tag: green building


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Solar In the City

Solar In the City

A renovated Victorian becomes a self sustaining Zero energy home.

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How Quiet is a Mitsubishi VRF AC Compressor?

How Quiet is a Mitsubishi VRF AC Compressor?

Has a noisy AC Compressor outside a bedroom window ever bothered you? Mitsubishi claims to make the quietest AC Compressor on the market. Let's test and see if their claim is true!

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Revolutionary New HVAC Equipment - A Split Dehumidifier!

Revolutionary New HVAC Equipment - A Split Dehumidifier!

14 comments

I'd venture to guess that most houses in the Southern US aren't very comfortable. They are either too cold or too hot! The missing component in HVAC is Dehumidification. Ultra-Aire has a new Dehum that I think is a game changer.

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Cheap Trick - Recessed Dryer Box Model 425 Review

13 comments

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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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

3 comments

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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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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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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HVAC Ducting: Rigid Metal vs. Flex

HVAC Ducting: Rigid Metal vs. Flex

6 comments

In our Texas climate a well installed HVAC system is a must for a new home. I'm surprised by how few builders are using Rigid Metal ducting anymore. Come see how my crew uses both Rigid Metal & Flex for great air distribution in the homes I build.

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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?

3 comments

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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One view of the net-zero energy frontier

One view of the net-zero energy frontier

A white paper explores how builders, manufacturers, and government entities can develop the market for projects designed for net-zero-energy performance

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Building a radon-resistant home.

Building a radon-resistant home.

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What is deadly and might be lurking in your basement? No, not a Ninja (well probably not), in most cases it is Radon. And it is important to know what Radon is and how to ensure it isn't a threat to your household. From building to testing, I will share what I learned about Radon while building my house.

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A Passive House in Rhode Island

A Passive House in Rhode Island

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An ultra-efficient home in Rhode Island offers inspration for the rest of us

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How to Live Comfortably Off the Grid

How to Live Comfortably Off the Grid

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A builder in British Columbia will soon be building an off-the-grid house for an island couple. Although the house will be heated primarily with wood, it will still need a backup system, and he looks for advice on the best approach.

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