A holiday home known as the Net-Zero Cabin, recently constructed in Washington, USA, was designed by Coates Design Architects to have zero carbon emissions. Concrete flooring is an essential part of the home’s heating system.
Weather conditions in the state of Washington can be extreme, so the challenge facing the architects was how to create a comfortable environment without using traditional heating and cooling systems that are expensive to run and create carbon emissions. The answer was to install solar panels and a Tesla Powerwall that stores energy and charges the owner’s electric cars.
An essential component of the heating system is the concrete flooring that acts as a thermal heat sink. This helps keep the temperature inside the house stable. All the materials, including the concrete used to construct the home, are from reclaimed sources.
Concrete is an ideal flooring material because of its hardwearing qualities and reasonable cost. It is also recognised for its environmental qualities, which is why it was used in the Net-Zero Cabin.
Decorative techniques including colouring, staining, stenciling, and polishing create aesthetically pleasing floors that need no other floor coverings such as carpets and vinyl. This saves resources, and high-quality concrete flooring should never need replacing. When a building is demolished, its concrete can be recycled.
The main component of concrete is limestone, which is abundantly available without harming the environment. Concrete can be mixed with recycled and waste byproduct materials. Concrete contributes to energy efficiency and improves indoor air quality.