What it's really like to buy, sell and market a green home.
Our efforts to improve energy efficiency in the United States might be faltering.
Save money and energy at home by choosing energy-efficient products whenever you purchase home appliances or computers and other electronics.
More than the electricity needed to run these machines, the “rinse hold” hot water setting that many households use is the biggest energy drain associated with dishwashers – as much as 80 percent of the energy your dishwasher uses goes to heat water.
Heating water is the highest drain that laundry machines and dishwashers have on your bill. Onaverage, water heating accounts for 18 percent of your energy bill.
If someone told you that you were losing money just by sitting in your home, you would probably want to do whatever you could to change that. Well the reality is that your home is using up energy regularly, and there is a huge chunk of that energy that you do not even need. Luckily, we live in a time when technology is constantly coming up with ways to fix problems such as these. Here are some of the ways that technology can help to save the environment, as well as your wallet.
The devil is in the details in a net zero energy home. Every single step in the design and construction of a home requires efforts to ensure airtightness. The top of the foundation is one detail that deserves special attention.
To ensure an airtight design, be sure to level and finish the top of the concrete wall and use sill seal below your bottom plates.
Once the ICFs are in place and the walls are very well reinforced, it is time to pour concrete. This blog illustrates the process in words and photos.
This blog describes some of the details involved in building with insulating concrete forms, notably window and door buck details that you need to take into account
Additional reinforcement is required around the garage door opening.
Scaffolding is required to access the walls to pour the concrete. Scaffolding also helps support the walls.
ICF walls must be carefully braced to prevent blowout.
ICFs are not the most environmentally friendly green building product, but result in super energy efficient home, and offer many other benefits, that offset their origin from petrochemicals.
Insulating concrete forms are an excellent choice for foundations for passive solar, net zero energy homes. They create a highly insulated, air-tight foundation, so essential for extremely high energy performance.
Don't forget to budget in the cost of deeper excavation and add $1000 to $2000 as a budget contingecy in case you run into bedrock.
Be sure to install under-the-footing conduit to run electrical and water pipes, including sewer. I like to run pipes and wire under the foot to prevent penetrating the band joist or the foundation to create a more airtight, water tight home.
Insulation under the slab -- and lots of it -- is vital for the performance of a net zero energy home. So is the footprint. You can make the most of passive solar by creating a longer, narrower house in which each room is heated by the sun.
Creating a net zero energy home requires that we eliminate all thermal bridging loss -- heat movement into and out of a building. All this starts in the basement.
To build a net zero energy home, you'll need to design for passive gain. That requires a shallower footprint to ensure that the low-angled winter sun can enter and heat each room.
In this blog, I describe two of the first and most important design considerations -- the length and depth of the home and the layout of rooms for optimum passive solar gain.
GO Home, built by architecture and construction firm G•O Logic LLC, received the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) 2011 LEED for Homes Project of the Year Award.
Custom Curve is the first glass window system with a structurally engineered framework that follows the curved wall of the yurt.
NXP's wifi light bulb would allow homeowners to turn LED and compact fluorescent lights on and off from anywhere, using any Internet-enabled device. Some say it's the first step toward building "smart" computer-controlled homes. Do we need this?
Live in a dome home in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week!
For less than the cost of an SUV, a Michigan couple rehabbed their historic home to include solar panels and a geothermal system. The 110-year-old house now produces more energy than it needs.
Dan and Karen Cripes made a few big upfront investments--including solar panels and a geothermal system--when they built their home in Round Rock, Texas. Now they're reaping the rewards with nearly nonexistent utility bills and a home they love.
Tumbleweed Tiny House Company founder Jay Shafer teaches Americans how to build efficient homes of less than 1,000 square feet.
Information about energy-efficient washing machines and cellular window shades. These energy-efficient appliances and window shades will please environmentally conscious consumers.
The Home Star Energy Retrofit Act of 2010, which passed the House on May 5, would provide $6 billion in rebates to homeowners who make energy-efficient upgrades to their homes.
President Obama revealed plans for his new Home Star Program, also known as Cash for Caulkers, which will offer rebates for energy-efficient home renovations such as replacing windows, adding insulation and sealing ducts.
A National Association of Home Builders report and a Better Homes and Gardens survey find that builders and homeowners are moving toward smaller, more energy-efficient homes.