Green living is more than a trend, especially here in Maine. We are fortunate to live in a state with bountiful natural beauty and for many, choosing to live in a green home is another way to help preserve our planet. Moving forward with a sustainable home is a personal choice, whether it be for monetary or ethical reasons.
But before you begin, we thought we’d create a primer on ‘green terms’. We understand the science and terminology related to sustainable homes can be overwhelming at times. Below is a sample of the green terms we rounded up. For the full glossary, go here.
Active Solar Heating
Systems that collect and absorb solar radiation, then transfer the solar heat directly to the interior space or to a storage system, from which the heat is distributed. There are two types of systems: liquid-based systems and air-based systems. If a system cannot provide adequate space heating, an auxiliary or back-up system provides the additional heat. Both air and liquid systems can supplement forced air systems.
Blower Door Test
A test that measures the air tightness of a building.
Cellulose Insulation – Post consumer Recycled Content
Plant fiber that is used in wall and roof cavities to separate the inside and outside of the building thermally and acoustically. Typical materials used to manufacture the product include old newspapers, and telephone directories and borates and ammonium sulfate are included to retard fire and pests. Four major types of loose-fill cellulose products have been developed under a variety of brand names and are generally characterized as dry cellulose, spray applied cellulose, stabilized cellulose and low dust cellulose.
Fresh Air Ventilation
A mechanical ventilation component of the HVAC system that draws in fresh air rather than recirculating and filtering air within a home.
Volatile Organic Compound (VOC)
An organic gas with harmful effects on air quality. VOCs are frequently associated with paint, pesticides, carpet, and adhesives.