All Blog Posts (950)

90% AFUE Wall Mount Furnace

I run an energy program in the mountains of Colorado. We have a lot of homes without existing duct work and older style wall-mounted furnaces. I've been looking for a decent upgrade choice for my clients - so far Rinnai seems to be the brand of choice for most heating contractors.  Problem is they have an AFUE of only .82 at the max, so don't qualify for high-efficiency furnace rebates through our program.  

I recently discovered the Energy Saver 90 Plus from Empire Heating, a…

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Added by Cameron Millard on February 26, 2014 at 7:54am — 6 Comments

Water Heater Maintenance in 10 Minutes

I just put together a new infographic on the best two maintenance tasks homeowners can do with their water heaters.  The best part is that they only take about ten minutes or so to perform!  By checking these two things at least once a year will help with getting the full life out of ones water heater, as well as making it as energy efficient as possible.

Enjoy!

10 Minute Water Heater Maintenance

Explore more…
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Added by Phil Luther on February 25, 2014 at 10:54am — No Comments

Can you trust your Load Calc Software?

Attention Wrightsoft Users!

  Have you ever completed a load calculation and it just seems like it was short of what you had expected?  Particularly when you are first starting out with a tool, contractors can make mistakes. After all, we tend to learn "the hard way", right?  In an effort to make software work, the companies tend to start with some default values that require adjustment.  For instance, most have the duct system in…

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Added by Christopher Morin on February 18, 2014 at 12:24pm — 7 Comments

Win a Free PMP Certification Course

Now through February 28, 2014, former Everblue students have the opportunity to win a free seat to our Project Management training. This course prepares students to earn Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification!

To participate, all you have to do is submit a video discussing your experience in your last Everblue course - it's as easy as that! Full contest instructions can be found here:…

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Added by Everblue on February 18, 2014 at 11:23am — No Comments

Water Heater Maintenance Tips

I wanted to share an infographic I put together on the importance of water heater safety and the maintenance tasks most homeowners should be able to do to monitor their water heaters. Enjoy!…

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Added by Phil Luther on February 17, 2014 at 8:38pm — No Comments

Help Rebuild Haiti and Get Profiled on Greenspiration Home!

Trish Holder

It’s been a chilly, uncharacteristically snowy winter here in North Carolina.  I have the luxury being able to sit in my warm “green” home and enjoy the beauty of these wintry transformations.

For my family and me, Mother Nature’s little surprises aren’t much more than…

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Added by Trish Holder on February 15, 2014 at 9:35am — No Comments

A Valentine's Day Lesson

 Here is the offending thermostat. Check out the mercury switch under the dial! Thank goodness we don't make them the way we used to…

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Added by Jim Gunshinan on February 14, 2014 at 2:23pm — 26 Comments

Connecticut HomeOwners Start Saving With These Programs From EnergizeCT.

EnergizeCt.com is the go to place for Connecticut residents, businesses, nonprofits, communities, government & municipalities for information about programs available in saving and reducing energy costs.

The Residential section has a whole page on simple smart ways to start saving on your energy costs with easy to…

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Added by David Popoff Ct on February 11, 2014 at 3:00pm — No Comments

Do you make this mistake on Maintenance?

     Cleaning the condenser coil.  This has always been the number one task that Service Technicians avoid at all costs when maintaining residential equipment.  Maybe it is the nature of the fast paced business when the weather gets hot?  Certainly could not be the lack of water to rinse the coil as there is almost always is a water spigot on either side of the home.  I cannot figure out why,  and this may be one of the largest aspects of seasonal maintenance that impacts the efficiency of…

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Added by Christopher Morin on February 7, 2014 at 1:24pm — 1 Comment

Solar and wind have a new best friend - Liquid Metal Batteries

As reliable energy sources, solar and wind once had a couple of similar problems – darkness all night and the proverbial calm before the storm, respectively. On the bright side, though, when these natural forces become our power sources, then the heat and the light are free -…
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Added by Joseph Lamy on February 3, 2014 at 7:00pm — 1 Comment

4 Things a Quality Contractor Would Not Say

1. If you sign today, I will take $X thousand off!

This is a sales tactic often taken by a used car salesman. A Quality HVAC Contractor will price their installation with confidence, after finding a solution to fit the needs of the customer, and correctly sizing such equipment. I have no problem with "ballpark" numbers over the phone, as this can help sift through customers that are not interested in quality, so contractors do not waste time on what tends to be free…

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Added by Christopher Morin on February 1, 2014 at 11:00am — No Comments

Let's Hear It for People Who Sweat and Get Dirty!



I worked as a janitor at St. Camillus elementary school after school and in the summers when I was in high school. I enjoyed the camaraderie with the other high school kids I worked with, and the crusty Dutch man who was our boss. We cleaned every afternoon in the school year and on weekends, and then painted, cut the grass, and did maintenance on the heating system and other equipment in the summer. We took pride in our work, but we also had fun—once in a while playing a game…

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Added by Jim Gunshinan on January 30, 2014 at 2:20pm — 12 Comments

Claim Tax Credits for Home Energy Efficiency Improvements Done in 2013

If you completed certain eligible energy efficiency improvements last year, you may qualify for credit when you file your 2013 taxes this year.

Remember, though, improvements must have been installed in 2013, not just purchased, and generally, claims can only be made on your primary residence.

Eligible measures may include doors, windows, and…

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Added by Melissa Ulbricht on January 23, 2014 at 11:04am — No Comments

Is the Nest Learning Thermostat Disruptive Technology?

There’s my thermostat now, a squared-off plain looking fellow named White Rogers. He hangs over my shoulder and mocks me three or four times a day for not being smart enough, or responsible enough, to program him. "Hey! I’m BUSY HERE, TRYING TO TRANSFORM THE MARKET FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY, and you, Mr. White Rogers, are a daily pain in my side. I can’t read you. You don’t even know what time it is, but I do, it's time you get dumped! I’m going over to the Apple store to pick up my own personal…

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Added by Brian Brainerd on January 22, 2014 at 9:21am — 6 Comments

Apply Now to Serve on a Multifamily Certification Scheme Committee

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is currently seeking enthusiastic multifamily industry practitioners with the experience and vision to help define and promote advanced professional certifications for Multifamily Quality Control Inspectors and Multifamily Retrofit Project Managers in the home performance industry.

Individuals who are interested in serving on a multifamily certification scheme committee are invited to submit their credentials via an …

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Added by Steve Lommele on January 17, 2014 at 2:00pm — No Comments

New RESNET Requirements

On December 4, 2013, the RESNET Board adopted several proposed amendments that went into effect on January 4, 2014. These amendments changed the requirements for becoming a certified RESNET HERS Rater. Old requirements for becoming a Rater included passing the National Rater Core Exam, completing two probationary ratings during classroom training, and agreeing to the Quality Assurance (QA) Process with a Quality Assurance Provider, a process that includes completing three probationary…

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Added by Everblue on January 14, 2014 at 12:30am — No Comments

The Basics: Superheat

Vital to the operation of the refrigeration cycle, superheat must be maintained and stable to protect the compressor.  We all know that the heart of the system cannot compress liquid (slug) without bad things happening.  This would represent low/no superheat.  But, did you know high superheat can cause valve and compressor problems as well?  No matter the reason for attaching your gauges to the system, you must check the superheat, in the air-conditioning cycle.…

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Added by Christopher Morin on January 10, 2014 at 12:03pm — 3 Comments

Getting Out the Message on Home MPG

We've created a blog post at AlabamaWISE.com comparing home energy efficiency to auto energy efficiency over time, using photos to help people visualize the prevailing technology when homes were built: http://www.alabamawise.org/whats-your-home-mpg-rating/

Added by Brian Brainerd on January 8, 2014 at 3:48pm — 2 Comments

5 Ways the PowerSaver Grant is Changing Energy Efficient Remodeling

If you haven't heard of the PowerSaver Grant, you're in for a treat. This bonus to the FHA 203k renovation loan is meant to help home buyers - or homeowners who want to refinance and remodel - go green, save green and get green. Yes, the cliches flow freely, don't they? 

With the PowerSaver Grant,…

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Added by Dan Moyle on January 8, 2014 at 9:11am — 1 Comment

How Change Happens in Home Performance

I was reviewing an article in Home Energy by Steve Mann that came out in the January/February issue (“DOE’s Challenge Home,” p. 6). He wrote on the latest iteration of DOE’s Challenge Home Program. Steve points out, in his usual insightful and articulate way, what he sees as the strengths and weakness of this program. I hope you’ve read it, or will read it. Send us your comments by email, or on the Home Energy website.

Reading Steve’s article made me think, “Wow, do…

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Added by Jim Gunshinan on January 6, 2014 at 3:00pm — 8 Comments

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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.

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Hal Skinner replied to Hal Skinner's discussion Any success getting landlords to energy upgrade a single family rental unit?
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Programmable tstat for electric baseboard?

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