Featured Blog Posts (513)

Oodles of Acronyms & Initials for Home Energy Pros

Acronyms and initials (let's call that AI, for short, not to be confused with the other AI, which stands for artificial intelligence, or AIA, which stands for…

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Added by Allison A. Bailes III on May 13, 2013 at 6:54am — 1 Comment

Robert Shiller Says Retrofits Are Never Worth It!

His economic truth about homeownership:

By contrast, real home prices should decline with time, except to the extent that households shell out some money and plow back some of their incomes into maintenance and improvements, because homes wear out and go out of style.

"Here is a harsh truth about homeownership: Over the long haul, it’s hard for homes to compete with the stock market in real…

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Added by Tom Delconte on May 3, 2013 at 5:00am — 9 Comments

Behavior and Usability: At the Interface of Human-Building Interaction

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



Of course, behaviorism works. So does torture. Give me…

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Added by Lester Shen on April 25, 2013 at 6:00am — 1 Comment

Good Drainage Planes stop Capillary Action

We use drainage gaps or planes in wall systems to stop water from entering the building shell and causing deterioration or mould. This air gap does two things if wide enough; it prevents water’s surface tension from staying or even climbing up the wall and the gap also disperses the forces of wind driven rain or solar vapour drive. Let’s look at…

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Added by Greg Labbe on April 22, 2013 at 11:00am — No Comments

The Future of Home Performance is Wrapped in Cheese—Q&A with Dave Robinson

Dave Robinson, a principal of GreenEarthEquities, is a man in this industry that needs little introduction. If you didn’t see him at last year’s ACI event accepting the Tony Woods Award, you may have seen him teaching a class, serving as the former president of the California Building Performance Association, or performing deep energy retrofits on…

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Added by Macie Melendez on April 19, 2013 at 1:29pm — 4 Comments

Solar Energy + Energy Efficiency – time to sing the Duet?

Energy Efficiency + Solar Energy work in conjunction allowing you to SAVE ENERGY

Solar Energy + Energy Efficiency Services – to DO or NOT to DO – is no more a Shakespearean dilemma!

The SMB solar installer finds himself in a challenging spot today

  • Profitability hurts, some operators are working on a…
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Added by Bijou Lulla on April 12, 2013 at 12:12am — 3 Comments

What is the Consumer Attitude towards Energy Efficiency Products & Services

Much has been written in recent times on consumer attitudes towards investing in energy efficiency retrofits, a recent GTM article http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Can-Home-Energy-Efficiency-Gain-Traction?utm_source=SmartGrid&utm_medium=Headline&utm_campaign=GTMDaily does hit the nail on the…

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Added by Bijou Lulla on April 13, 2013 at 12:25am — 3 Comments

0.72 ach50 Before Drywall - This Home is already 90% Tighter than Energy Code

Before drywall was installed, I tested the infiltration (air leakage) at the Proud Green Home (PGH) at Serenbe,…

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Added by Chris Laumer-Giddens on April 15, 2013 at 7:30am — 1 Comment

The Energy Challenge'D: Crowdsourcing for Energy Efficiency

Shriver-E_HR_.jpg CEE understands that efficient technologies alone will not save energy. Consumer behavior plays a role in energy consumption, so our program design incorporates use strategies from behavioral psychology. We also like to use social media and other communication channels to educate about energy! In this post, Minnesota Energy Challenge Coordinator …

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Added by Anna Jursik on April 15, 2013 at 7:35am — No Comments

CO in Attached Garages

On two separate Quality Assurance site visits in the past two weeks I've detected elevated levels of Carbon Monoxide (CO) coming from attached garages. I was a bit surprised at this since neither garage contained a car - let alone any active source of combustion. So I did some digging and came up with this great resource from Iowa State on the topic. From my reading of…

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Added by Nick Helmholdt on April 15, 2013 at 12:14pm — 2 Comments

Learning Thermostat - a huge impact on Energy Savings

Ok, I have had a couple programmable thermostats in the past... But, once again about 11 months ago I was doing my weekly (sometimes daily) stroll through the neighborhood 'big-box' home improvement store and back in the back past the garden section there is this little…

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Added by Dale Stephens on March 28, 2013 at 6:30am — 32 Comments

Why do we have Sizing Limits?

There are not as many contractors out there as you would expect that are current with the most recent, and always updating, residential building code.  Particularly when it comes to the sizing limitations for HVAC equipment, most contractors consider this minimum requirement by law nothing more than a nuisance.  There is nothing more frustrating to see in a quality control role than a system that was sold, sized, and installed prior to the start of the system design process.  Completing a…

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Added by Christopher Morin on March 31, 2013 at 11:07am — 10 Comments

Do No Harm

Before BPI Certification, this problem probably would not have been noticed or understood. The home occupants were a 96 year old woman and her elderly & disabled son.…

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Added by Guy DuBois on March 13, 2013 at 2:10pm — 2 Comments

Opportunity to Participate in Multifamily Housing Job Task Analyses

The announcement below highlights a very exciting opportunity in the multifamily housing industry. We still have a need for more Multifamily Building Operator applicants. Specifically, we are seeking individuals who have experience with multifamily buildings in the following capacities:

  • Oversight and management of third-party contractors for equipment maintenance, repair, and installation
  • Tenant engagement through apartment inspections and management of…
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Added by Steve Lommele on March 19, 2013 at 8:00am — No Comments

Electric Generators: Disaster Preparedness or Preparing a Disaster?

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

 

Some energy efficiency improvements can create safety concerns, so our…

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Added by Lester Shen on March 25, 2013 at 9:00am — 3 Comments

LED Lighting, 6-month update

Background

Ok, back in November 2012 I stumbled into my local 'big-box' home improvement store with an extra $1,000 USD to burn and without any research or pre-planning I purchased 35 LED bulbs to replace my incandescent and CFL bulbs. I was way tired of continually replacing a couple CFLs time and time again and the 25,000-50,000 hours of lifetime sparked my interest and put a $1K hole in my wallet. At a burn time average of 3-hours per day that is 22-45 years of…

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Added by Dale Stephens on March 26, 2013 at 7:30am — 23 Comments

Installing Ducted Mini-Splits and ERV in Modern High Performance Home

Things are really moving along on the Proud Green…

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Added by Chris Laumer-Giddens on March 26, 2013 at 11:18am — 15 Comments

Designing A Perfect Residential Wall - Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia has a reputation for getting pretty darn hot, but it can also get pretty dang cold (No snickering from you Northerners, please!). Believe it or not, Atlantans use more energy to heat their homes than they do to cool them. The design temperature set by …

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Added by Chris Laumer-Giddens on March 6, 2013 at 11:30am — No Comments

How the Sequester will Impact the Home Energy Efficiency Industry



By Johnny Ritzo

Originally Posted at Efficiency Law Review

Introduction

There has been considerable speculation about how the mandatory budget cuts, known as the sequester, will impact key government functions beginning March 1, 2013.  Primary concern has focused…

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Added by Johnny Ritzo on February 28, 2013 at 9:51am — 1 Comment

Home Energy and the Fracking Dividend

Most of us will agree that it’s technically feasible to build homes that consume dramatically less energy than today’s typical home. And in most locations we can build a home that draws net zero energy from the utility. But it’s economics that makes us hesitate. Specifically, it’s the value of those energy savings. Can the additional investment be offset by anticipated reductions in energy costs? It’s the same thing for retrofits of existing homes: Do the lower energy bills justify the…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on March 1, 2013 at 12:00pm — 5 Comments

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