Unconvential Ways to Save Energy: The Upside Down House

After watching the video on Rural Studio in class, I searched the internet for more unconventional ways to save energy in your household.  In my search, I came across an architect named Robert Nebolon that designed “The Upside Down House” for his sister and her family.  While the home uses alternative energy such as a natural gas fueled hybrid hydronic system for heat and hot water and a solar-powered photovoltaic system, Nebolon also incorporated some strange techniques when designing the actual layout of the house to conserve cool air.

Unlike most homes, the house has the bedrooms on the main floor and the kitchen and living areas upstairs.  This ensures that since heat rises, the bedrooms will stay cool at night.  The upstairs also contains a skylight which sucks the warm air out through a vent.  The house is built out of sustainable materials such as foil coated plywood, recycled teak cabinets, and floors made out of sustainably harvested hardwoods.  Every placement of doors, windows and rooms is carefully placed within the house to ensure cool air is saved.




3 thoughts on “Unconvential Ways to Save Energy: The Upside Down House

  1. That seems like a great and simple way to conserve energy, although it would only work in some locations. Did you find out where the house is located? It sounds like it should be somewhere that never gets too cold. This is a great example of architects taking geographic factors into consideration when designing buildings.

    • The house is in Southern California! The architect definitely took the location in to consideration when building it. The link has pictures of the house if you are interested.

  2. This house seems super interesting! I think I remember hearing about how it is LEED certified. How the house is shaded? I imagine in Southern California there would be issues of sun-control.

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