The Healthy New American Home

Among the many innovative products showcased in the 2005 New American Home are several designed to improve indoor air quality, according to Kim Goehring, president of Goehring & Morgan Builders, which built the house. Among the products used were HEPA filtering systems installed in the children's bedrooms. "(The filters) basically turned the rooms into a surgical room," Kim says. "There were very few pathogens or diseases that could grow there."

"You have the ability to filter air by means of electronic and media to keep this cleaner than any other house," says Joe Strada of the HVAC contracting company Del-Air.

An ultraviolet filtering system purifies, sanitizes and filters the air, killing mold and bacteria.

Another truly innovative product in the home is Georgia-Pacific's new mold- and mildew-resistant drywall. "This is the very first home designed to use that material," Kim explains. "They made it especially for this house to bring it onto the market at the International Builder Show."

Icynene Insulation will be another product attracting attention. Blown in with water, the insulation has no dangerous chemicals for homeowners to inhale — and it keeps any airborne contaminants outside. "Because you don't have the outside pollutants coming into the home, you don't have the allergens," says Pam Wesley of Icynene Insulation. "It's a much healthier home."

"It seals the complete attic area," Kim explains. "It's self-contained. There are no vents, no penetrations."

Pam expects more homeowners to request environmentally friendly products in their homes. "People are becoming more aware of clean 'green' products, and they want a healthier house where you won't get sick or have allergies. This is where you spend your time, where your kids grow up. To be able to live in a nice, clean environment where you're not suffering from the outdoor pollutants is very comfortable."

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