The following stumper is presented in BPI's August Performance Matters e-Newsletter.

For this month's stumper, Ham Niles of Evergreen Home Performance provided this story about the home of a retired anesthesiologist and his wife in Maine.

"The couple lived in a home less than 20 years old. They had a tight house, solar hot water, under-floor heat, efficient windows, modern electric appliances for laundry, dishes and cooking, and a backup generator with a block heater and battery charger for when the power goes out, which it does frequently in this town on the coast of Maine.

The homeowners complained that there was high electrical usage that seemed out of proportion with their habits - as though they had a hot tub or AC running all the time.

We evaluated the house top-to-bottom, and found plenty of load - thirteen 90 watt can lights; several pumps for the under-floor heat; various phantom loads associated with printers, Tivos and a security system; but nothing that added up to the 12000 kWh the client was annually seeing. I recalled a story my boss told me about how to use the IR camera – and that led to directly solving the problem. What was it?"

Hint: Infrared of back-up generator (top left) and infrared of circuit breaker (top right).

Tags: BPI., Challenge, Chump, Matters, Performance, Stump, the

Views: 152

Replies to This Discussion

Its the block heater. 

I agree with Lain.  The block heater is on continuously keeping the block at a nice 121 degrees.  The circuit breaker assumably shows the active circuit to the block heater when the generator is on stand by.

RSS

Home Energy Pros

Home Energy Pros was founded by the developers of Home Energy Saver Pro (sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy,) and brought to you in partnership with Home Energy magazine.

Latest Activity

Colin Genge replied to billy g pinnick jr's discussion Blower Door Question
"I didn't take your comment as a challenge. I agree that his impression of what was occuring is…"
9 hours ago
Tom White posted a blog post

Clean Energy Works Oregon: Total Home Performance

Clean Energy Works Oregon (CEWO) is the largest nonprofit home performance provider in Oregon,…See More
12 hours ago
Tom White posted a video

Twas The Night Before a Clean Energy Christmas

From the foothills of the Rockies, RMI editorial director Pete Bronski reads 'Twas The Night Before a Clean Energy Christmas. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!
12 hours ago
Chad Mcaulife commented on Green Jobs Training Center's photo
13 hours ago
Chie Kawahara's discussion was featured

THC Candidate Shares Energy Data

Midori Haus, a Passive House retrofit in Santa Cruz California and a Thousand Home Challenge…See More
13 hours ago
Bob Blanchette's discussion was featured

How does Cycles Per Hour affect real world AFUE?

Some claim that modern furnaces have minimized off cycle losses to the point they no longer matter.…See More
13 hours ago
Dale Stephens's blog post was featured

LED Lighting 24-month update 18,240 hours & counting

Background:In November 2012 I replaced 80% of my home's interior lighting with LEDs (35 bulbs…See More
13 hours ago
Home Energy Magazine's blog post was featured
13 hours ago

© 2014   Created by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service