All Blog Posts (941)

Just Signed up for OG&E Smarthours Program, A new way to manage energy use

How SmartHours Plus works: It costs more for electricity during peak periods of high customer demand.

Other factors, like weather conditions and the time of year, also drive electrical prices higher. SmartHours Plus,

sometimes known as Variable Peak Pricing (VPP), allows you to save when costs are lower, or off peak. Peak hours

are 2 to 7 p.m. weekdays, and prices during those hours vary based on demand (see chart). You’ll get advance

notice of tomorrow’s peak price the…

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Added by Bob Blanchette on January 17, 2012 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Are You in PA, NJ, or DE? Do You Plan to Become a BPI Testing Center?

 I'm wanting to assess which tri-state BPI Affiliates are becoming BPI Testing Centers.  And, in order to not over flood the area with too many Testing Centers, I'm looking to pool resources. We have 25 test computers. This will keep costs down.  If you are becoming a Test Center, or if you know an entity that is, please share that infomation.  It will be public soon enough.  I'm also wanting to assess the need for traveling Proctors.  If you need Proctors, please share that information…

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Added by A. Tamasin Sterner on January 15, 2012 at 8:22pm — No Comments

Figuring out how to go green without going crazy

Utilities worry about a lot of things, such as keeping the lights on, earning a return for investors, and making regulators and customers happy with their service.

Now there is a new worry: How can they protect customers from what one utility refers to as “mental fatigue?”

In this particular case, the utility raises the issue as it prepares to invite homeowners and small businesses to select from among new and possibly complicated rate options made available because of smart…

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Added by Elisa Wood on January 13, 2012 at 1:00pm — No Comments

Watch: 'Passive Passion'

Germany's Passivhaus building standard is slowly but surely catching on in the U.S. Filmmaker Charlie Hoxie tracks its progress in the short doc, 'Passion Project.'

passive passion

Added by Guido Schuler on January 13, 2012 at 2:22am — No Comments

sustain’ Magazine: Achieving Passivhaus in the UK: The Reality by Jonathan Hines

In its January/February 2012 edition, , one of the UK's leading environmental journals, featured an article by Jonathan Hines of Architype Ltd on achieving Passive House in the UK using two well-designed Passivhaus schools as examples. Download article (PDF, 6.4MB; as published in , Jan/Feb Edition, page 39-41)

 (from Ipha)

Added by Guido Schuler on January 11, 2012 at 12:30am — No Comments

Heat transfer: How Heat Gets Out of Your Home and Costs You Money.

by Don Ames,  www.detectenergy.com

Heat flows out of your home in two ways, transmission and air leakage. Transmission and air leakage occur through all surfaces of the home - walls, floor, roof, windows and doors.

The amount of heat transfer depends on two factors: thermal resistance and surface area. Thermal resistance has to do with the quality and quantity of the material in the walls, floor, roof, windows, and…

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Added by Don Ames on January 10, 2012 at 10:00pm — No Comments

UK Passivhaus Design Competition

UK Passivhaus Design Competition 2012

Added by Guido Schuler on January 10, 2012 at 7:04am — No Comments

Why Use Foam Insulation In Your Home?

If you decide to construct your home or are planning to remodel an existing home, you have many options. A big choice to make is whether or not to insulate with old or new concepts. A huge chunk of homeowners use fiberglass insulation and do quite well with it. If you are looking for more efficiency, than read on, because there is a better way. foam insulation is a modern marvel and holds many benefits including efficiency, easy to install and lower lifetime cost. Let me dive in and get more…

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Added by Jason Sherwood on January 9, 2012 at 7:51am — 2 Comments

The Tortilla, The Kitchen Fan and The Energy Auditor

The Tortilla, The Kitchen Fan and The Energy Auditor

So, I was getting ready for my morning bike ride to the coast and decided I needed some calories. Part of my choice was some tortillas. I placed them in the toaster oven and went about my morning. This included drinking my morning coffee and checking my email.

Mmm what is that smell? I had inadvertently put the…

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Added by Glen Gallo on January 9, 2012 at 6:30am — 4 Comments

Today's Power Trip - Heating Duct Insulation and Raccoon Paradise

by Don Ames,   www.detectenergy.com

Please read the article and catch the screen cast at the end of the article.

Earlier in the week, I spoke about construction flaws and how builders have a tendency to build energy waste right into the structure of a home. The contractors really don't mean too, we all understand that, but , never-the-less, poor construction design, short cut methods, and lack…

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Added by Don Ames on January 8, 2012 at 10:00pm — 3 Comments

US beats expectations saving energy

Americans tend to beat themselves up over their imperfections. We eat too much, watch too much TV and owe China too much money. Despite all of our sloth, we can feel good about one area: our progress saving energy.

report issued this week by the Institute for Electric Efficiency found that we saved enough electricity to power almost 10 million homes in 2010 (about 112 MWh). That’s 21…

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Added by Elisa Wood on January 8, 2012 at 5:42pm — 1 Comment

Becoming a LEED AP: Habitat for Humanity, BOULD, and You?

So you have decided you want to earn or become a LEED AP. There is just one small issue, unless you have or are working on a LEED project, just how are you supposed to gain the experience & show documented involvement on a project registered or certified for LEED? (AKA a letter of attestation) As some well know, finding or being able to gain the needed project experience can be a rare opportunity. Fortunately though, the chances for many looking in have an opportunity through a…

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Added by Sean Lintow Sr on January 8, 2012 at 10:00am — No Comments

Where to Look For Construction Flaws and Energy Waste

by Don Ames,  www.detectenergy.com

Construction flaws waste energy, reduce comfort, and encourage building deterioration. A little knowledge about construction methods can help you locate and correct these flaws. Let's face it, homes were not created equal, homes are the result of a hundred hands belonging to fifty different people that will never live in the house, but, never-the-less, have great influence…

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Added by Don Ames on January 5, 2012 at 8:30pm — No Comments

Acronym CRAZY...

I don’t believe this is an industry specific issue but we do seem to have an excess of acronyms. 

For example we have RESNET, HERS, BPI, LEED, CSG, ACCI, ANSI, OSHA, WISHA, OMG, & LMAO! 

Confused yet?  No – then let’s try these on for size… ACH50, ACHNAT, SIPS, DMHP, HP, WH, HVAC, CFM, ELA, SLA and IECC, MEC, ASHRAE but don’t forget NYC! 

BTW can you name EPA, HERC, OSB, PVC, ABS, BD, DB, MDF, MDO, SEER, HSPF, HRV’s, ERV’s, DOE, NGBS, BIA, PV, UV, UVA, UVL, DHW, IAQ,…

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Added by Kent Mitchell on January 5, 2012 at 5:30pm — 4 Comments

Measuring Matters

Perhaps the greatest challenge to promoting energy efficiency is that you can’t see it. People understand electricity produced from a PV collector on the roof, and a kWh meter can easily report precisely how much energy was generated. But with more-efficient products, savings cannot be directly measured; instead, one must reckon the difference between a real and a hypothetical situation. This complexity creates a lingering uncertainty whether the promised savings did or did not actually…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on January 5, 2012 at 9:36am — No Comments

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