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Tour of Bill Brockman’s Super-Efficient Home

When:  May 10, 2019, 2 to 4 pm

​Where:   3842 Brookview Ln
                Burlington, KY 41005  (See map below)

Costs:   None


To Register:  contact Anna Lanzillotta at (513)-556-4217 or

22 years ago on Easter Sunday, Bill and his family moved into their new home in rural Boone County.  It was not yet completed.  But now, after more than 17,000 hrs of personal effort on the part of the owner, the home is very close to completion.  With some minor interior painting yet to be done, only 2 other items remain to wrap up this labor of love.  The vacuum tube heat pipe solar collector tubes are being plugged into the solar manifolds.  The Apricus collectors will supply all of the home’s heating requirements during the heating season, and 100% of domestic hot water (DHW) year-round.  Installation of a 7-panel PV array (300 W per panel) in the coming year will bring the home to net zero.

The Brockman abode was designed and engineered by the owner, a retired PE, CEM, and career project manager who built nearly 65% of the structure by himself, working on it every day for 9 months.  This occurred while Bill worked fulltime for Cinergy (now Duke Energy of Ohio).  The home has 4,948 sf of conditioned space and in 2018 its energy performance was an outstanding 1.36 BTUs/sf per degree day, which is 0.68 per person for this now-2-person household.  When the solar hot water system is fully in service, the BTUs/sf per degree-day is expected to drop to 0.90.  For the first 2 years in the home, the BTUs/sf per degree day was 2.50, so current performance represents a 46% drop since 1998 and the anticipated stat will be a 64% drop since 1998.

The home was originally designed as a super energy efficient passive solar structure that faces within two degrees of true south.  All windows are R6 triple pane with argon gas and low-e coatings.  All framed exterior walls are R35, the foundation walls are R21, and the attic is R100.  There is 2” of rigid foam board insulation under the concrete basement floor.  Primary heating and cooling from day one has been geothermal.  The passive solar works in tandem with the geothermal system.  Now, the new active solar components will provide temperature boost to the sunspace heated air for distribution to all quadrants of the home.  A 1000-gallon water storage tank in the basement will now serve as an energy storage battery with temperature typically maintained at 145 degrees F.  Once charged, it will provide enough energy to heat the home for 8 to 10 cloudy days.  The active solar system is designed to operate independently of the geothermal system with separate heating and air distribution components and controls.  The new system components have been fully tested and are being placed into service.

Driving Directions

From I – 275 in Kentucky
Driving west, go to the Petersburg exit and turn right at the end of the ramp.  Go 1 mile on KY-3608 and turn left on KY-20/338.   At the bottom of the hill bear right onto KY-338.  Go up the hill and along the top of the ridge, then down a hill and across a creek.  Almost immediately on the left is Idlebrook at the entrance to Idlewild Estates.  Turn onto Idlebrook, then left onto Brookview.


From I – 75 in Kentucky
Driving south on I-75, exit at KY-18 (aka Burlington Pike) and turn right.  Proceed all the way to the flashing red light at the intersection with KY-338 and turn right.  Travel past the fairgrounds and near the bottom of the 3rd hill, turn right onto Idlebrook, then left onto Brookview to 3842.

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