The Latest from the Energy Vanguard Blog
Posted by Allison Bailes on December 5, 2013
A new study from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) makes a bold claim that increasing ventilation rates can cut the number of student absences related to illness. The lead author on the paper, Mark Mendell, is quoted by LBNL's News Center as saying, "Our overall findings suggest that, if...
8 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on November 26, 2013
I spoke at Serenbe,† a beautiful green community southwest of Atlanta, this weekend and got a chance to visit a net zero energy home while there. Built by Luis Imery, one of the home energy raters we're a HERS provider for, the home has garnered quite a bit of recognition. In fact, they recently...
11 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on November 21, 2013
I was searching the Interwebs for data on what percentage of buildings are designed by architects this week when I came across the Home Design Trends Survey from the American Institute of Architects (AIA). (If you can point me toward some good sources for my original question, please do.) The...
13 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on November 4, 2013
I get a lot of questions from people asking how they should go about fixing their homes. Sometimes it's specific (What's the best way to insulate my kneewalls?), and sometimes it's a hands up in the air, With all these problems, where do I start? I'll focus on the latter today and let Albert...
11 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on October 9, 2013
If you're designing a ventilation system, first you have to determine how much air the house needs. You can use ASHRAE 62.2 or the new BSC-01 for that task. Then you have to decide what type of ventilation system to use: positive pressure, negative pressure, or balanced. In many green homes, the...
12 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on September 16, 2013
If you have a home with a crawl space—or are building or buying one—you have several options on what to do with that particular foundation type. Most crawl spaces are vented to the outdoors, but over the past decade, encapsulating the crawl space (as shown below) has gained favor among builders of...
53 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on August 21, 2013
Let me tell you a little story about the day that Jeffrey went to test several Habitat for Humanity houses that are going for certification in the ENERGY STAR new homes program (the one in the photo here was not one of them). This was a couple of weeks ago, but I wrote down the numbers he told me...
33 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on August 13, 2013
Last week, Joe Lstiburek gave the fifth annual twitterview† from his crawl space. (When he gets back from sailing this week, Peter Troast of Energy Circle has promised to publish the transcript.) One of the pearls of wisdom dispensed by Joe was that, "Passive House is the only place where real...
31 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on August 5, 2013
The great ventilation debate of 2013 roars on. Last month, I wrote about Building Science Corporation's residential ventilation standard for new homes, to be released officially at Building Science Summer Camp this week, and then followed that up with an interview with Dr. Joseph Lstiburek. To...
14 Comments | Read/write comments
Posted by Allison Bailes on July 30, 2013
Overall, the state of the construction industry is improving. A lot of home builders and remodelers are learning, either out of interest or coercion, about building science and how to apply it to their work.
6 Comments | Read/write comments