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Old 09-03-2012, 09:36 PM   #1
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What are typical eave heights?


I'm in the design phase of a 1.5 story home with 10' room heights on the first floor, a long E-W axis, meaning a long wall facing due south which I would like to optimize for solar gain with intelligent window placement. This means that I'm prepared to haves eaves extending out about 4' or so from the exterior wall.

I'm not committed to a particular window height at this point.

Possibly conflicting with the above is the desire to maximize livable volume up on the second floor. By pushing eaves out further from the exterior wall and by raising the eave height higher, I increase the intersect line of the roof plane with the interior walls in the attic.

A lot of the above can be dealt with via online solar gain calculators and by playing around with planning software to optimize space on the 2nd, but I find that after playing around with this that I've lost sight of the aesthetic norm surrounding eave heights.As a placeholder in the design, I'm currently using 128 inches for the lowest point on the eaves. I'm feeling that this is a bit high, is it? I know that an eave that is too high is going to look odd, so my question is what are the eave heights that people in the trade see for homes with 10' ceilings on the first floor?

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Old 09-04-2012, 10:23 AM   #2
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What are typical eave heights?


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By pushing eaves out further from the exterior wall and by raising the eave height higher, I increase the intersect line of the roof plane with the interior walls in the attic.
eave height above what? 1st floor? adjacent grade? I'd suggest taking a look at story and a half homes in your area.

are you talking about building shorter walls (4' or 5' high) on the 2nd floor for your rafters to connect to so that you can raise the ceiling height on the 2nd floor?

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Old 09-04-2012, 04:43 PM   #3
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What are typical eave heights?


If passive solar is a point of design, then you should draw a wall section at the southern exposure facade. Research and determine your winter and summer solstice sun angles and draw then on tangent to your window opening sills and headers. This will help you determine your best roof overhang vertical and horizontal extents so you'll have shading in summer and solar gains in winter.
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Old 09-04-2012, 05:00 PM   #4
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What are typical eave heights?


I'm sure you already have this, but in case ......

http://energyworksus.com/solar_insta..._position.html
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Old 09-04-2012, 06:48 PM   #5
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What are typical eave heights?


Don't let the eave height be a driving design issue.....they will be what ever height your roof rafters are.

Personally, I think your being overly concerned about heat rise from sunlight on the walls. There are a lot of tricks you can do with insulation, wall material and natural vegitation (trees) to control solar heating.
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Old 09-05-2012, 11:01 AM   #6
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What are typical eave heights?


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Don't let the eave height be a driving design issue.....they will be what ever height your roof rafters are.

Personally, I think your being overly concerned about heat rise from sunlight on the walls. There are a lot of tricks you can do with insulation, wall material and natural vegitation (trees) to control solar heating.
The solar heating comes from the glazing more so than the walls. Passive solar design is very real and very effective when done correctly. It can almost eliminate heating systems in winter and negate heavy loaded cooling systems in summer if the sun is accounted for and dealt with correctly. If you are not concerned with these factors then you'll need a traditional furnace, traditional central air, and traditional utility bills...

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