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Questions tagged [energy-efficiency]

Questions about ways to measure and improve the ability to get useful work out of devices that consume energy. This includes coal, oil and gas as well as electricity.

11
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5answers
2k views

Most cost effective thermostat setting: consistent temperature vs. lowest temperature possible

The problem: Our heating bills are about 25% higher than our average neighbors according to our bill, yet our temperature is always as low as we can stand it (mid 50's), we have excellent insulation ...
1
vote
0answers
53 views

Energy loss through bathtub drain

I noticed that there is significant heat loss at my bathtub drain. If I put my hand above the bathtub drain, I feel an icy draft. The plumbing is directly under the bathroom, in an unfinished ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Will coefficient of performance rise in the future for heat pumps?

I can see there are heat pumps with x > 4.1 SCOP, which is great! Q: But will this get better in the future? Ex. in 10 years? New type of heat-pumps? Or are there any psyhical limitations, that ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

How should I insulate my partially finished, currently uninsulated basement?

I am in Alabama, climate zone 3. Half of my basement is finished, well at least it has a dropped ceiling, wood panel walls, an air supply and return, but no insulation. There is an uninsulated ...
1
vote
2answers
39 views

Is there harm in using my mini-splits in conjunction with my hot-water baseboard heat?

My new house has a natural gas boiler with three zones of radiant baseboard heat (one per floor). It also has a mini-split system (again one head per floor). The mini-split was advertised as air ...
0
votes
1answer
21 views

Customizable boiler water load

I need a boiler to produce hot water for my bathroom. I wonder why boilers usually don't let you customize how much water they should contain. I only need to warm up 80 litres if there are guests in ...
0
votes
0answers
136 views

1 1/2 story upstairs bedroom very hot

So I just bought a house and discovered the upstairs was what felt like 5-10 degrees difference from the main level. I'll try and add pictures of the insulation below. It seems well done but for some ...
1
vote
0answers
51 views

What's the best method of insulating windows against solar heat?

(TL;DR at the end ;) ) I live in Western New York, and while it's pretty uncommon to reach temperatures over 95-100, it still gets pretty hot here, and we typically have 70-90% humidity on top of it. ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

Will a curtain across a doorway significantly reduce air flow?

I've got a stairway down to a basement that's wide open at the top and at the bottom. The basement gets pretty humid, so we run a dehumidifier down there, but the wide open entry undoubtedly makes the ...
0
votes
1answer
58 views

Efficiency of having 2 heat pumps in my house

I have a 2 story house and I want to replace our old window AC. I was initially thinking of replacing it by a single heat pump unit, but in order to get government funding, I would need to get one ...
5
votes
2answers
508 views

Reconciling high ceilings with New England cold weather

One particular problem with typical New England architecture is that the ceilings are ordinarily low because of cold temperatures and cost of heating. If a ceiling is high, the hot air from radiators ...
0
votes
1answer
672 views

Should vent directly above furnace be open or closed

There is a vent in the duct directly above my furnace. This is in the air out side, not the return duct. Is there a reason I should have this duct open? It was open when I bought the house a few ...
0
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4answers
1k views

Will adding a cool air return in the basement help with summer AC power usage?

Pretty much the title. I have a full basement. Part of it is unfinished and has the water heater, furnace, and washer / dryer. The other part (roughly 1/2 of the total space) is partially finished. It ...
0
votes
1answer
71 views

Why does the well pump continuously draw large current?

The pump is a submersible type around 100ft down. It is rated at 1.5 HP ~ 1.1 KW and is around 3 yes old. The manufacturer's spec sheet mentions a full load current of 9.2 A. 1.1KW/230 gives me a ...
1
vote
1answer
499 views

Have Gas Water Heater…Wondering If It Needs to be in a Closet

I received a "gift house" from my father-in-law a few years ago. A lot of the problems have been repaired over the past few years, but I have a major one that keeps kicking my butt. The previous ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

converting single pane windows to double pane

I have wooden, single-pane (1/8" glass), double-hung windows on my house which have held up well considering they are nearly 70 years old. But, I don't want to put a lot of money into the house and I'...
26
votes
13answers
4k views

Locating source of excessive energy use

Background Info: My house is all electric. Last month when I got my electric bill, I flipped. It was triple that of any month prior. Now I know the cold (heating) can affect this so I decided to ...
1
vote
2answers
55 views

AC efficiency and direct sunshine

We're about to get a split AC for the living room and kitchen. The apartment looks as follows: The issue is the placement of the units. There are two viable options: Place it in the kitchen (as ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

Cost effectiveness of fireplace with insert vs electric furnace

Now that winter is here I have been using my fireplace (that has an insert) more and more instead of my furnace that has a electric heater. I was wondering which method of heating would be the most ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the R-Value of plastic over a window?

So we're about to have a cold snap (20 degrees, cold for us here in Central Texas). I have old windows on the house in need of replacement, but for now, I did a hack for the next week/month: I placed ...
0
votes
3answers
495 views

Why don't heat pumps run for a bit BEFORE starting the air circulation fan?

I'd like to think I understand how heat pumps work decently well. My home has one plus electric heat, which I try not to resort to because heat pump is more efficient, if slower. When a traditional ...
2
votes
2answers
76 views

How does one carryout a thermal survey of one's house? [closed]

House built in the 1940's, Pacific Northwest, generally snowless climate, now with several generations of additions, such as a dormer, all in all at least twice as much living space compared to 1940s. ...
1
vote
4answers
1k views

Buffer tank on input or output of tankless water heater?

As I understand it, in residential systems, tankless water heater are commonly paired with a buffer tank to deal with the "cold sandwich" and finite capacity of tankless heater1. This seems ...
0
votes
3answers
137 views

Why is turning down the heat during day and night considered more efficient?

I just want to point out right away that I am not sure if this stack exchange is the most appropriate for this question - perhaps Stack exchange Chemistry or Physics would be more suitable? My ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Are there pitfalls to joining utlitiy Energy Wise programs?

I'm specifically talking about Duke's EnergyWise program, but I'm fairly sure utilities everywhere are adopting similar programs. The idea is that they tie into your major appliances (i.e., heatpump ...
2
votes
3answers
86 views

Hot weather AC Efficiency - a nightly cold-soaking head start?

Live in Southern Florida, so we use AC nearly year round. We live in a block house, concrete tile roof, fairly new, well insulated. We do not use a programmable thermostat as we are home most of the ...
0
votes
1answer
378 views

How can I estimate the percentage of electricity (bill) is due to heating and cooling?

I want to estimate our heating/cooling needs to figure out what the potential value of increasing insulation would be. Our insulation in the attic floor is the fluffy stuff (not fiberglass) and IIRC&...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

How do you deal with the giant foundation overhang when using ridged foam and a rain screen on an exterior wall?

When designing a building that uses modern techniques like those featured in this Building Science article, such as exterior ridged foam insulation and a rain screen, how do you deal with the hideous ...
2
votes
2answers
95 views

What is a good exterior wall composition for a wood frame house with pine chink siding in a moderate climate?

I'm designing a house for myself that will be built in northern Georgia (USA). The climate is moderate, with lows in the 20's during the coldest part of winter. The house will be framed with 2x6's, ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Does keeping downstairs air off at night force the upstairs hvac to work harder?

We live in a two-story home in Florida, about 3,000 sqft. We have an HVAC for downstairs, and one for upstairs. We typically will leave downstairs pretty warm at night (~80), and when we're ready for ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

How do I estimate the energy consumption of a ductless mini-split A/C unit?

I'm designing a "solar RV" built from a cargo trailer with PV panels mounted on the roof. Currently, I'm listing the expected electrical loads so I can size the solar system and battery bank ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Dryer Venting Woes - what to do?

I can certainly collect some pictures for this but I'm hoping on sound engineering & design principles I'll get a recommendation worthy of executing to that meets code. I have a vented clothes ...
2
votes
3answers
442 views

Is a 240v solar panel setup better than 120v?

I am considering a small 1kW solar system (4x 250-watt panels). The seller offers them in both 120v and 240v configurations with "micro-inverters". Given a 25-year panel warranty, could the amperage ...
1
vote
1answer
64 views

When are energy/water consumption specs important in regards to the price?

I am comparing 2 washing machines that have 148 euros difference. The cheapest one has in the specs: Annual energy consumption: 174 kWh Annual water consumption: 10.840 l Energy ...
3
votes
2answers
336 views

Will relocating my Central AC intake improve performance?

Over this weekend, I have made a breakthrough scientific discovery that will likely change the world - hot air rises compared to cooler air! :) My Central AC system has its intake at the ground level,...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

Caulk around window sills

I was pulling off the hardware for my blinds the other day (to paint) and the caulking around the window started to peel back. I cut it where it was still attached that way I could minimize the ...
1
vote
2answers
620 views

Whats more efficient for AC and Blower Fan, lower temperature/fan auto or higher temperature fan on?

This summer i want to be more efficient and save money on my AC usage because I can remember last year it was an disaster. For example, on a typical 100 degree day, the highest the temperature would ...
0
votes
3answers
115 views

Literature on effect of frequent switching on-off of air conditioner on compressor

I tried searching for literature on this using various search terms on google scholar but couldn't get anything substantial. I'm particularly interested in how adversely the AC compressor is affected ...
0
votes
2answers
7k views

Floor lamps vs ceiling lamps [closed]

Is there any difference in cost between floor lamps and ceiling lamps? If I would prefer the lowest consumption of the 2 which is more suitable?
1
vote
1answer
336 views

What's the maximum recommended temperature for your house while away?

I live in Florida, so I'm not really concerned at all about the coolness of the home in the winter. However, I'd obviously like to save as much energy as possible while gone for the day during the ...
2
votes
1answer
5k views

Should I insulate my unfinished basement ceiling?

Question Are there any negative effects from insulating a basement ceiling? Story I have an unfinished basement, with a family member living in a make-shift room. In my efforts to retain heat in ...
0
votes
3answers
208 views

How would I set the temperature of my water heater so that it is the most energy efficient?

We have a tankless water heater. I want to set the temperature so that it is the most energy efficient. Should I set the temperature of the water so that it is just hot enough for taking a shower? I ...
0
votes
2answers
91 views

Energy Star LED bulb benefits?

On the Energy Star website, I see the claim: ENERGY STAR Qualified LED Lighting: Reduces energy costs — uses at least 75% less energy than incandescent lighting, saving on operating ...
3
votes
2answers
105 views

What are my options for heating an energy efficient home with low heating needs?

I have a super insulated, envelope home. I have R-88 in the ceiling and R-44 in the walls. Living in Northern WI I do have heating requirements, but nowhere near the output of the 90,000 BTU furnace ...
3
votes
1answer
165 views

satellite water heater or recirculating pump?

I want to eliminate the long wait for hot water in my kitchen. I've ruled out a tankless unit there, so it's between a small storage-tank unit (6-12 gallons), or a recirculating pump (between the main ...
1
vote
2answers
127 views

Reducing Heating Costs - Old Brick Apartment, Space Heater vs Central

In preparations for the colder months, I am looking into ways to reduce heating costs in my apartment. I just moved to it in July, so I am not sure how well it handles the colder months. One of the ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

How much power/electricity should my central air's blower fan use?

Main Question I've already visited this similar, but different question and saw a commenter mention that about 500W seems appropriate for blower fan of an HVAC system. The past few months we've had ...
0
votes
2answers
46 views

Will adding a gas line wick heat out of my house?

I am looking at running a gas line into my house. One concern I have is that having a big metal thing with a pipe on the outside leading into my basement will wick heat out of my house. I have had a ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

How does one identify a type of ballast?

In a building how does one identify a type of ballast? We have lights all over this place, and I was recently recommended that replacing our ballast with LEDs would greatly save on our electricity ...
5
votes
1answer
323 views

How to insulate flat part of attic ceiling?

I have a large (860 sq. ft.) attic that is uninsulated. I'm planning a project now to turn this into a TV room, so I'll need to insulate, run electrical, put up drywall, etc. An insulation company ...