Bioclimatic houses 38 constructive solutions - Green Ecologist

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Construction techniques for housing and bioclimatic house

Popular wisdom must be recovered and bioclimatic houses treasure that architecture and centuries-old experience that we must rescue both for the benefit of reducing environmental impacts, saving energy and rescuing the general culture.

It has compiled a diversity of ecological strategies whose experimentation has developed over decades and centuries. Consequently, such an exceptional legacy should not be lost.

Recovering this experience in our current sustainable constructions is almost an obligation, reinventing them with techniques, with ecological materials, combined with new technologies of Thermal comfort and modern constructive solutions, before any project, however humble it may seem … How to build a bioclimatic house?

But first, let's remember what is a bioclimatic home… "It is, in short, a house that adapts to the environment and its surroundings, sensitive to the impact it produces on nature, which tries to minimize energy consumption and with it, reduce environmental pollution."

Construction system bioclimatic houses

This is where a technical manual of bioclimatic construction of high quality called «Practical manual of bioclimatic construction solutions for contemporary architecture» and that we want to present in the article, whose focus is on incorporating the aspect bioconstructive to the house.

Proposals are developed that take into account the use of natural materials and ecological elaborated through simple transformation processes or with low environmental impact, and that through a series of "Technical sheets" (In total 38) we will be able to inquire about all sustainable construction solutions, from the foundations to the roof of the bioclimatic architecture, in addition to an initial description by chapter of the elements, functions, characteristics and construction materials to be treated.

For each data sheet we find different sections that are:

  • The bioclimatic constructive detail resolved and graphed, as a flat. Example…
  • The description of the element in which it is acted.
  • The description of the components that make up the constructive detail.
  • Possible recommendations in execution.
  • The coefficients of thermal transmittance, wall thickness … etc.
  • A rough estimate of the cost.

The following chapters are described in the manual (Each chapter has its explanatory sheet) that we are going to list and see a technical example of the same document before the bioclimatic system used in constructive resolution:


In this section we will see different constructive solutions in geothermal. The subsoil has the peculiarity of presenting a practically incessant temperature throughout the year, being this of more or less fourteen degrees from 3 meters deep. This is where we can take advantage of thegeothermal air conditioning (See also article on how aerothermal energy works and its advantages) that thanks to the physical properties of the soil, constant temperatures, can and should be used by built-up spaces under the ground or semi-buried, making it cool in summer and warm in winter. bio-constructions getting a better Thermal comfort.

  • Construction buried through basement
  • Construction on reconformed land (Buried above ground)
  • Semi-buried construction
  • Canadian Well (With buried air conduit). By clicking on the following image it is enlarged.
  • Exchanger conduits in foundations

Of interest the extensive article on deep and superficial foundations, types and their pathologies, there are 9 very interesting and practical manuals - guides.

Inertia wall

The mass of the constructed and built elements configures an essential role in the Thermal comfort of the users who inhabit the buildings, especially when there are great alterations and thermal contrasts during the day. The high thickness of the walls with great thermal inertia, the inertia wallIt has a high heat storage capacity, differing its transmission over time. The process of storage and remission of heat can last for multiple days depending on the weather, so we must take advantage of this isolation perfect.

  • Inertia wall
  • Inertial wall are SATE
  • Double inertia wall with ventilated air chamber

Collector cover

The bioclimatic housing Traditionally, it has 2-sided roofs in which the largest plane is south facing and the smallest one is north facing (Europe). This circumstance responds to a natural approach, while orienting the larger plane facing south allows the solar gains to be maximized while reducing the surface facing north and therefore the consequent losses depending on the weather.

See article on how to fix roofs and rehabilitate roofs with coherence, which will also have several manuals of interest.

In the collector cover, clay tile and slate have been the bioclimatic materials of construction most used in traditional covers, presenting; light structure, low weight, great durability, good behavior against thermal amplitudes with important variations between hot and cold, impermeability and high mechanical resistance.

  • Cover with loft and practicable openings
  • Ventilated cover. By clicking on the following image it is enlarged.
  • Double ventilated cover
  • Collector cover with ducts

Attached greenhouse

A greenhouse or gallery attached to a building is a partially closed, partially or fully glazed volume that shares one or multiple vertical walls of the building.

The attached greenhouse is a eco solution based on solar capture through the greenhouse effect. This physical phenomenon consists of the heating of the glass by the sun, which emits radiation in each and every one of the wavelengths. Most are in the range of perceptible light that passes into the glass greenhouse.

  • Greenhouse without protection
  • Greenhouse with awning
  • Greenhouse with shutter
  • Greenhouse with upper slats

Glazed gallery

In front of the attached greenhouse, in this manual it has been considered as glazed gallery that glazed space in the building whose coverage is exactly the same as this, the envelope.

  • Unprotected gallery
  • Gallery with flight
  • Gallery with awning
  • Gallery with oriented horizontal slats

Trombe wall

They are known by the name of Trombe Wall that bioclimatic technique that incorporate an opaque vertical cladding in the project, with variable thickness and transmittance, on its inner face and a single or multiple glazed cladding on its outer face. The space between the opaque cladding and the glazing is partially small (<0.8 m).

  • Trombe wall
  • Trombe wall with ventilation to the outside
  • Trombe ventilation wall with solar protection

Eaves and arcades

Its primary function in buildings is to act as a transitional space between the exterior and the interior of the buildings. bioclimatic constructions; they facilitate the integration of the same with the environment, smoothing the climatic differences between the two.

For the sizing of the eaves and arcades, it is essential to know the annual path of the sun (See more in eaves design - sunlight); Through its study, the eaves or arcade are configured in such a way that its behavior in the face of solar radiation in the different seasons is as effective and efficient as possible.

  • Eave separated from the wall
  • Eave with lateral closure according to orientation
  • Balcony
  • Support

Green roofs

One of the characteristics that is evolving the most in the ecological housing is the green or vegetal cover, although it is not so usual in the popular architecture of the area as other techniques to bioclimatic houses, thanks to the advances in technology produced in recent times, it is a system with enormous potential. (More information also on green roofs)

  • Extensive vegetation cover in continuation with the land
  • Extensive isolated green roof
  • Intensive cover
  • Plant cover cistern

Plant wall

The wall or plant wall It is any element of this kind close to an exterior enclosure of the building that is interposed totally or partially between the solar irradiation and the enclosure itself. bioclimatic building, avoiding an essential part of the radiation that falls on it and reducing the heat input.

  • Extensive double skin green wall
  • Direct modular green wall
  • Modular green wall with air chamber
  • Vegetable wall without substrate

Evaporative cooling

The evaporative cooling systemIt uses a part of the sensible energy of the air and the walls to evaporate the water, energy that is kept in the environment in the heat of vaporization necessary for this process and that is recovered when the phenomenon is reversed.

  • Sheet of water - Floodable cover
  • Hollow-moistened ceramic lattice
  • Trellis - Lattice with water diffuser

What we have just listed is only a small part of the relevant information in the manual that has been edited by the Junta de Castilla y León Ministry of Economy and Finance - Regional Energy Agency of Castilla y León (EREN) in collaboration with the study of architecture Manuel Fonseca Gallego (HERE) and the Institute of Construction of Castilla y León (ICCL) published in the scope of the European Project BIOURB (Cross-Border Bioconstructive Diversity, Bioclimatic Building and its adaptation to Modern Architecture and Urbanism - Co-financed by the Program of Cross-Border Cooperation Spain Portugal 2007-2013 / or POCTEP 2007-2013) that we highly recommend your visit because they also have other manuals of interest.

Access to the bioclimatic construction manual referenced from this PDF. It is also highly recommended to access the article on house plans where the plans of 28 ecological houses from large architectural firms are provided.


Other points of interest of this portal:

  • Urban bioclimatic design
  • More than 20 manuals on earth and adobe for architecture.
  • The shape of the The interactive 3D map.
  • Urban design, more than 30 manuals… HERE.
  • Biosustainable Architecture (22 Documents)
  • The concept of bioclimatic architecture.

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