Custom Home Builder Asheville, NC - Blue Ridge Homes Inc. -

Chosing the Mechanical Systems for Your Custom Home in Asheville, NC

HVAC - Heating Ventilation & Air Conditioning

HVAC Nothing will impact the comfort of your home more dramatically than the HVAC System you choose. As you shop for your HVAC system look for equipment that suits the size of your house, uses the available fuel sources at your site and that fits your budget. Listed here are a couple of the most popular choices for HVAC Systems.

All Electric Heat Pump Systems

Heat pumps are a unique kind of heating system, because they can do the work of both a furnace and an air conditioner. Thus, there's no need to install separate systems to heat and cool your home. Heat pumps can also work extremely efficiently, because they simply transfer heat, rather than burn fuel to create it. When temperatures fall the system will use electric heat strips to provide supplemental heat.

Heat Pump with Fossil Fuel Furnace

Take the effeciency of the Heat Pump system and mate it to a gas furnace and you have what many consider an ideal system for the money. Your cooling and the vast majority of your heating needs will be handled by the heat pump system, but here in the mountains around Asheville the temperature is known to drop. When the temperature outside drops to below 30 or 32 degrees the gas furnace will kick in giving you plenty of warm air and doing it more effeciently than the heat strips mentioned above.

Mini-Split Heat Pump Systems

HVACMini Split Air Conditioning and Heat Pump systems have been in use for many years in Asia, Europe and South America just to name a few continents. While just starting to catch on here in the United States due to the green building wave that is taking hold, mini split systems have several advantages compared to the traditional central system.

  • They are ductless! By removing the ducts inside your home you eliminate the inefficiencies of the duct work whether you are heating or cooling. You also eliminate a source capable of air degradation in your home.
  • They are extremely efficient. Some systems can have SEER ratings well over 20 SEER.
  • Can allow for an almost unlimited number of climate zones inside your home.
Radiant Floor Systems

Radiant floor heating systems heat a building by directly heating the floor structure; usually by hot water piping or electrical wires which are in direct contact with the floor. Radiant floor heating is usually more efficient than conventional forced-air heating because no energy is lost through ducts. As conventional forced-air often introduces outside allergens and other pollutants to the indoor environment, a building with radiant floor heating will have better indoor air quality. The most common and energy-efficient radiant floor heating systems are hydronic (liquid-based) systems in which heated water is pumped through tubing laid in a pattern underneath or embedded into the floor. Hydronic systems can be heated with standard boilers, wood-fired boilers, solar water heaters, or a combination of heat sources.

GeoThermal Systems

From the Greek words for "earth heat," geothermal systems use inherently stable below-ground soil or water temperatures to heat buildings in the winter and cool them in the summer. Because soil temperatures remain a nearly constant 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit, they are usually warmer than the air in winter and cooler than the air in summer. Geothermal heat pumps transfer heat from the ground (or water) into buildings in winter and reverse the process to cool buildings in the summer. The shortened term "geothermal" is often used when referring to geothermal heat pumps but other geothermal technologies extract heat from hot springs, volcanic activity, etc. The installation costs of these systems is more expensive, but pay back the investment year after year in their effeciency ratings.

Wiring Your Custom Built Home in Asheville, NC

Electric

Thoughtful Planning

Whether your designing your custom build home to be fully automated and highly customizable with power sources derived from both off grid and on grid power sources, it is one of the areas where the client and the builder should really plan some time in the planning phase. All too frequently we see home owners just say, "...just put whatever code requires". When what they should be thinking is how the space will be utilized on a day to day basis and how the placement of even a single outlet to can effect the usefulness of that space.

Alternative Energy Sources

If your planning on incorporating solar or wind generated power then consulting with a professional alternative energy professional in Asheville will be of paramount concern. This decision must also be made will in advance, because it will determine the architecture of the home, how it is positioned on the building site and many other infrastructure decisions to accomodate these systems adequately and appropriately.

Electric

Mechanical System - Plumbing in Asheville, NC

Plumbing Above we mentioned how important it was to plan, plan, plan your electrical system, well the same goes for the plumbing system in your custom built home. The choices you make now will be with you for the rest of your relationship with your home.

Code vs. Custom

All homes start at code and work their way up from there. With code you get a standard hot water heater; either gas or electric. With code your plumbing supply lines run in series meaning one supply for cold with multiple connections and another for the hot hooked up the same way. With this arrangement the system can be susceptible to pressure fluctuations; ie. getting burned in the shower when the toilet is flushed. That is an extreme example, but you get what we're saying. Code makes no requirements on how neatly the system is laid out, but rather that it functions properly. When your decision making process in your home places cost above everything else it will function, but you may pay for those decisions for years to come.

With a custom plumbing system in your mountain home you might get tankless hot water systems that provide for a never ending stream of hot water while saving you money in the long run by not having to maintain a large tank of hot water when not in use. With the custom system you might decide to use a manifold plumbing system likethe one pictured here, which allows for a cleaner and quicker installation and less pressure fluctuations. A custom plumbing system will provide with color coded supply lines so you'll never have to guess again about which is hot and which is cold. The list goes on and on, just as your enjoyment in your Blue Ridge Homes custom built home in Asheville will be for years and years.

Insulation - Saving Energy in Asheville, NC

What determines how much energy your custom built home is going to consume over it's lifetime? How well insulated is your home in Asheville....

Foam Insulation

Insulation

No other insulation system can provide your traditionally framed home the level of energy efficiency that sprayed foam insulation can provide. Not only does it provide for a superior r value, it also seals every little nook and cranny to provide you with an almost air tight structure while providing for structual rigidity.

Batt Insulation

Batt insulation is still the industry norm, because it is a very cost efficient and easy to install and gets the job done. There are many resources on the web to research both these products, so we will refrain from lengthy explanations here.

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