Featured Blog Posts (748)

Is the Perfect Wall Realistic?

Wrong question. The right question is what can we do to help builders design and construct more perfect walls without losing their shirts? At Building America, we have an idea for a tool to do this.

Since 1995, Building America Program experts have developed more than 100 innovations that…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on July 18, 2016 at 5:35pm — No Comments

Building with Rocks, Rocks. Check out the Drying Potential

Building with Rocks, Rocks! Check out the Drying Potential.

Check this out! This 24" x 48" x 2" thick piece of rigid stone wool insulation was left out overnight (on purpose) on the High Performance Tiny House project site, to see how it handles a deluge of rain, which we knew was coming. One of the many …

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Added by Chris Laumer-Giddens on July 26, 2016 at 6:30am — No Comments

Looking Back and Looking Forward: Home Energy Pros at 5 and 5000

Over the past five years, the Home Energy Pros social network has grown from a twinkle in our eyes to a vibrant community of 5000 doers and shakers in the home performance world. The membership represents a rich cross-section of participants in the home energy performance movement, including:

  • Energy auditors
  • Building contractors
  • Insulation contractors
  • HVAC contractors
  • Home inspectors
  • Appraisers
  • Real Estate…
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Added by Evan Mills on July 25, 2016 at 1:34pm — No Comments

Boosting Insulation Can Reduce Energy Use, Pollution

Those of us working within the building industry or energy efficiency space in existing homes know that boosting insulation levels can reduce energy use, cut consumer costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Yet, there’s been a modest amount of data to quantify the extent of the benefits—particularly at the state level. Until now.

New …

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on July 18, 2016 at 5:32pm — No Comments

Indoor Air - How do you measure if it is Healthy?

Indoor Air - How do you measure if it is Healthy? New on my Blog! This post was made to respond to my friend Nate Adams question of 'Why?' when I tweeted that I was disappointed at…

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Added by John Nicholas on June 20, 2016 at 11:09am — 5 Comments

Elevate Energy Mythbusters: Windows & Attics Edition

This blog post is guest written by former staff member Eric Keeley.

Great enthusiasm for home energy efficiency is often matched with misconceptions.  Let’s explore a bit and figure out the difference between what we perceive, believe, and what we know to be true.

Our Perception

Windows: We see through them every day and curse the drafts coming through and around them. We are certain that old windows are the main culprit behind why we spend so much…

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Added by Amber Vignieri on June 24, 2016 at 1:00pm — 4 Comments

Gas vs Induction Cooking Energy Comparison

Comparison Between LP Gas Range and Induction Burner

Admittedly, this is a simple and very limited analysis, but it does offer some useful information. I wrote about induction cooking 2 years ago, the cost has since come down enough that I recently bought a single coil, counter-top unit, and after a week of use, the numbers are in.

As a…

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Added by Paul Scheckel on June 14, 2016 at 9:10am — 22 Comments

Addison Talks with BUILDER Magazine: Why Closed Crawlspaces Make Sense

BUILDER Magazine recently published “Five Alternative Construction Methods,” a series of articles looking at “building methods that are gaining traction because they save time, money, and headaches — or all of the above — while producing better results and more energy savings.”

The story titled “…

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Added by Michelle Usher on June 10, 2016 at 9:52am — 2 Comments

What is DWHR?

What is Drain Water Heat Recovery?

Answer this...when you take a hot shower, what happens once that HOT water goes down the drain and how do I reuse the energy? That is Drain Water Heat Recovery!

A "DWHR" can capture waste heat energy and be used to heat NEW incoming water, saving money & energy, as well as the life of your hot water tank. It also works well with Geothermal, Solar and Tankless (on demand) Water Heaters.

In residential and commercial applications, all the…

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Added by Rick Causo on May 11, 2016 at 5:13pm — 4 Comments

11 Flavors of Sustainable Housing

Keeping track of what's going on in the world of low-impact, sustainable housing is, and was, a challenge.

We did a study for CMHC back in the early 00's looking for great examples for a series of case studies that required collecting a ton of info on many projects. CMHC published only 3 of 24 case studies, but…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on June 13, 2016 at 11:00am — 2 Comments

Converging Trends

Environmental Leader recently described legal challenges faced by a business coalition supporting the “Clean Power Plan.” Aside from the Supreme Court’s intervention, the coalition “is fighting more than …

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on June 6, 2016 at 1:18pm — 1 Comment

My Apartment in Tokyo

Every time I visit Japan I learn something new, and my most recent trip was no exception. This time I stayed in an apartment, which exposed me to several new energy-related devices. First, what’s this gadget attached to the wall? (See photo below.)

Reading the Japanese isn’t terribly informative, because the label just says it’s a “peak alarm unit.” The apartment’s owner pays the…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on June 2, 2016 at 12:56pm — 3 Comments

Relay Network Targets Multifamily Housing Upgrades Nationwide

Affordable apartment buildings are home to more than 10 million American households, making them a backbone of U.S. housing stock. They also waste a lot of energy.

In fact, energy efficiency measures are far less likely to be found in multifamily buildings than any other type of housing, according to a 2011 report by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Several hurdles have stalled upgrades: building owners lack access to capital, utility-run efficiency…

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Added by Amber Vignieri on May 27, 2016 at 2:12pm — No Comments

Home Energy Efficiency Round-Up, May Special Alert--Efficiency Financing, Elevate SunShot Awardee

Solar Ready with STEP



In an effort to…

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Added by Amber Vignieri on May 25, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

My Favorite Announcement of the Year

Each year, Habitat X engages in a search for up-and-coming young professionals in the home performance industry. We take applications from individuals who are less than 40 years old, and we ask them to iterate a focused vision of an industry future that we think is far-reaching but plausible. We then choose one person from among these applicants who is poised to make important…

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Added by Chris Dorsi on May 24, 2016 at 10:26pm — 1 Comment

The “Biggest Loser:” Michigan Multifamily Building Upgraded by Elevate Energy and Partners Wins 2015 MI Battle of the Buildings

A 15 year-old affordable housing development in downtown Ionia, Michigan won the 2015 Michigan Battle of the Buildings energy saving competition for apartments.  Building upgrades and subsequent systems optimization to the 39-unit complex were completed in April 2015. Through March 2016, these upgrades have cut gas…

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Added by Amber Vignieri on April 29, 2016 at 11:37am — No Comments

Home Energy Efficiency Round-Up, May--It Can Be Easy Being Green

The Green Premium: A Meta-Analysis

A new…

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Added by Amber Vignieri on May 3, 2016 at 10:44am — 1 Comment

What’s the difference between VRV and VRF?

Many people who ask this question, mistakenly interpret it as 2 different HVAC technologies. Actually, those are two different terms for the same type of HVAC technology. Based on Inverter technology compressors, the first VRV HVAC …

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Added by Igor Mitbarg on May 8, 2016 at 9:10am — No Comments

Building Rainwater Harvesting Systems

Rainwater harvesting is a system which requires a two-step process. The two major events in rainwater harvesting are catchment and storage. The first hurdle is developing an adequate method of collection. Once the rain is collected, a proper and large storage system is required. The complexity and size can vary dramatically. The simplest methods involve the rerouting of gutters into an above ground rain barrel up to a complex system of catchment dishes, filters, pumps, ponds and…

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Added by GBRI on March 24, 2016 at 3:30am — No Comments

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