tag: energy efficiency


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Ductless Minisplits for DIYers

Ductless Minisplits for DIYers

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An air-source heat pump powers this air-conditioning and heating unit designed for installation by homeowners.

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Why You Should Heat Your Home with an  Air-Source Heat Pump

Why You Should Heat Your Home with an Air-Source Heat Pump

In a presentation at NESEA's 2014 BuildingEnergy conference, Rick Nortz from Mitsubishi Electric explains why modern air-source heat pumps are poised to become the fastest growing segment of the US HVAC industry

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Cheap Trick - Recessed Dryer Box Model 425 Review

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If you've ever installed a clothes dryer you know the vent at the back is in danger of being choked & pinched the moment you push the unit into place. This little $30 part is worth it's weight in gold!

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How to Use Spray Foam to Meet New Energy Codes in Warm Climates

How to Use Spray Foam to Meet New Energy Codes in Warm Climates

As a builder in the hot and humid South, I regularly use spray foam in my houses. Spray foam makes it much easier to encapsulate my attic (where most HVAC systems in Texas live) so that my ducts are inside the thermal envelope.

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Garage AC - Wrong Way & Right Way

Garage AC - Wrong Way & Right Way

Who wouldn't love their garage to be Air Conditioned? In this video I'll show you two methods to accomplish that cool garage.

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The Lexus HVAC system - Variable Refrigerant Flow Technology

The "Lexus" HVAC system - Variable Refrigerant Flow Technology

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Air Conditioners are sized for the Hottest day of the year. This results in rather uncomfortable AC about 70% of the time, as well as electric bills that are needlessly high. Enter Variable Refrigerant Flow Technology. This allows your AC to run at any capacity from 15% up to 100%. Join me for a system overview

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Southern HVAC Best Practice Videos

Southern HVAC Best Practice Videos

This is my collection of my 9 best HVAC related videos. Most will be relevant no matter your climate but many speak specifically to best practice for the Southern US.

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Ventilation Strategies for Houses in the Hot-Humid South: Good/Better/Best

Ventilation Strategies for Houses in the Hot-Humid South: Good/Better/Best

Build tight, ventilate right. I learned that from building science guru Mark LaLiberte. But what is the right way to ventilate a house in Texas (or anywhere in the hot/humid South)? I'll give you my recommendations for three strategies.

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Indoor-Air Quality and Ventilation for Homes in Hot-Humid Climates

Indoor-Air Quality and Ventilation for Homes in Hot-Humid Climates

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The weather in the Southern United States poses a unique challenge to the issues of ventilation and indoor-air quality. Here are my opinions and suggestions on how to address these issues if you are building or remodeling in the South.

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Nest Review - Builder Perspective

Nest Review - Builder Perspective

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The Nest thermostat has a ton of buzz, but is it worth the price? In this review you'll hear my perspective as a builder.

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High-Performance Homes Dos & Donts: Mark LaLiberte Seminar Notes

High-Performance Homes Dos & Don'ts: Mark LaLiberte Seminar Notes

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Mark LaLiberte is an amazing building-science teacher. Read my blogging notes from his seminar titled "Building High-Performance Homes Dos & Don'ts," which I attended in Austin, Texas. Remember that this is focused on Texas construction, but there is plenty to learn here for anyone in the U.S.

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Bargain ERV for Hot Climates - Panasonics Whisper Comfort Review

Bargain ERV for Hot Climates - Panasonic's Whisper Comfort Review

In our Hot Humid Texas climate an ERV does a great job of bringing in Fresh Air but rejecting the humidity (Energy) that typically comes with that air. Panasonic's bargain priced ERV is a great choice for fresh air in our climate.

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Texas Deep-Energy Retrofit Remodel

Texas Deep-Energy Retrofit Remodel

When you hear about a deep energy retrofit project most people think of the snowy North Eastern US. I can tell you that the strategy for a Northern remodel with energy efficiency in mind is very different that our strategy for Hot/Humid Texas. In this video I'll show you 6 things we are doing to making a dramatic difference in this 1950's slab on grade house's energy bills.

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Choosing Between an Air-Source and Ground-Source Heat Pump

Choosing Between an Air-Source and Ground-Source Heat Pump

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A homeowner planning a tight, well-insulated house is grappling with a key decision: whether to choose an air-source or ground-source heat pump for heating and cooling. What's the best call?

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Smart Design Advice for Hot & Humid Climates (i.e. The South)

Smart Design Advice for Hot & Humid Climates (i.e. The South)

Architect Peter Pfeiffer talks about how to utilize smart design for a house in a hot climate zone. His green building advice is practical and following his advice will result in a house that's well designed for the rigors of a hot climate. If you want a comfortable, efficient, durable house and you live in the South then this video will give you tons to think about.

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DOEs Marketing Push for Aeroseal

DOE's Marketing Push for Aeroseal

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Lawrence Berkeley National Lab touts the technology's track record for sealing leaks in duct systems and improving energy efficiency

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Best Attic for Hot/Humid Climates

Best Attic for Hot/Humid Climates

Most houses in Hot/Humid climates don't have basements so that means that most ductwork in Southern house runs through super hot attic spaces. In this video I'll show you a rather civilized attic space that really makes for a comfortable & efficient house!

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Cant We Build Simple, Low-Tech Homes and Still Be Comfortable?

Can't We Build Simple, Low-Tech Homes and Still Be Comfortable?

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A Massachusetts homeowner wonders how a green design might look for someone who likes to keep the windows open and the heat turned down

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The Downside of Running a Dehumidifier

The Downside of Running a Dehumidifier

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In a superinsulated house, appliances generate heat that is slow to dissipate

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Where to Spend Your Money: Superinsulation or a High-Tech Heating System?

Where to Spend Your Money: Superinsulation or a High-Tech Heating System?

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What's the best plan: investing in high-quality windows and insulation, or a high-efficiency heating system?

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