Construction Process

NOVEMBER 2016 – Net-Zero Energy Home Completed!

LEED Platinum Certification

Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) is one of the most popular green building certification programs used worldwide. Developed by the non-profit U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), it includes a set of rating systems for the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of green buildings, homes, and neighborhoods. Platinum certification is the highest designation for LEED residential homes.

NGBS Emerald Certification

The National Green Building Standard (NGBS) is the only green building rating system for homes and apartments approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). NGBS provides independent, third-part verification that a new or remodeled home is built to achieve high performance in six key areas: Site Design, Resource Efficiency, Water Efficiency, Indoor Environmental Quality & Building Operation and Maintenance. Emerald certification from NGBS is highest designation for a new home.


October 27, 2016

C-TEC’s Net-Zero Energy Model Home – Ribbon Cutting/Open House

Ribbon Cutting Video


Rain Garden View – September 2016


Monitoring and Automatic Logic Controls

Summer 2016 Work – Ventilation System

May 2016 – BT student and instructor installing kitchen cabinets


April 2016 – Recycling waste material as much as possible


March 2016 – Installing Sub-floor and flooring

March 2016 – BT students Installing window trim


Ready for Green Energy Ohio (GEO) Solar Tour 2015 – Saturday, October 3, 2015

After Solar PV array installation

Solar PV-House Sept2015

Before Solar Photovoltaic Array Installed

Sept2015 House

Spring 2015 – Digging the Rain Garden

Rain Garden Drain3 051915

Second-story porch

Second Story Porch 042115

Basement Floor install – Stego Wrap

BT Jeremy Boyd

November 2014

The Net-Zero Energy house is progressing as the siding and electric are being installed.




Jeremy Boyd BT

Building Trades senior Jeremy Boyd installing siding on the Net-Zero Energy house.

BT siding

 October 2014 – Building Trades seniors dig ditch for the water line and

install a copper water line.

BT & NetZero


Electricity students have been out working on the Net-Zero house. Building trades students dug a trench for electricity students to run underground conduit, and it is now complete and ready for backfill after the inspection.





 May 2014 – Roof







Roof flash integration for PV support

May 2014 – Windows and Doors


Window Install1

Window Install3


May 2014 – Duct Work



April 2014 – Geothermal well drilling and framing work

Geothermal Drilling4

Geothermal Drilling3

Geothermal Drilling1

022114 Roof

022014 Caulking Top Plate

 February 2014

The integrity of the building envelop is essential to the issues of durability and sustainability. The ideal is to create an envelope that assures the minimum introduction of generated power and the maximum in exterior durability and interior healthy environment. The general guidance for this effort is prescribed by LEED and the USGBC. We at C-TEC are especially fortunate in our partnership with Owen Corning and their staff in providing the detailed logistics and design. The detailed drawing by Dave Wolf of Owens shows an effective strategy for controlling issues of air infiltration with special seals at the framing at the lowest and highest points of the walls. In addition the design contends with the issues of water intrusion and transmigration through the envelope by providing ventilation through crucial building planes. It is not just a question of insulation and energy but also the durability issues caused by the intersection of conditioned and non-conditioned space. More about these design and construction issues as we get to the roof and basement/crawl space areas.


January 2014

Another green sustainable framing technique is the use of engineered, laminated lumber for bearing headers and beams. The use of smaller pieces of wood joined by glue and placed under extreme pressure allows for sustainable use of the resource.

December 2013

121313 Framing

December 13, 2013

Rain, Snow, or Shine – Net Zero Construction continues. Designers have employed time honored engineering principles to allow for highly efficient use of small pieces of wood where historically large pieces were used in the past. Two examples of this are utilized in our sustainable Net Zero project. As you can see from the pictures all the horizontal planes (floors and roof) utilize open web trusses as opposed to monolithic dimensional lumber. This allows for the use of not only smaller pieces of wood to create an engineering effect but less of them on a volume basis than dimensional lumber.

November 2013

110613 Trusses

November 6 – Trusses going up by BT students

All builders are happy when the infrastructure comes out of the ground and transitions to framing. Wood is the primary choice for our sustainable Net Zero efforts as trees are infinitely renewable with considerate and proper harvest techniques. Wood is durable when proper efforts are made to preserve its integrity and protect it from decaying forces of nature such as water and insect intrusion. Wood provides moderate thermal characteristics although not sufficient for the building envelop specifications necessary for this net zero house. Finally, wood is wonderful with which to work as it is malleable and can be made to conform to many geometries and many purposes all with material and labor cost effectiveness.

October 2013

102513 BT Seniors Backfill Foundation

October 25 – BT seniors backfilling NZ house

102313 Crawlspace gravel Parsons Hauling

October 23 – Gravel by Parson Hauling

102213 Owens Flooring

October 22 – Owens Corning Flooring being installed.

October 15, 2013 - ICF Walls

October 15 – Insulated Wrap for ICF walls

As you can see in the photos a continuous layer of Naduras peel and stick waterproofing membrane was applied to the entire exterior to seal the foundation from the deleterious effects of water/ice and being underground.

September 2013

092513 ICFs3

September 25 – Installing Nudura Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs)

C-TEC in partnership with Nudura/Holdfast also utilized an ICF (Insulated Concrete Form) foundation form system to define the geometry of the basement walls and hence the footprint of the house. These forms then remain after the concrete is poured as part and parcel of the residence providing an exemplary foundation wall insulation with claimed values of up to R-50, an amazing accomplishment for an area of the house which often bleeds energy to the exterior especially in our Central Ohio (5200-degree day) winter climate with times of heavy ground freeze.

090613 Contrete Footers4

September 6 – Pouring of the Footers – Building Trades class

August 2013

082913 Foundation Footers

August 29 – Foundation Footers – Building Trades Class

The foundation system for the C-TEC net zero house incorporates new building technologies designed to promote effectiveness and reduce expense. The necessary concrete footings were formed using the form-a-drain product which once installed not only establishes the footing geometry but remains as fully defined and integrated footing drains on both the interior and exterior planes of the footing system. This not only eliminates the use and waste of wood forms but saves money by reducing the labor needed for breaking down and removing traditional forms and supplying, installing the necessary drain tile. Our master builder/instructor Rex Wilson also installed PVC bleeders through the footing to equalize any hydrostatic pressure differential that may occur between the interior and exterior of the footing/foundation wall.

Dirt Piles2

Silt fences were carefully designed and constructed with respect to topographical slope to prevent erosion and spoiling of the adjacent open space areas while the earth was displaced from the foundation dig. The earth removed from the area of the new basement was also carefully piled, seeded and strawed both to mitigate erosion and preserve its integrity and finally a platform was created with oriented strand board and 6” of mulch to provide a durable, low impact area for the deposit of the necessary materials for the net zero house construction.

Prepping the site to be LEED sustainable (mulch for equipment and supply storage area and fencing off trees and rain garden area to protect from heavy construction equipment).

Sustainability and durability implies doing no harm. The construction process which integrates our plans for infrastructure with the environment is disruptive as the earth is rendered for proper foundations, reconfigured for drainage swales and has to support both heavy equipment and tons of material delivery. Minimizing harm involves a careful analysis and respect for the work site and its surrounding…in the pictures one can see the careful consideration given to this issue of doing no harm…the tree, important for shading and the natural co2 and water cycles has been isolated by construction fencing to restrict activity over its sensitive root system…in general the visible canopy is a reflection of the invisible root system so the entire area under the canopy has been restricted…the rain garden area, so important for agriculture/horticulture and sustainable use of the water resource has also been carefully laid out and isolated by construction fencing to prohibit construction activity that would compress and adversely affect the areas ability to support rainwater absorption and plant growth.

Groundbreaking -May 2013

Groundbreaking Ceremony

C-TEC students join dignitaries and the Pink Panther (Owens Corning) during the May 2013 Groundbreaking Ceremony.

Fall 2012 – AED students helping in the design process of the house

Design Phase

Architectural and Engineering Design students working on the Net-Zero Energy house designs in 2012. Students worked closely with project partner m+a Architects to design the blueprints for the home.



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