Active House vs Passive House

Is Active House The New Passive House?

May 22, 2019

If you want to create a home that is super energy efficient and as environmentally friendly as possible, look no further than the Passive House standard. It’s a topic we’ve previously written about in our blog post, Why Passive House Is The Future For Energy Efficient Homes. In that post we looked at what the Passive House standard is, what some of the benefits of it are and how Roof Maker can help you create a truly Passive House.

But what if you’re looking to create a house that is incredibly energy efficient and is nice and comfortable to live in? What you need is Active House.

What is Active House?

Active House is basically an evolution of Passive House that goes one step further than a zero carbon footprint, by encouraging homes to produce positive energy which can then be fed back to the grid, often via photovoltaic panels. Active House also encourages comfort and more natural light and ventilation to enter the property. So whilst Passive House homes feature few windows and can be a bit gloomy as a result, Active House homes are quite the opposite.

Active House still includes heavy insulation, high-efficiency glazing, heat recovery ventilation (HRV), zero thermal bridges and are positioned to maximize sunlight and shading. However, they also promote increased natural light and ventilation without compromising energy efficiency through the use of adequate windows and certified rooflights.

[Related reading: 5 Ways To Fill Your House With Fresh Air This Summer]

The obvious “issue” with Active House is that all the extra windows and rooflights mean that solar gain (the thermal energy a home obtains from the sun) can be an issue during the summer. Furthermore, all those extra windows and rooflights are harder to insulate (and achieve the same result) as standard walls. Opting for a rooflight with specialist Solar Performance glass can help to overcome this issue.

Active House vs Passive House

So which is better: Active House or Passive House? The answer is… it depends.

It depends on what you want from a home. For example, if you are simply looking to create a house with a zero-carbon footprint, Passive House is going to help you achieve that.

If you want to take this to the next level by designing a home that produces its own energy and is comfortable to live in because of the amount of natural light and fresh air it benefits from, Active House is the standard you’ll want to meet.

How Roof Maker can help you create an Active House

If you’ve read our blog post on designing a Passive House (linked to earlier in this piece), you’ll know that our Passive House Flat Rooflight is the only fixed flat rooflight manufactured in the UK to have been awarded the Certified Passive House Component seal.

So, if our Passive House Flat Rooflight meets the extremely stringent standards of the Passive House Institute and has been rubber stamped as being Passive House ready, it can be used in the design of Active House too.

Are you considering buying a rooflight or roof lantern for your home? If you are, call Roof Maker on 0116 269 6297. Our rooflight experts will help you to choose the right solution for your needs. Alternatively, visit our showroom or get a quote online.