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Recent Blogs
New National Healthy Housing Standard Published

New National Healthy Housing Standard Published

Rebecca Morley

Yesterday, the National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) in partnership with the American Public Health Association (APHA) unveiled a new National Healthy Housing Standard. The standard is aimed at improving the health of Americans by addressing serious health and safety hazards in U.S. homes. The home is the most dangerous place for U.S. families. Roughly 30 million families live in unsafe and unhealthy housing with broken heating and plumbing, holes in walls and ... [continue reading]

Reducing Waste in Residential Hot Water Distribution Systems: Field Study Recruitment

Reducing Waste in Residential Hot Water Distribution Systems: Field Study Recruitment

Jim Gunshinan

Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (LBNL) is conducting a study to explore the efficiency of hot water distribution systems in California residences. [continue reading]

Honda's Zero Net Energy Smart Home

Honda's Zero Net Energy Smart Home

Liz Nelson

Zero Net Energy means that a home creates as much energy as it uses. This essentially takes homes off of the power grid and makes them self-sustaining. Honda is taking this concept to the University of California, Davis after the successful demonstration of a smart home in Japan in 2012. As California has plans in place for all newly constructed homes to be self-sustaining by 2020, Honda may have a solution that will make lawmakers, citizens, and ... [continue reading]

Inconspicuous Tankless Water Heaters

Inconspicuous Tankless Water Heaters

Ted Shoemaker

Hot water is second only to heating as the biggest energy consumer in the average household, and a German industry association claims that the use of tankless water heaters can produce some savings there. [continue reading]

Change is Hard—How Do You Get People to Accept It?

Change is Hard—How Do You Get People to Accept It?

Jim Gunshinan

Changing one’s daily routine and making big decisions about money is hard. When a home performance contractor asks a customer to consider an audit, they are asking a lot. Besides the cost of the audit and any retrofit measures the homeowner chooses to pay for, which is probably the biggest challenge, there is also the inconvenience. The audit and retrofit may require the homeowner to take time off from work. Having workers climb ... [continue reading]

HOMES Act Will Save Homeowners Energy, Money

HOMES Act Will Save Homeowners Energy, Money

Kara Saul Rinaldi

Representatives David McKinley (R-WV) and Peter Welch (D-VT) re-introduced the Home Owners Managing Energy Savings (HOMES) Act, H.R. 2127, yesterday marking a step forward in bi-partisan leadership on energy policy. [continue reading]

Adventures in Blower Door Testing

Adventures in Blower Door Testing

Macie Melendez

When Steve Mann (of Home Energy Services) asks you to come along for the first blower door testing in a LEED for Homes, DOE Challenge Home, Passive House, net-zero energy aspiring home, you say yes. Lucky for me, I was asked this very question just a few weeks ago, and was able to take a first-hand look at something that I often only read about. [continue reading]

The Universe Is Made of Stories

The Universe Is Made of Stories

Jim Gunshinan

The late poet and political activist Muriel Rukeyser famously said, The Universe is made of stories, not of atoms. It’s not just words that make up stories. A scientific equation is a story, and so is getting up from my seat and stretching—it’s the story of back care for an editor. We can tell a story with the expression on our faces. What does it tell you when a ... [continue reading]

Northwest Energy Star Super-Efficient Homes—#6: The Pumpkin Ridge Passive House

Northwest Energy Star Super-Efficient Homes—#6: The Pumpkin Ridge Passive House

Neil Grigsby

The Pumpkin Ridge Passive House is one of six super energy-efficient homes being highlighted this year by Northwest Energy Homes—in collaboration with builders, utilities and homeowners—to increase awareness and adoption of advanced building practices and products that can improve quality, comfort, and energy efficiency in new homes. [continue reading]

Not Everyone Needs to be an Energy Auditor

Not Everyone Needs to be an Energy Auditor

Macie Melendez

“All of the building science in the world means nothing if it never makes it to the building,” said John Costello, lead field instructor at Everblue Training Institute during a webinar earlier this week. The webinar, titled “Not Everyone Needs to be an Energy Auditor: Exploring BPI’s Building Science Principles Certificate of Knowledge,” explained to participants what the new certificate’s purpose is and why the industry needs ... [continue reading]

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