Design of bioclimatic houses


If you have come this far it is because you care about the environment and you are thinking of making your home or home more sustainable. If so, surely you have already heard of bioclimatic houses; a much more ecological type of home, which benefits from the natural advantages it offers in terms of thermal comfort and energy savings, due to the characteristics of its design and construction.

Diseño de casas bioclimáticas - Molins Design


If you still don’t know the main elements used in bioclimatic architecture, keep reading! In today’s article we want to explain and make very clear the difference between passive and active architecture. We will take the opportunity to also list the most interesting ecological construction techniques for the design of bioclimatic single-family houses. We started!

What is bioclimatic arquitecture?

As a result, you get a home that is more comfortable at a thermal level, healthier and self-sufficient in terms of energy consumption. Its basic principles are:

  • Full use of sunlight through passive elements, such as the orientation of the house
  • Fully advanced mechanical ventilation systems. In fact, bioclimatic houses seek to generate clean, efficient and ecological energy
  • Minimal environmental impact. For this, its construction uses non-toxic materials, which can in turn be recycled, and that do not require much energy expenditure for their extraction.
  • Architectural design respectful of the vegetation, avoiding the felling of trees for its construction

The truth is that the term bioclimatic architecture or construction is not something new. Sustainable and efficient houses have been talked about for several years, giving rise to the concept of ‘bioclimatic house’. For this reason, this type of construction is worked in depth in various interior design studios around Spain and in the rest of the world.

Lo cierto es que, el término de arquitectura o construcción bioclimática no es algo nuevo. Hace varios años que se habla de las casas sostenibles y eficientes, dando lugar al concepto de ‘casa bioclimática’. Por ello, este tipo de construcción se trabaja en profundidad en varios estudios de interiorismo alrededor de España y en el resto del mundo.

Characteristics of a bioclimatic house

Bioclimatic houses are closely related to the passive house or passive house design. In fact, these homes are built following various criteria and techniques that allow exponential savings in energy consumption, just like the Passivhaus.

However, bioclimatic buildings go a step further in terms of ecological architecture, including among their characteristics a constructive design that takes into account the climate, the native fauna and flora that surround the house.

Here are some of the most interesting properties that define the model of bioclimatic houses:

Use of solar energy 365 days a year

Bioclimatic dwellings or houses usually have the use of solar energy as their indisputable property, both in winter and in summer. To do this, the home must be built thinking about making the most of the hours of sunshine and also achieving good insulation against the cold.

Ideally, through the arrangement of the house and the construction of our rooms at home, it is possible to enjoy an optimal temperature and comfort throughout the year. All this, without using the heating in winter or the air conditioning in summer.

Sun protection and heat removal

Here the color of the paint on the exterior and interior walls of the house comes into play, choosing light colors and a reflective surface. But also cross ventilation systems, such as free cooling or free cooling. A natural cooling system that uses normally filtered outside air instead of recirculated inside air. For this, a cold production equipment is used.

Thermal isolation

In the construction of bioclimatic houses we usually find houses that are built buried or semi-buried, to better take advantage of the thermal inertia of the land that surrounds them. For this reason, in most of these homes, thick walls are built that retard changes in temperature, with air chambers that interrupt the thermal flow between the inside and outside of the house, etc.

These are the three basic criteria for a bioclimatic home, although there are many other criteria and characteristics to define this type of ecological house.

For example, and as in any passive house, recycling is essential. For this reason, in this type of house the kitchen spaces are designed to make a perfect and suitable selection of waste.

The same happens with technology, imposed abruptly in our daily lives, and which is very present in bioclimatic houses. In fact, any home of this type has a home automation system to make it safer, more comfortable, but above all, more energy efficient.

Green building criteria and techniques

For all that has been said, the design of bioclimatic houses is usually done following the following criteria and ecological construction techniques:

  1. South facing rooms
  2. With ecological covers that are capable of recovering heat in winter and insulating from heat in winter
  3. Its facades designed according to the orientation
  4. Small perimeter, to minimize environmental impact
  5. With a good cross ventilation system and sun protection on windows
  6. Acquire a water reuse system in common risk areas
  7. Construction of an interior patio to introduce direct solar radiation into the rooms of the home