How Propane Enables Energy-Efficient Modular Homes

Modular Lifestyles' portable homes are suited for off-grid, active-adult living.

Steven Lefler, vice president of Modular Lifestyles in Irvine, Calif., has a vision for modular and manufactured housing that encompasses features that are not usually associated with factory-built residences: off-grid living through solar and wind technologies; incinerating toilets; LED lighting; graywater options. Another vital component of these homes is propane. The Quest home, Modular Lifestyles' latest model, measures just 400 square feet and is designed to be put on a vacant piece of land or even in a backyard — the perfect spot for aging parents who are living on a fixed income.

Photo courtesy of Modular Lifestyles      Photo courtesy of Modular Lifestyles

Regular readers of the Propane Energy Update may remember our previous coverage and video of a Quest home, located at the KOA campgrounds in Herkimer, N.Y. "Every day for the next 20 years, 10,000 baby boomers will turn 65," Lefler says. "These portable homes could have major implications for families who can't afford an assisted living facility."

In the Quest home, propane runs the furnace, a two-burner stove, and the tankless water heater, and it is the fuel source for the off-grid generator. The portable home costs between $69,000 and $79,000. "We deliver and drop it," Lefler says, adding that it comes with the solar and battery technology and a dual-flush toilet for areas with a sewer connection or an upgrade to an incinerator toilet for areas without sewers.

Off-grid homes, by way of a modular solution or built on site, come with numerous energy and performance challenges that can be solved by propane systems. Learn more about building off-grid with propane by taking the free continuing education course, Choosing to Live Off-Grid, now available at the Propane Training Academy.


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