Comparing Passive House with Active House

activehouse01A Passive House is an energy-efficient building standard that is well-known in Europe and gaining popularity in North America. Active House on the other hand, implements some of the same ideas that Passive House has. So how do we differentiate one from the other?

Although the objectives of both approaches are similar as far as sustainability goes, the distinction lies on what each standard focuses on.

Energy Savings of up to 90 percent.

The Passive House building standard got its beginnings in Europe and is primarily focused on energy reduction. The building materials used in this standard ensure energy efficiency and has other factors to consider such as air-tightness, making the most of passive solar gain and insulation.

Structures of a Passive House follow very strict building guidelines in order to meet the objectives of minimizing energy cost and usage. Although the standard is extremely thorough by nature, the benefits can be well worth it as energy savings can reach as high as 90 percent.

activehouse02A more holistic, balanced option to structure design

While the Active House building standard employs some of the similar concepts that Passive House has such as air-tightness and insulation, the houses that are built using this standard extends these ideas by considering a structure’s air ventilation and natural sunlight for maximizing the structure-environment connection. An Active House can be distinguished by its generous application of windows and skylights in accommodating sunlight and fresh air.

Houses of the future

As we become more aware of the environmental issues, green buildings are a good way to go in contributing to a sustainable future. Whether the standard preferred is Active House or Passive House, the important thing to note is that both are environment-friendly and energy-efficient, and ultimately either approach is a benefit to us and our environment.