The Latest from the Energy Vanguard Blog

HERS rater training scam
Posted by Allison Bailes on July 12, 2010
I did a search the other day on the term “HERS rater test scam” because I got to thinking about a forum I’d run across a while back. Someone who took the HERS rater class was ranting about RESNET and the whole HERS rater training industry being a scam.
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window condensation, high dew point, moisture problems
Posted by Allison Bailes on July 9, 2010
I like to go to Waffle House. Over the past few years, it seems, I've gone so often that I even order my breakfast in their special code: "Triple scramble wheat plate," which translates to three scrambled eggs, whole wheat toast, and hash browns.
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Why won't the HVAC industry do things right?
Posted by Allison Bailes on July 8, 2010
Do you know how most HVAC contractors charge for installing HVAC systems, especially in the case of new home construction? By the ton of installed air conditioning capacity. If you've read any of my previous articles about Manual J and oversized air conditioners, you probably see where I'm going...
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HERS rater class with Allison Bailes, teaching Duct Blaster
Posted by Allison Bailes on July 2, 2010
Yesterday was an exciting day at Energy Vanguard. Chris and I worked really hard in May to finish up and submit our application for Energy Vanguard to become a HERS rater training provider, and yesterday the answer arrived. RESNET informed us that we got the accreditation we sought and could begin...
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Posted by EV Staff on July 1, 2010
"Making something beautiful is one of the most sustainable things you can do." - Sarah Susanka, Author of The Not So Big House.
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Condensation forms on surfaces that are below the dew point temperature, even when the air conditioner is working properly.
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 30, 2010
It's a pretty safe bet that the vast majority of air conditioners are oversized. ACCA developed its Manual J protocol for heating and cooling load calculations to help HVAC contractors put in correctly sized equipment, but there are a couple of problems. First, most contractors don't do the load...
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Spray foam insulation is great for the building envelope.
Posted by Allison Bailes on June 29, 2010
Spray foam insulation is a great product. Homes insulated with it can be some of the most efficient and comfortable homes built. I've been in plenty of these homes and can tell you that when spray foam is installed properly, they outperform 99% of fiberglass batt-insulated, stick-built homes. (I...
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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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