered extra costs with two ventilation machines, doubled insulation thicknesses, expensive sun films and shading for a dozen of small windows. Not the process you’ve pictured when thinking of your dreamed home.


Our professional recommendation:
You don’t have to hire us.
But PLEASE hire an architect that’s also a Passive House designer.
Makes things so much easier for you and your future positive house!

You may also be interested in:
Our other post with the list of important aspects when designin a positive house: ‘6 musts for a positive house’



Hope this post ‘Compact volume in positive house’ is helpful!

Best of luck on your positive house adventure.
See you on the next post,



Founder of ERA architects 

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By |2023-02-27T15:58:08+01:00March 7th, 2022|Passive House Architect Barcelona|0 Comments

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