All Blog Posts (900)

Important Tips to Reduce Electricity Cost

Electricity comes at a cost. There’s simply no getting around that problem (short of installing your own solar panels, of course). However, that doesn’t mean that you have to be stuck with high power bills. There are several ways that you can reduce the amount of your electricity cost – and they don’t necessarily involve turning off your air conditioner in the middle of summer, either.  Here are some excellent ways to knock those costs down.

 

Get a Smart…

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Added by David Adam on November 18, 2013 at 11:54pm — No Comments

Why Are There Hybrid Water Heater 'Studies,' Mommy?

The old MBA technique: make the man go fetch the data, huh? It would be unconscionable to install a piece of equipment in a customer's home that is known by everyone to not be durable: http://www.amazon.com/GE-GeoSpring-Hybrid-Heater-GEH50DNSRSA/produc...  One poor…

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Added by Tom Delconte on November 16, 2013 at 6:30am — 2 Comments

Air Leakage Testing a New Off-Grid High Performance House

We had the great pleasure of air leakage testing a new off-grid, high performance house last week. It was the most air tight building we’d ever tested!

DSC_0524

Situated on a hill overlooking the sweep of the Saugeen River below.

Builder Steven…

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Added by Greg Labbe on November 12, 2013 at 11:30am — 2 Comments

Will California AB 327 work?

So I met a man from SDG&E the other day. It was a chance meeting as he was explaining to a customer how he was being charged for electricity. He was very informed and I picked his brain with a few question trying not to be to intrusive.  He explained some of the new changes in charges that will be forth coming. Flat rates for electricity in California

A little background.

 The great Enron Crisis of 2000 caused sweeping changes in rates and how we as consumers we are charged…

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Added by Glen Gallo on November 11, 2013 at 10:30pm — 2 Comments

Perception: The Service Technician

It was not too long ago that the HVAC Service Technician took great pride in representing the company he or she worked for. They would be at work early, enthusiastic for the day ahead; helping the elderly without heat first after the big snow storm. They would answer their emergency calls within minutes after the noise of the dreadful beeper, and later cell phone. It only took about five minutes, but shining their boots before heading out the door felt like an eternity. Removing them when… Continue

Added by Christopher Morin on November 10, 2013 at 11:35am — No Comments

The Cult of the Blower Door

A homeowner was referred to me as someone who might be able to help him solve a serious moisture problem in his home here in Central New York.  The caller’s home started out in the 1950s as what we near the Adirondacks refer to as a “camp,” but it had been greatly expanded and improved over the years, and such places are often really lovely.

 

He mentioned that the moisture problem is so severe that he has a commercial dehumidifier going 24/7/365 (366 in leap year), and he…

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Added by Ed Voytovich on November 8, 2013 at 8:49am — 3 Comments

The Importance Of Furnace Cleaning and Maintenance

As the trees start to lose their leaves and the temperatures begin to drop, we tend to turn our home heating system on for comfort. However, what most people don’t realize is that, like any other appliance, our furnace also needs regular care in order to perform at its highest as well as to last longer.

First: Clean up your Furnace

Regardless of what type of furnace you have, …

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Added by Matthew Zajechowski on November 6, 2013 at 5:35pm — No Comments

We're Too Serious

While preparing for Home Energy’s 30th anniversary, we leafed through some of the earliest issues. Today’s issues are slick compared to those early years. It was amateur hour then because an untrained staff researched and wrote articles, prepared artwork, edited, typeset, proofed, and much more. Still, the topics have not changed much and—sadly—some of the editorials from the 1980s…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on November 5, 2013 at 10:00am — No Comments

Capturing the Value of Green - Step by Step

Don't miss this FREE Event open to the public that includes the step by step process for gaining more value for homes with green and energy efficient features.  December 2, 5:30 - 7:30, DIRTT Environmental Solutions, 836 E University, Phoenix, AZ 85034

Featured Speakers - Sandra Adomatis, Adomatis Appraisal Service, Punta Gorda, Florida; Chriss Wass, Firefly Living; & Matt Thorne, Nova Home Loans.  

Food & Drinks will be served. 

To…

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Added by Jan Green on November 5, 2013 at 9:44am — No Comments

2 Day Green Certified Course for Appraisers in Phoenix

First 25 will be refunded the $75 Fee for this 2 day course, includes:

Introduction to Green Building & Case Studies in Green Residential Buildings.  

12/3 - 4, 8 - 5, Phoenix Business & Workforce Development Center, 302 N First Ave, 6th Floor, Phoenix, 85003.

Courses will be taught by Sandy Adomatis, Adomatis Appraisal Service, Punta Gorda, Florida; Vice Chair for Education for the Appraisal Institute. 

To Register:  …

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Added by Jan Green on November 5, 2013 at 9:40am — No Comments

Electric Thermal Storage vs. Heat Pump Water Heaters

Contributing Author: Ben Schoenbauer 



Which residential water heating technology is best for meeting electricity savings goals? It will depend if the goal is reducing total consumption or lowering peak demand



In Minnesota,…

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Added by Anna Jursik on November 5, 2013 at 8:40am — 39 Comments

Check out the latest "Housing and Home Environment News"

Home Energy authors and Cornell College of Human Ecology professors Joe Laquatra and Mark Pierce and colleagues provide important information for anyone interested in energy efficient and healthy homes. In this issue they cover the presence of dangerous levels of radon in natural gas extracted through…

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Added by Jim Gunshinan on November 4, 2013 at 3:30pm — 3 Comments

Carbon Monoxide (CO): Weapon of Mass Destruction

There is nothing more frustrating to me than seeing needless deaths, particularly in America.  I thought I saw my share chasing down WMD's that were never found in the Middle East.  Does it sound that outrageous to put Carbon Monoxide in the same class as these?  Think about it: a Colorless, Odorless Gas that poisons it's targets by being inhaled.  The only thing a ruthless Dictator is missing is a way to weaponize this.  Based on…

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Added by Christopher Morin on November 1, 2013 at 6:05pm — No Comments

Intelligence, Connectivity, Efficiency – the new ICE Age in Energy Management!

Energy is needed everywhere – be it industry, agriculture, homes, buildings, infrastructure or services. Even as we grapple with the twin-headed monster of rising energy demand and ravaging carbon emission, we are only left with Hobson’s choice – the need to manage energy efficiently.

 …

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Added by Eshwar Parasuraman on October 29, 2013 at 11:21pm — No Comments

High Efficiency Should Be a Drain: A Closer Look at Condensing Boilers

Reposted from i.e., the Center for Energy and Environment's Innovation Exchange blog -- http://mncee.org/Innovation-Exchange/ie/

The market share of condensing boilers, sometimes called high efficiency boilers, has increased dramatically over the last several years, thanks in part to utility programs that provide rebates. Unfortunately, many of these newly installed condensing boilers…

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Added by Lester Shen on October 29, 2013 at 12:30pm — 5 Comments

Tucking a garage under the second floor is a common practice, but is it a GOOD one?

As the price of land edges up, the practice of tucking a garage under the second floor of a house is common practice, but is it good practice? The bedroom above the garage has earned the moniker of “The Bonus Room” as it tends to be the most troublesome room in the house with the most comfort complaints from home owners.

 …

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Added by Greg Labbe on October 28, 2013 at 3:30pm — 3 Comments

Spot the Design Weakness - For Northern Climates

If we had a dime for each weak building assembly detail we saw, we’d be rich. In our 14 years of diagnosing comfort problems for clients; the exposed floor ranks as one of the most stark discomfort features of a home, new or old.

Walking home from the coffee shop Sunday and came across the feature below. Have a look at the photo and see how many design errors you can pick out:…

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Added by Greg Labbe on October 22, 2013 at 7:49pm — 11 Comments

Green Stamps - Real Estate Investor Sells "Green-and-Flips" for More

Real estate investor Kassi Pelley had bought and sold a number of “fix-and-flip” homes in metro Denver when she fell down the rabbit hole of green building and certifications.  She’s gotten a price bump – the “green premium” – on every home she’s upgraded and certified since, and she hasn’t…

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Added by Melissa Baldridge on October 16, 2013 at 3:00pm — 5 Comments

Why I refuse to participate in Energy Upgrade California

When I first heard of Energy Upgrade California I was excited. Energy upgrade packages for existing homes with rebates sounded awesome. I attended the ACI conference in LA which was the kick off. The event was interesting as we heard from program developers of how the program would be initiated. I also attended some orientation sessions at the CCSE. I liked what I heard. As my business is primarily residential repairs and upgrades I thought this would be a perfect fit.

What I have…

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Added by Glen Gallo on October 10, 2013 at 11:59pm — 4 Comments

This is the Future

Last week an opening ceremony kicked off the Solar Decathlon in sunny Irvine, California. While the crowd listened to the major sponsors of the event welcome us, we heard excitement and anticipation in their voices. After all, this has been an event two years in the making.

Usually held in Washington, D.C., the mayor of Irvine, Steven Choi, was proud to welcome this international event to his home. “Even though the federal government is shut…

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Added by Macie Melendez on October 10, 2013 at 3:30pm — 1 Comment

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