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.

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1answer
79 views

High Efficiency Furnace vented through the roof. How screwed am I?

I'm investigating installing a central air system and in doing so it was brought to my attention that my high efficiency furnace may not be installed properly. I'm in a narrow semi without much ...
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2answers
74 views

Bathroom remodel & Calif Title 24 requirements

I'm told that any permit work in my bathroom will trigger Title 24 requirements for humidity sensing exhaust fan and motion sensing lighting. I've found basic info but am confused about a couple of ...
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1answer
71 views

Radon remediation in a part-time home

We have a second home that we use approximately 1 week/month year-round, and more in the summer. When we purchased the home in 2019, it was tested at 9pCi/L, and a remediation system was installed ...
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3answers
65 views

How to track energy usage per zone?

I have an old oil boiler with 4 zones, individual zone pumps. I'm trying to track heat usage on a per-zone basis. Would it be possible to simply track how often each zone pump runs and apply their ...
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0answers
29 views

Any benefit to air sealing fixture boxes in cathedral ceiling? If so, ideal method?

New house. We have a cathedral ceiling. Foam vent baffles from eave to ridge, r-38 fiberglass (unfaced), sheetrock. Most of the lights in the ceiling are LED puck lights that have a built in gasket ...
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2answers
68 views

How can I trust a local window manufacturer? What to research or check?

I'd like to support local and there's 3 companies nearby that offer custom made vinyl windows. They all seem to be >30 year old companies, which I respect a lot. I did a ton of research it seems ...
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3answers
145 views

Weatherstripping for inswing exterior door with clearance problems. Clearance door sweep?

How would you weatherstrip this gap under an inswing exterior door? The door threshold is not very high, and the door already drags a bit on the interior carpet, so many styles of door threshold are ...
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3answers
98 views

Should I convert my 4-stroke engines from regular gas to propane

I am planning on converting my portable-generator/lawn-mower/snow-blower from gas to propane. This was my analysis; could you please comment on the facts, analysis & conclusion? Am I on the right ...
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1answer
22 views

How to find a very low U-value replacement window for a bathroom?

I found 0.27 for a Pella 250 series at Lowe's. I would like to find a window with a lower U-value. How do I go about that?
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4answers
64 views

Would triple pane give me better results than double pane in a key location (bathroom)?

I am ordering replacement windows. I'm going to go with double-hung in the bedrooms and bathroom, and casement above the kitchen sink. Double-hung vinyl with added foam insulation in the frames. ...
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1answer
95 views

Big box Pella vs. Pella Pella

The Pella salesman claims that his replacement windows are better than the Pella replacement windows that are sold at the big box stores. Is that true? I've done my best to ask the windows people at ...
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3answers
98 views

Insulating an attic ceiling

I am planning to insulate my walk-in attic to turn it into a storage room(closet for the wife), but I am having some issue understanding the process. The ceiling of this attic is at 45 degree. It has ...
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0answers
22 views

Energy-saving boiler settings?

Does it matter in terms of energy usage whether my gas heater is set to higher or lower temperature? Situation: - 2 floor house, all water radiators heated by the same gas boiler system -1st floor ...
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1answer
114 views

My contractor wants to install a different brand of solar panel from what was approved in their permit

I am having solar panels installed on my house. My contractor told me that they are installing 20 Canadian Solar CS3k-325-MS panels. I just got a copy of the plants they sent to the city for their ...
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3answers
65 views

Water/antifreeze radiator cooled work shop

An additional line of thought. Cooling radiators in summer? I found this having the same concept for cooling. I live in south louisiana, US where 95F is vary common turning tin boxes into a slow ...
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2answers
75 views

Considering portable a/c vs our old Central Air, from 1992, in 2 story, 2300 square foot house, High Desert

I'm in the high desert of Southern California. We're in a 2300 sq foot home, 2 stories with 3 bedrooms and 1 master bedroom on second story. The house is cooled by 2 central air systems, manufactured ...
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1answer
64 views

A more thermally efficient house - can I block up vents in my brickwork?

I live in the UK in a typical '1930's semi' house. It is built with two layers of good old bricks and a cavity wall inbetween them. In my hallway, there is currently no carpet or hardwood flooring - ...
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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 ...
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0answers
62 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 ...
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1answer
41 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 ...
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1answer
65 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 ...
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2answers
207 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 ...
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1answer
25 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 ...
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1answer
349 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 ...
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0answers
73 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. ...
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1answer
110 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 ...
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1answer
190 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 ...
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2answers
515 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 ...
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1answer
2k 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 ...
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4answers
7k 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 ...
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1answer
86 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 ...
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1answer
1k 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 ...
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2answers
4k 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'...
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13answers
5k 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 ...
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2answers
56 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 ...
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1answer
88 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 ...
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2answers
4k 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 ...
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3answers
1k 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 ...
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2answers
79 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. ...
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5answers
3k 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 ...
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3answers
153 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 ...
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4answers
3k views

Are there pitfalls to joining utility 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
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4answers
121 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 ...
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1answer
712 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&...
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1answer
222 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 ...
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2answers
140 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, ...
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2answers
6k 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 ...
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1answer
7k 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 ...
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1answer
2k 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 ...
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3answers
1k 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 ...