The Latest from the Energy Vanguard Blog

Lumpy attic insulation, poor average R-value
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 28, 2010
My dissertation in grad school was called "Flat or Lumpy." (Of course, it had the requisite incomprehensibility in the subtitle, with words like 'heteroepitaxy.') Those two words in the title, which cut to the heart of what my surface physics research was all about, also describe a property of...
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ceiling fan, air leakage, comfort, energy conservation
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 25, 2010
Here's another item for the myths of energy conservation category: In most homes, ceiling fans do NOT save energy. It's not that they can't save energy; it's just that most people don't understand how to use them to do so, and the potential savings are pretty small.
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Green   modular homes aren't like this.
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 24, 2010
What pops into your mind when you hear the term 'modular home'? Cheap? Flimsy? Ugly? Trailer? Energy hog? Boxy? Cramped? Well, let me try to bring you up to speed in the field of modular, and especially green modular homes.
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A high performance home doesn't have to look weird.
Posted by EV Staff on June 23, 2010
Yesterday, I heard a law student tell a story about some advice she gave to her friend about a recent break up. Her friend was having trouble letting go, and instead of saying something simple like, "you need to move on," she recommended that her friend "mitigate the damages!" WHAT!?, her friend...
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Posted by Allison Bailes on June 21, 2010
Home Star, the program working its way through Congress, will be a boon to homeowners and will give a big boost to the home energy efficiency industry. Called variously the Home Star Energy Retrofit Act, Home Star Retrofit Rebate Program, Home Star Rebate Program, or Cash for Caulkers, it has...
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What's this HERS rating thing I keep hearing about?
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 16, 2010
My company is a HERS rating provider, and there are a lot of duties and responsibilities that go along with that. This morning, Chris and I are heading out for a three day trip to Hilton Head and Charleston, South Carolina to wrap up the certification process for four of our home energy raters....
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An oversized air conditioner can make it cold but doesn't dehumidify well.
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 14, 2010
It's been hot and muggy in Atlanta the past few days. Now I'm not your typical Atlantan who says that lightly. I grew up in Houston and south Louisiana and spent nine years in Florida, so I know hot and muggy. Overall, summers in Atlanta are pretty nice because of our elevation (~1000 feet), but we...
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Posted by EV Staff on June 11, 2010
Next month, for about three weeks, professional cyclists will ride 2,200 miles through the hills and towns of France competing for the title of Tour de France Champion. Only one will be crowned champ, but they won't have earned it on their own. They will have nine other cyclists working in front,...
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Louisiana bayou country
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 9, 2010
I was born and raised in the oil patch, getting my start in Houston and then moving to south Louisiana when I was 10 years old. Spending as much time as possible fishing, hunting, trawling, and hanging out in the marsh and on the water was the best part of my life in south Louisiana. I paddled...
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building science: spray foam on roofline
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 8, 2010
Over the past decade, I've immersed myself in the world of building science and green building. I've absorbed a lot of knowledge and have learned the even more important lesson of how to find answers to questions that arise in this field and how to keep abreast of what's new. Here, then, are my top...
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