Residential Case Study
Rubissow Farmhouse, Napa, CA

Passive Solar Design
Major rooms are oriented south for optimum solar exposure. Concrete slab floor and PISE earth walls are used for thermal mass. Wood framed building envelope is filled with cellulose insulation, which has higher R-values than typical fiberglass batt. Operable windows are located in strategic places for natural cross ventilation. Roof eaves hang over south facing windows designed to shade the summer sun, but allow the winter sun to enter the building.

Ecological Building System
Radiant floor heating system is powered by the water heater. Solar hot water heating (future). Rainwater collection (future). Greywater system (future).

Recycled/Sustainable Building Materials
Cellulose insulation made from newspapers and old blue jeans. Dibiten monoply roofing system instead of built-up roofing. Hardiplank cement fiber horizontal siding. Oriented strand board (OSB) panels for exterior and interior finishes. Wheatboard for interior trim and cabinetry. Reclaimed redwood beams for the loft framing and solar sunshading. Custom redwood doors made from an old water tank. Recycled glass countertop. Low VOC interior paints. Waste management of construction materials by the general contractor.


Recycled glass countertop

Cellulose insulation

2009, All rights reserved. Okamoto-Saijo Architecture, 18 Bartol, San Francisco, CA 94133, 415 788-2118,