This is personal. When I heard reports about rampant waste and abuse in the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) that turned out to be false, I thought of all the people I know who worked tirelessly to meet one goal of ARRA—to weatherize 600,000 homes before March, 2012—and it made me very angry. The men and women of the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) met and exceeded that goal, with minimum fraud, abuse, and waste. In fact, they reached 1-million homes weatherized…Continue
As I write this editorial in early October, the outcome of the election remains uncertain. That’s just fine, because it allows me to offer early advice to whichever candidate wins. Here are some recommendations based on my years with Home Energy.
The government plays an important role in lowering energy demand. If Americans expect the government to establish policies to regulate natural-gas fracking and power plant emissions, then it should also address energy efficiency. The…Continue
Denver, Nov. 1, 2012: GreenSpot Real Estate recently launched its “GreenSpot” eco-makeover program for existing-home listings, including a “window sticker” showing the property’s…Continue
Building Science is not really science; it is more of a concept. While the concepts were developed by scientists the system itself is not really hard science. The concepts are generally employed by building analysts and construction professionals. While I consider myself a student of building science I do not consider myself a building scientist. I am simply a tradesman with special training. While some in the field might have different opinions about their role in this industry I am…Continue
Fireplace and Chimney
The fireplace is an absolute must for maintenance and inspection. Although fireplaces are not energy efficient for most case, they can be a money saver if you have a wood source. They are also most efficient when a number of people are in the same room as the fireplace.
Buildup from smoke is a recipe for disaster. Over time creosote is layered onto the tile liners of the chimney from smoke. It happens to be a highly flammable byproduct and…Continue
Will new technologies democratize energy much the way the Internet did information?
Industry movement seems to point in that direction with the rise of the smart grid, time-of-day pricing, distributed solar, and the electric vehicle. Together these technologies offer a vision of a less centralized energy system, one where communities and households ‘vote in’ or shape the electric grid by how they decide to consume energy, a phenomenon also called the …Continue
A seldom practiced design procedure, equipment selection, has been part of the International Residential Code for many years, and local MA/RI code at least since 2010. This critical step is the second part of residential system design, following a Manual J load calculation and prior to the Manual D duct design. I think confusion around the dated manual has contributed to lack of use and enforcement. Whether you are installing an air-conditioner, heat pump, furnace, or boiler, there…Continue
Selecting the right type of heat pump hot water not only save the energy usage for years to come but also impacts the comfort of your family members in a positive way. There are numerous systems present in the market today that utilize diverse power sources.
Before buying the heat pump hot water system, there are some factors that you need to lay emphasis on such as: the capacity of the heater that can meet your…
Illinois Home Performance has had an exciting month and the program is pleased to announce that it has reached the following milestones:
* MEEA, on behalf of DCEO, is seeking applications for training providers for its Building Science Training Series (BSTS) classes in program year 2012-13. Courses in this year’s BSTS will educate Illinois contractors about the technical and business aspects of the home performance industry and will provide BPI CEUs to…Continue
Added by Andrew Navolio on October 22, 2012 at 12:15pm — No Comments
Some of the positive features of the solar systems are:
Owners of solar systems do not wait for political decisions or global change, they just act.
Solar system is easily recognized sign of high responsibility, environmental awareness and commitment.
Owners of solar collectors are happy with every sun beam and have bigger environmental knowledge.
They enjoy bathing and washing using water heated by the sun - especially in the…
Added by Gjorevski Saso on October 19, 2012 at 12:40pm — No Comments
I've been wondering lately why we're so hell bent on testing houses. After all, we're a bunch of smart building scientist type guys and gals, right? We may not be Joe Lstiburek's (for which our families and fiends, unbeknownst to them, are mighty grateful), but we have a working knowledge of air and moisture movement, thermal and pressure boundaries, various Deltas (T, P, and the rest), and all that other stuff BPI made us learn. We don't assess houses one day in Tallahassee, the next in…Continue
Maureen Mahle is the vice president and director of Sustainable Housing Services for Steven Winter Associates, Inc. She’s also new to the Home Energy Board of Directors. As a welcome to the board, and as an introduction to our readers, we decided to get to know Maureen a little better. Below is our conversation.
"Ma'am, we've just tested your house and found your infiltration rate to be 16.7 ACH50, your R-values to be only 26% of the IECC…Continue
It was my first weatherization conference since becoming the editor of Home Energy. I remember sitting in the crowd listening to the opening speaker and being very inspired. We’re soldiers, I thought. Some of us are on the front lines—the weatherization workers—and some of us, like the staff at Home Energy, offer support from the safety of our offices in Berkeley. We are fighting for our nation’s energy security, and for the health of children and adults, and for the survival…Continue
Added by Jim Gunshinan on October 17, 2012 at 3:00pm — No Comments
The discovery of new materials for making cheap and efficient solar cells is the Holy Grail for solar panels industry.
Some recent findings represent a significant step towards achieving that goal.…Continue
Added by Gjorevski Saso on October 15, 2012 at 10:02am — No Comments
When your "check engine" light comes on in your car, your mechanic (or you, with a low-cost codes reader) can get a quick readout about the possible problem(s). Now, CA's Title 24 will require something similar for Rooftop HVAC units by 2014.
See this article:…Continue
Lately we've been thinking about how readers who know nothing about Home Energy magazine, or home performance for that matter, would react if they stumbled upon our website. Yes, our magazine is aimed at home performance professionals, but what about the people that are just entering the profession? Or those that are thinking about it?
In an effort to help those individuals understand what our industry does, and how our magazine is connected, we came up with the following…Continue
Added by Home Energy Magazine on October 11, 2012 at 1:31pm — No Comments
Back in May, I was looking to buy a new flat screen computer monitor for my home office. After spending ten minutes searching online, I found the best deals at J&R Electronics and decided to go down to their Sunnyvale store to make sure that I could find a model that would connect successfully to my MacBook Air laptop. I was overwhelmed by the vast selection of flat screen monitors and really had no idea which one to go for after I narrowed my search down to a 23" size monitor and a…Continue
Added by Alex Katzman on October 11, 2012 at 8:49am — No Comments
Reposted from i.e., the Center for Energy and Environment's Innovation Exchange blog -- http://mncee.org/Innovation-Exchange/ie/
The business and technology worlds make much of innovation and how it will power the future. One process that has become popular as a means to foster innovation in companies is design thinking. Tim Brown, the CEO and president of …