Energy Efficiency Ideas
– The ENERGY STAR program
has been around since 1992 and has spurred the development of countless energy-
and cost-saving home appliances including washers and dryers, refrigerators and
freezers, heating and cooling systems, lighting and windows, etc.
– One of the most impactful ways to minimize energy
consumption is to install optimal amounts of insulation during initial
construction. Not only are heating and cooling costs reduced, but overall
comfort is improved.
– Dual flush toilets and low-flow faucets and
shower heads that promote water efficiency are very popular and rated essential
or desirable by 72 percent of consumers. Tankless water heaters, which produce on-demand
hot water and eliminate the costs of maintaining a tank of standby hot water,
were also desirable green components, rated essential or desirable by 67
heating and cooling
– Though ranked last among features
listed in the green section of NAHB’s survey, solar elements were considered to
be desirable or essential among 61 percent of respondents.
New from APA: Raised Heel Truss Construction Guide
Raised-heel trusses, also known as energy-heel trusses,
deliver cost-effective energy performance, especially when used with continuous
plywood or OSB sheathing. Framing with raised-heel trusses and continuously
sheathing exterior walls improves structural and energy performance and offers
many savings that benefit both the builder and the homeowner.
trusses compress insulation at the perimeter of buildings, reducing its
insulative abilities along the tops of exterior walls. Raising trusses higher
above the top plate improves ventilation and allows insulation to extend to all
edges without compression. This results in a residence that is more
energy-efficient and noticeably more comfortable for the homeowner—and this
easy-to-implement technique offers savings to the builder, too. The energy code
allows for use of less insulation for the entire ceiling system when a
raised-heel truss system is used, allowing builders to reduce material costs
while increasing energy efficiency.
system has structural advantages as well. Wall systems combining raised-heel
trusses with plywood or OSB continuous sheathing have better resistance to
lateral forces such as high winds or seismic activity than those fastened with