Article and Blog Post from the Puget Sound Business Journal

The Puget Sound Business Journal ran a great article about the house last week, but it’s only available to subscribers for the first 30 days. However, the reporter, Bethany Overland, wrote an accompanying blog post with photo gallery that discusses some of the “quirky” features that help make our house so efficient (and save us money).

We’ve been really excited about all the press that the house has gotten over the last couple of weeks, and we’re hoping that people reading these stories will be inspired to build a zero energy house themselves, or just add additional insulation and energy-saving features to an existing home.

Solar-powered Seattle home uses clever, quirky ways to be green

by Bethany Overland

One of the water-saving features in Eric Thomas' and Alexandra Salmon's house in Ballard is a Caroma dual-flush toilet with an integrated sink. When the toilet is flushed, fresh water pours into the sink basin for washing your hands. The sink basin water then fills the toilet tank for the next flush.

Date: Friday, December 9, 2011, 5:09pm PST

Eric Thomas‘ and Alexandra Salmon’s house is so green they probably should have chosen that color for the exterior. I wrote a story for the Puget Sound Business Journal’s Dec. 9 print edition on the Ballard couple’s “zero energy house,” which is, in theory, actually capable of producing more energy than it uses.

With 28 solar panels covering 70 percent of the roof of the modern, two-story home, the system can produce up to 6 kilowatt hours on a clear, sunny Seattle day. Although the city certainly doesn’t have 365 days of unadulterated sunshine and the system will on average pull in less than that, the system is nonetheless capable of meeting the energy-efficient home’s energy needs for most of the year. I wasn’t able to include the home’s many efficient — and sometimes quirky — details in the print story, so here’s a tour of some of its features.

Read more.


4 thoughts on “Article and Blog Post from the Puget Sound Business Journal

  1. I love your house and have loved reading all about it on this blog!

    I have a question — I’ve seen that toilet before and wondered — does it only produce cold water for hand-washing, or is it warm?


    • Thanks for your comment. I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog.

      Yes, the sink in the toilet only has cold water. I suppose you could plumb it for hot, but the extra energy it would take to heat all the water to fill the tank would kind of negate the water savings. So far, the cold water hasn’t really bothered us since the first little bit is usually room temperature.

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