The Complete Guide to Building Affordable Earth-sheltered Homes

The Complete Guide to Building Affordable Earth-sheltered Homes

Everything You Need to Know Explained Simply

Book - 2011
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The home, an essential part of the American dream, has been beset by troubles since the beginning of the Great Recession in 2007. Whether from an unstable housing economy, ever-rising energy costs, or the environmental ruin of urban sprawl, the origin and variety of these assaults can be bewildering. Surprisingly, some of the answers to many of these modern-day troubles lie in some of humanity's most ancient building techniques. Earth-sheltered building has existed since the heyday of Skara Brae in Scotland 5,000 years ago, and is used today by people around the world, from the Yaodong of north-west China to the subterranean residents of Coober Pedy, Australia, and even to converted missile silos in America. If you have ever looked at your power bill in stunned disbelief, if you are interested in green building techniques, or if you want your home to stand out (or hide out), then this book is for you. Contrary to popular misconceptions of being cramped, dark, or dank domiciles, earth-sheltered homes come in a number of different styles, incorporating brilliant techniques designed to bring light and air into the home. With The Complete Guide to Building Affordable Earth-Sheltered Homes, you will learn about the many different types of earth-sheltered homes and their various advantages, including a life span that can be two to three times longer than that of conventional housing, inexpensive building materials, and reduced maintenance costs. Additionally, the energy costs of an earth-sheltered home can be as much as 80 percent lower than a conventional homes power costs. The book will also examine the different environmental factors that you need to consider when selecting which style to build and how to begin, and carry out, your building process. Some of the factors discussed include the different types of soil and how to adjust to them, the level of precipitation and how to manage run off, and how to maximise use of natural light sources. Construction experts and earth-sheltered home builders have been interviewed and their expertise is included in this guide to help you learn how you can create your own underground home. Details of construction methods are found throughout the book, including tips and advice for planning, excavation, flooring, walls, framing, waterproofing, roofing, drainage, and insulation. You will also learn how to pour your own footings and floor, how to dry stack concrete block walls, how to use post and beam framing, and how to waterproof the membranes. With the information provided in this book, you can start planning and building your own earth-sheltered home in no time so that you, too, can benefit from the natural protection of the earth. If earth-sheltered building is good enough for Bill Gates $136 million mansion, then it just might be good enough for you too.
Publisher: Ocala, Fla. : Atlantic, c2011.
ISBN: 9781601383730
Branch Call Number: 690. 8370473 MCC
Characteristics: 288 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.

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