In Afton, Minn., Clint and Roberta Elston, the husband-and-wife team behind Equaris Corp., retrofitted a three-story 1960s family home with greywater and rainwater reuse systems and Dometic/Sealand high-efficiency toilets. The goal of the project was to provide an example of how residences can drastically cut water use and energy costs by recycling water.
In the home, Equaris installed a BioMatter Resequencing Converter (BMRC), a blackwater separation composting treatment system the Elstons developed. When combined with low-flushing toilets, the BMRC is capable of reducing water consumption by 40% in residential applications and up to 80% in commercial applications, according to Clint Elston. Additionally, the BMRC can convert toilet and organic kitchen resources into useable recycled products while discharging only safe byproducts, he said.
Equaris also installed its Enfinity Greywater Plus Recycling System to filter and disinfect the home’s effluent to surpass potable water standards. Additional systems installed include a rainwater harvesting and cistern storage system that provides a more constant and reliable source of water, and a hybrid/geothermal heating system to capture solar energy, store it in thermal cisterns, and recover it for use in a water furnace heat pump. Thus far, energy costs have been reduced by 50% to 95%, Elston said.
The model green home was completed earlier this year and has garnered interest from universities and engineering and architecture firms, Elston said