April and Brahn are building an earth sheltered home in Northern Ontario. They are building a 2100 sq foot, 4 bedroom, 2.5 bath ICF home that will be off the grid, as they do not have access to hydro or telephone lines, so they will use solar and possibly wind. The couple is vegan and will have a large 11 1/2′x32′ greenhouse. While the couple doesn’t have children yet, they are in the plan and the house has been planned accordingly.
When I asked April about their build and how they planned to heat and cool, she said, “We’re pretty much using geothermal. We will have a wood stove in the living room for those really cold winter days and nights, but we’ve been told that you usually have to crack a window in the Winter, it gets so warm! Crossing my fingers that that’s true! Extra cooling will really just be produced by ceiling fans and the like. I believe we’ll have some sort of duct-work to get heat and basic ventilation to move consistently throughout the entire house.”
The “crossing my fingers that that’s true” makes me chuckle, as I feel the same way. I hear all these things about earth sheltering and only hope it will be as great as I expect, even though I truly don’t know what to expect. Does that make sense? What I am trying to say, it is hard to predict what your heating and cooling needs will be with a non traditional building method.
I look forward to watching this project come together. You can check out their blog here.