SHARE

Unlocking the Power of Grey Water

Posted by Rob Nicely on October 17, 2014
Unlocking the Power of Grey Water Carmel Building and Design is working on a home that's following the strategies of the Living Building Challenge. They've recently posted the first video in a series that gives you a look at what they're up to (link to the left).

Along with this blog, Carmel Building & Design is introducing the first in a series of videos that showcase aspects of what they're doing in this Carmel Point home. 

In every house we build, we look for ways to increase energy efficiency and reduce related waste and costs. In the Carmel Point home we’re building, following the Living Building Challenge, some solutions we’re using include an awesome water-to-water heat pump, demand-controlled circulation system and what the industry calls “structured plumbing.” Together, these systems dramatically reduce both the energy used to heat the water and the amount of water wasted.

Let’s talk first about the water heating system that’s a lot more than a heat pump. It’s called the Nexus Heat Recovery System. Used in Australia, Nexus was introduced in the U.S. a couple of years back. It’s in a model home near Sacramento, but this is the first complete system installed in a residence in the U.S. We are excited about proving that such a “totally cool” system can work. Here are the highlights of this revolutionary system:

  • The system includes the NEXheater energy recycling water-to-water heat pump, the eWater Collector to collect grey water, NEXtreater grey water treatment system, and the NEXservoir treated water storage tank. The grey water treatment system is expected to complete the testing process in December and be certified as a NSF 350 “onsite treatment system for non-potable grey water.” This certification is recognized by the County of Monterey Environmental Health Department.
  • The house was plumbed for separate grey water and black water drain systems, both terminating in the mechanical room. Grey water from the laundry, bathtub, showers, and bathroom sinks will drain into the collection tank. The water heater will remove the heat from the grey water, then send the grey water to the treatment system. The treated water will be stored in a tank for exterior landscaping or non-potable use in toilets.
Here's how it works:
  1. When you take a shower or wash clothes, the warm water goes down the drain.
  2. The warm water is collected in the 75-gallon capacity grey water collector.
  3. Because hot water from the water heater tank was used, it starts the heat pump process between the collector and the heater, pulling the heat back out of the warm grey water.
  4. When that “batch” of warm grey water has brought the water heater temperature back up to 120°, the grey water is sent to the treatment unit.
  5. That batch of grey water is treated and sent to the treated water reservoir.
  6. The treated water may be used to flush toilets or irrigate landscaping.
  7. The system has the capacity to treat 200 gallons of grey water per day.
  8. When you stop using the system at night, the cycle is completed leaving the water heater hot, the collector empty and the treated water waiting in the tank.
  9. The cycle starts all over again the next time you use hot water.

 

Rob Nicely is the president of Carmel Building & Design. If you have questions, send an email to info@carmelbuilding.com

This blog was reprinted with permission. You can view the original post here. 

Comments
Add a new blog comment!

Enter your comments in the box below:

(Please note that all blog entries and comments are subject to review prior to posting.)

 

While we will do our best to monitor all comments and blog posts for accuracy and relevancy, Home Energy is not responsible for content posted by our readers or third parties. Home Energy reserves the right to edit or remove comments or blog posts that do not meet our community guidelines.

Recent Blogs
Unlocking the Power of Grey Water

Unlocking the Power of Grey Water

Rob Nicely

Along with this blog, Carmel Building & Design is introducing the first in a series of videos that showcase aspects of what they're doing in this Carmel Point home.  [continue reading]

Home Energy's Canadian Correspondent

Home Energy's Canadian Correspondent

Shawna Henderson

Shawna Henderson, reporting from way out here on the edge of the world. Well, from Nova Scotia, Canada, just outside Halifax. For my ‘Murrican friends, once you hit Maine, keep going east. You’ll bump into us eventually.I am honoured, and very chuffed, to be bringing the news on the Canadian home performance/high performance building industry to Home Energy readers. A quick history: I had a fire lit under me ... [continue reading]

Taking on the Living Building Challenge

Taking on the Living Building Challenge

Rob Nicely

We consider ourselves lucky because we have clients who not only want to incorporate sustainable building practices into their home, but they fully embrace the latest and highest standards. We’re currently working with a couple on a complete remodel of their Carmel Point home, applying the principles of Living Building Challenge (LBC) and aiming for LBC net zero energy certification. [continue reading]

Redefining the American Dream

Redefining the American Dream

Macie Melendez

Recently, I attended a panel on the future of affordable housing. While the focus of the panel was on the idea of “home”—something that the organization that created the event, Home Matters, knows a lot about—panelists also discussed ways in which the home has a ripple effect on our society. [continue reading]

 Housing Innovation Awards Recognize Leadership in Residential Efficiency

Housing Innovation Awards Recognize Leadership in Residential Efficiency

Sam Rashkin

Today’s housing market is incredibly competitive. Constructing homes that sell and that continue to delight homeowners for years to come is a challenge. [continue reading]

5 Ways to Improve Homeowners' Energy Efficiency Outdoors

5 Ways to Improve Homeowners' Energy Efficiency Outdoors

Josh Weiss-Roessler

When most people think about ways to save energy in their home, their minds first go to insulation. It makes sense that homeowners would want to focus on insulation—after all, when you minimize air leaks, you can cut down on your use of central heating and cooling units, resulting in tangible savings on the next utility bill. [continue reading]

"Cool Smart" Program Celebrates 10th Anniversary

Lisa Rinkus

A dozen Northeast companies received COOL SMART awards during the New England Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) golf tournament this month. Sponsored by the Massachusetts/Rhode Island COOL SMART program, these awards honor contractors for energy efficiency practices, leadership, and quality installation of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. The annual golf event, held in Stow, Mass., attracts approximately 150 participants throughout the region. [continue reading]

ORNL Researchers Develop 'Autotune' Software to Make it Quicker, Easier, and Cheaper to Model Energy Use of Buildings

ORNL Researchers Develop 'Autotune' Software to Make it Quicker, Easier, and Cheaper to Model Energy Use of Buildings

Katie Jones

There are many ways to save energy in residential and commercial buildings. There are products that use less energy for lighting, heating, and cooling; materials that better insulate and seal building envelopes; and architectural and engineering designs that lower utility bills through efficient use of space and renewable energy. In fact, experts specify up to 3,000 parameters when modeling a building’s energy use. Building Energy Modeling (BEM) uses computer simulations to estimate energy use ... [continue reading]

Aeroseal Acquires Comfort Institute

Aeroseal Acquires Comfort Institute

Brad Brenner

Aeroseal LLC, the owner and licensee of aeroseal duct sealing technology has acquired Comfort Institute (CI), a leading provider of home performance equipment and training for the HVAC industry. The acquisition combines the two organization’s expertise to create an authoritative outlet for home performance training and ongoing professional support. [continue reading]

Some Highlights from the NASCSP Annual Training Conference, 2014

Some Highlights from the NASCSP Annual Training Conference, 2014

Jim Gunshinan

The National Association for State Community Services Programs (NASCSP) met in Raleigh, North Carolina, for its annual training conference. Here are some personal highlights:   • Raleigh, North Carolina, is a beautiful town but hard to take in from the 6th floor of my hotel room. All I saw were trees and a clump of tall buildings downtown. That’s why the city is called “City of Oaks”.   • At one ... [continue reading]

Earn BPI CEU credits
HEP
Home Performance with EnergyStar
Email Newsletter

Home Energy E-Newsletter

Sign up for our free monthly
E-Newsletter!

Harness the power of
HOME PERFORMANCE!

Get the Home Energy
e-newsletter

FREE!

SUBSCRIBE

NOW!