The Latest from the Energy Vanguard Blog

Condensation on the insulation jacket of a duct running through a crawl space
Posted by Allison Bailes on February 14, 2017
Water vapor from the air condenses on air conditioning ducts in humid climates. It's as normal as poorly insulated bonus rooms making occupants uncomfortable or cigarettes causing lung cancer†. Condensation on ducts is most common in crawl spaces and basements, where the air is more likely to have...
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This heat recovery ventilator is inside the building enclosure
Posted by Allison Bailes on February 10, 2017
If you've been hanging around here for a while, you know I encourage architects and builders to find a way to get the ductwork and heating and cooling systems inside the conditioned space of a home. In cold climates, this usually happens without much argument. In hot and warm climates, we're not...
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hvac-air-handler-filter-blocked.jpg
Posted by Allison Bailes on October 14, 2016
There's really no end to the fun stuff you find when looking at furnace & air conditioner filters. Here are a few of my favorites for this Fall Friday.
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air-handler-ducts-inside-conditioned-space-1-mechanical-closet.jpg
Posted by Allison Bailes on September 7, 2016
There's a ton of new construction and remodeling going on in Atlanta. On a lot near where I live, a developer tore down the old house and is building two new ones. This weekend, I took the opportunity to check out their progress on the first one and saw the mechanical system roughed in on the first...
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disconnected duct unbalanced supply leakage
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 30, 2016
A lot of discoveries and research work over the past four decades have led to our current understanding of air leakage in buildings. I’ll mention a few here, but I want to focus on one: the MAD AIR paper by John Tooley and Neil Moyer. The full title of the paper was, Mechanical Air Distribution And...
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New home installation with sagging flex duct
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 23, 2016
Last month while I was in Austin, homebuilder extraordinaire Matt Risinger gave me a tour of some of his projects. Afterward I wrote about something I saw on his new home construction site that was a sign of a good duct installer. Today I bring you a few photos that are signs of a bad duct...
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interstitial-pressure-field-mad-air-leakage.jpg
Posted by Allison Bailes on May 25, 2016
The word "interstitial" comes up occasionally in building science discussions. I think I've heard it a couple of times at conferences just in the past month. That may be because Joe Lstiburek was there. He's the guy who used that word 127 times in his doctoral dissertation, Toward an Understanding...
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duct-fittings-pre-insulated-sealed-mastic.jpg
Posted by Allison Bailes on May 9, 2016
Matt Risinger is a home builder in Austin. He builds great houses and is also famous for his videos. He has over 26 thousand subscribers on his Youtube channel. I was in Austin last week for the inaugural Humid Climate Conference and had some extra time on Saturday morning. So I got a tour of a few...
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flex-duct-downspout-retrofit-stephen-morrison.jpg
Posted by Allison Bailes on February 24, 2016
When Stephen Morrison of MoreSun Custom Woodworking sent me the photo below, my reaction was, Wow! Just wow! This duct retrofit is absolutely stunning. It's an elegant display of creativity unhindered by knowledge. Can you see what they've done?
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package-unit-flex-duct-outdoors-hvac-hacks.jpg
Posted by Allison Bailes on February 3, 2016
I love me some good bad photos. You know, good photos of bad stuff. If you've been here a while, you've seen some of the doozies I've posted in the Energy Vanguard Blog. Take Stumpy, the duct amputee or Release the Kraken or the ice chest in the duct system or any of a number of building enclosure...
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