Resiliency and sustainability are two distinct concepts, but they often go hand-in-hand when it comes to eco-friendly home design. By fortifying a home against weather and natural disasters, you decrease waste from damaged building supplies and avoid the environmental impact of rebuilding.
In the United States alone, the cost of damage from weather and climate disasters totaled $152.6 billion in 2021. This cost is only expected to increase along with climate change. This is why many architects, developers, and homeowners are favor resilient and sustainable home design that focuses on energy and water independence, local materials, renewable resources, and minimizing environmental footprint.
Whether you’re building a new house or looking to make your current home more resilient, these products can help you on your path towards resiliency and sustainability.
Home Resilience Product Showcase
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GOAL ZERO YETI 3000X PORTABLE POWER STATION WITH SOLAR PANEL KIT
Powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, the Goal Zero Yeti 3000x equips you with clean, portable energy at the push of a button. It has seven different port options for all your essential tools, electronics, and appliances. Safe enough to store in your home and durable enough to take on any outdoor adventure, the Yeti 3000x can hold a charge for 3–6 months. Charge it with a wall outlet or car adapter, or use the compatible solar panel kit for a solar generator setup. Fully recharges in 14 hours using the included AC wall charger.
OSMO SELF-INFLATING FLOOD BARRIER
Self-inflating flood barriers are an easy-to-store, eco-friendly sandbag alternative. Made from 50% reclaimed material, the Osmo Self-Inflating Flood Barrier is lightweight enough to roll out quickly in an emergency. It starts absorbing water immediately and fully inflates within minutes, creating a durable barrier against invasive flood water. At 10 feet long, the stackable Osmo Self-Inflating Flood Barrier is the perfect size for blocking off garages, wide doorways, walkways, and gates for temporary or long-term flood protection.
WASP EXTERIOR FIRE SPRINKLERS
WASP exterior sprinklers soak a home’s roof and surrounding grounds, protecting against flying embers from wildfires while raising the humidity in the immediate area. They can be installed in minutes — simply connect the sprinklers to a water source and install on your roof with the included mounts. The WASP wildfire protection kit contains two agricultural-grade 360° sprinkler heads and hardware to mount them on the gutters, fence, or outside walls. The agriculture-grade sprinkler heads can spray water up to 33 feet in every direction.
N95 RESPIRATOR MASKS
Though many had never heard of an N95 face mask before the pandemic, they’ve always been a great tool for protecting your lungs from air pollution during wildfires. Particle pollution is a primary component of wildfire smoke, and it’s the one that causes the biggest public health threat. NIOSH-approved N95 masks can filter out about 95% of airborne particles with minimal breathing resistance. For best results, make sure the mask forms a tight seal where it touches your face. Children and pets may need specially sized masks to achieve the best fit.
FIRE SUPPRESSION BALL
Of course, the easiest way to deal with fire damage is to prevent it in the first place. Along with an outdoor sprinkler system (above), a fire extinguisher is an important tool for guarding your home against wildfires. The Fire Suppression Ball is a lightweight, safe alternative to traditional extinguishers. It explodes within 3–5 seconds of exposure to temperatures of 320 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. When it explodes, the fire suppression ball sprays a harmless, environmentally-safe dry powder to extinguish the fire in a 1 square meter area. Unlike standard fire extinguishers, the Fire Suppression Ball doesn’t need regular maintenance or safety checks. And, it comes in at only 2.9 pounds, making it easy to mount in your home or office or throw on a fire in case of emergency.
One of the main ways that houses catch fire is from wind-blown embers landing on the roof during a wildfire. Fire-resistant roofing, especially metal roofing, can help protect your home from flames while also helping the environment. Metal roofs can have over double the lifespan of asphalt shingle roofs, they’re great at resisting wind damage, and they can be recycled when they reach the end of their useful life. They can also help lower energy costs in hot climates by reflecting heat and keeping the inside of your home cooler. Metal roofing can be made of various of metals, but the most common is steel.
KIDDE SMOKE & CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR
When it comes to addressing smoke and carbon monoxide in the home, every second counts. The Kidde Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detector can warn you of potential hazards in your home, giving you time to react and protect your family and property. It uses ionization sensing technology to detect smoke, fire, and carbon monoxide gas. Upon detection, its LED lights, alarms, and voice technology tell you what you’re dealing with. Running on 2-AA batteries, the Kidde Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detector can be counted on even during a power failure. You can interconnect multiple Kidde devices to create a whole-house monitoring and alarm system.
MR. HEATER INDOOR-SAFE PROPANE RADIANT HEATER
The Mr. Heater Portable Buddy is designed to maximize heating power while minimizing its environmental footprint. Lighting it is as simple as rotating the pilot knob and pushing a button, and you’re on your way to near-100% fuel efficiency. The Portable Buddy heater is indoor-safe and comes equipped with a low-oxygen sensor and accidental tip-over safety shutoff system. (We still recommend a CO detector, above.) When connected to a 1 lb. propane canister, it can heat an enclosed space up to 225 square feet for 3 to 6 hours. The Portable Buddy heater can also connect to a 20 lb. propane cylinder with an optional hose and filter, sold separately.
PUMPSPY SUMP PUMP BACKUP POWER SYSTEM
Power outages often happen during severe storms — just when you need your sump pump the most! The PumpSpy Sump Pump Backup Power System automatically switches your sump pump over to battery power when your electricity goes out. With a 2,000-watt output, it can power two primary sump pumps at once. Use this easy-to-install system to avoid moisture buildup (and the ensuing mold and mildew) during power outages. Then, when your power comes back on, the unit will automatically recharge its battery with its built-in charger.
BUSHFIRE FIRE-SAFE MESH
Roofs aren’t the only parts of a home vulnerable to flying embers during a wildfire. Crawl spaces, vents, and other openings can also be entry points for embers, providing easy access to flammable materials. That’s where fire-resistant screening comes in. By covering your vents and other openings with 1/8-inch or 1/16-inch wire mesh, like stainless steel Bushfire Mesh, you can help prevent embers from entering your structure. The mesh traps, holds, and then releases embers, so they self-extinguish before falling to the ground or landing on a combustible surface. Bushfire Mesh is a Class A fire-rated building material, and it can be used for vent guards, window and door screens, gutter guards, patio enclosures, and more.
Photo by Kayla McKenzie Photography
IMPACT-RESISTANT DOORS AND WINDOWS
LaCantina doors are made with dual-glazed tempered glass that’s rated to withstand hurricane-level wind debris. When windows or glass doors shatter during a storm, it leaves your home exposed to rain, debris, and glass shards. Impact-resistant doors and windows protect you from that. LaCantina doors are also graded for minimal heat transfer and solar heat gain, protecting your home (and your energy bill) from hot outdoor temps and bright direct sunlight. The Aluminum Thermally Controlled Door Systems can come with stainless or bronze hardware packages.
Photo by Kayla McKenzie Photography
ROCKWOOL FLAME-RESISTANT INSULATION
Did you know what wool could be made out of stone? Well, it can! And it makes for some of the most resilient insulation you could ask for, thanks to its fire resistance and noise-proofing capabilities. Rockwool’s stone wool insulation is made from basalt and can be used in interior and exterior walls, floors, ceilings, attics, and roofs. Plus, it can regulate your indoor temperature, leading to an energy savings of up to 70% (and decreased energy usage equals decreased CO2 emissions — win-win!). Rockwool focuses on sustainable manufacturing, making its steel wool with minimal water usage and waste.