Housing with a Purpose
Approaching Soleil, its clean-cut modern design stood out as well as its exhilarating views of the Wasatch Mountains and the Salt Lake Valley. Though striking, aesthetics and views aren’t the most important features when it comes to Soleil Lofts. It’s what’s on the inside that counts, literally. Each high-performance loft is extremely airtight due to AeroBarrier’s cutting edge sealant technology. This unprecedented tightness creates dramatically low energy demand and, with just a few solar panels per unit, Soleil is Utah’s largest zero-net project (600+ mixed-size apartments). Since each unit creates more energy than it utilizes, this project is actually net-positive and is gaining kudos internationally. No power plants needed. No emissions generated. Together, AeroBarrier and Soleil keep haze down, air quality fresh, and gorgeous mountain views pristine. Cleaner air for everyone. Truly, housing with a purpose.
Health Benefits and Financial Gains for Loft-Owners
AeroBarrier and Soleil have paired together as a dynamic duo to create health benefits and financial gains for each loft owner. Radically decreased utility bills with improved air quality are the outcomes of AeroBarrier’s airtight sealant technology. No matter the season, each loft-owner can rely upon consistently low utility bills and clean filtered air inside even on red-air haze days outside. Sounds pretty good from the surface, huh? Let’s take a closer look at the science behind the benefits. Afterall, it’s what’s on the inside that counts.
Inside Soleil: The AeroBarrier Strategy
Mitch Spence, the man behind the AeroBarrier and Soleil symbiotic partnership, showed me around the loft construction site last Monday. I trailed behind Mitch in my hard hat and as he pointed out gaps between door frames, window seals and insulation faults failing to meet the wall. Each common discrepancy and builder error typical to construction cumulates in consistent leaks and pesky drafts. Thus, upsized HVAC systems are common and an expensive means to compensate for hidden gaps/cracks unseen by future homeowners. How do you value the invisible? Since 80% of utility bills are due to HVAC demand, more leaks mean higher energy bills to heat/cool to comfortable temps. In contrast to the pre-sealed leaky unit, I followed Mitch up a few flights to check out a post-sealed loft installed with AeroBarrier. He revealed to my untrained eyes the same trouble areas as before – but now filled in with coagulated AeroBarrier sealant. Mitch drew my attention to the gasket-like covering of leaks – some ½ inch in size and some just like tiny hairline fractures as small as the period in this sentence. Each builder error was remedied easily, affordably and quickly by AeroBarrier’s perfectly air-tight sealant.
Tighter is Better
AeroBarrier is the game changer allowing Soleil Lofts to achieve maximum energy efficiency, a critical step in net-zero carbon living. In more technical terms this means that Aerobarrier reduces the effusion and infusion of loft air-flow allowing each loft to maintain the desired temperature for longer. The average apartment in Utah has an air change (ACH) of about 8-13 times per an hour (1). That means the average apartment dweller pays to condition air 8 – 13 times an hour. With AeroBarrier, the average air change is 0.6 times an hour. That means that, with AeroBarrier, owners condition only once every hour and twenty minutes. In addition, this reduces the amount of Volatile Organic Compounds that enter the living space and allows the air filter to work at maximum efficiency. In less technical terms, tighter is better!
Air Change per Hour (ACH) is the replacement of all indoor conditioned air (heated or cooled) by non-conditioned outside air (outside temperature)
After returning my hard hat and thanking Mitch, I drove away from the Soleil Lofts and was once again greeted by the lovely view of the Wasatch range. The air felt clean and fresh and I took a deep breath. Clean air for everyone. And what greater purpose could there be?