To take on climate change, go passive

“Passive house design and construction…relies on solid building science: Orient the building correctly to the sun. Seal it tight to halt air leaks that sap energy. Insulate the walls and roof to a “super” level. Use high-performance windows and doors. Eliminate thermal bridges. Do these things right and you can save 80-90% on heat energy, […]

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Right-Sizing AC in High-Performance Homes

Learn why bigger is not always better when it comes to air conditioning. Read the article by the Insulation Institute here.

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The Health Benefits of a Certified-Green Custom Home

“Improved heating, ventilation, insulation and air sealing contribute to reducing risks and symptoms of respiratory disease, asthma, cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, stress and infectious disease, and more.” Read the full article by Bright Leaf Homes here.

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2009 Called. It Wants Its Energy Code Back

“The energy code fundamentally improves the durability of buildings as well as the health and safety of us humans inside. It’s not just a “nice to have”.” Insulation Institute spoke with Christine Brinker about why code adoption lags in many states and how builders can benefit as their states take up newer versions of the […]

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High Performance Homes – Home of the Future

“We need to use materials that stop introducing so many chemicals and contaminants in the air we breathe.” Better health, comfort, and durability are just a few benefits of living in a “High Performance Home”. Watch the video to learn more.      

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Everything you need to know about water heaters

A helpful resource for selecting the right water heater for your home can be found here. Check out the Energy Saver 101: Water Heating infographic to learn more about the different types of water heaters and how to select the right model for your home.  

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HERS Index – The Natural Energy Code Compliance Choice

The Home Energy Rating System – making it simple to meet strict energy code regulations and measure the performance of a home. See why the HERS Index is the natural energy code compliance choice here.

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Explore Our Map of Home Energy Ratings

Does your home have an Energy Score? Check out our map to find out.  

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Leading the Clean Energy Transition in 2018

According to Xcel Energy’s Corporate Responsibility Report, “…customers have saved enough electricity through our programs to help avoid building 20 average-size power plants.” Energy-efficiency programs not only save you money on your energy bills, they often offer substantial rebates – while also avoiding the need to build future power plants.   win-win-win Read Xcel Energy’s article […]

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Making all buildings solar-ready: 7 rules of thumb

“Not every project can achieve zero energy when it opens, but the falling cost of solar, and rising public expectations for implementing photovoltaics, means that there is no better time to deliver solar-ready buildings.” Read the full article, by the US Green Building Council, here.

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What’s In A Frame?

“Smart builders will take advantage of little things that don’t cost much to be unique.” Doug McNeill talks about how builders can implement small changes in framing to get big changes in home energy efficiency — without substantially increasing costs. Read the article by Insulation Institute here.

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5 Priority Air Sealing Locations for New Homes

Achieving an energy efficient, durable and comfortable home starts with framing and includes air sealing and insulation. The Insulation Institute identifies five air sealing locations that are the most critical to help builders develop an effective strategy to target air sealing priorities. Read the article by Insulation Institute here.

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The Top 10 Features New Construction Buyers Really Want

A recent survey found that 50% of new construction home buyers want an energy efficient home. As consumers seek more information on energy efficiency when shopping for a new home, they will seek the HERS Index Score in the same fashion as the MPG for a car. Learn more about the HERS Index at www.hersindex.com.  

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Blow the Insulation, Not the Budget

A look at building an air tight, high-performance home, without breaking the bank. “Builders can meet high-performance targets like Zero Energy Ready utilizing basic building science knowledge (like where homes leak the most air) and more cost-effective products, like blown-in fiberglass.” Read the full article from the Insulation Institute here.

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What makes the perfect home?

The Perfect Home: where health, the environment, and energy-efficiency mix. Tell Us—What matters most to you?  

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4 Steps to Prevent Excess Moisture in New Homes

Building Scientist Joe Lstiburek talks about the four things builders can do to prevent excess moisture during construction. Read the latest from Insulation Institute here.

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Introducing HERS Index to Appraisers

Real estate appraisers are gaining access to data on a home’s energy performance, allowing them to quickly and easily get information on HERS rated homes. This data includes the HERS Index Score, estimated annual energy costs, energy cost savings, and more. “Having this important information means that appraisers can begin to understand and value the […]

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How behavioral science can lower your energy bill

What should I do to save energy? “There are many experts who can help answer that question. My goal is to make sure we’re all asking it.” –Alex Laskey: How behavioral science can lower your energy bill

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Why Is America Wasting So Much Energy?

“America fails to capture some two-thirds of the power it generates, much of it through simple waste…this energy waste costs American businesses and households billions of dollars every year.” Read the full article by The New York Times here.

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12 Areas of Focus for High Performance Walls

  Here’s the Latest from Insulation Institute: 12 Areas of Focus for High Performance Walls “Air sealing is the most critical component of meeting the blower door testing requirement. This can’t be done without understanding where homes typically leak air to prevent and/or address the top air sealing trouble spots.”

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Profile of a Top One Percent Builder

  Here’s the Latest from Insulation Institute: Profile of a Top One Percent Builder “It’s what you can’t see that matters.”  

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The Tradeoffs of Building Green

  Catherine Mohr provides an insightful discussion on the tradeoffs that one must consider when building or remodeling a home. Listen to the full TED Talk here: The Tradeoffs of Building Green

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When To Make A Date With A HERS Rater

  Here’s the Latest from Insulation Institute: When To Make A Date With A HERS Rater “The number one thing that builders can do to make the transition from baseline code-built homes to HERS rated homes is consult with a HERS rater early on in the design phase of a new home.”

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Inspection Perfection

Penz Custom Homes & Expert Insulation show us their excellent technique used to avoid framing gaps to the exterior.  Gaps in framing members, such as studs and bottom plates, can lead to uneven interior surface temperatures and unconditioned air leakage into the structure.  Caulk, foam and/or seal gaps and joints before insulation and vapor retarder […]

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Inspection Perfection

This week Meier Companies, Inc takes the spotlight for their impeccable attic knee wall framing practices.  When cavities are not enclosed on all six sides, effectiveness of insulation is reduced by air leakage and causes uneven interior surface temperatures. Install solid backing on attic side of  knee walls and solid blocking along the ceiling line.  These […]

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Inspection Perfection

Step on a crack and you’ll break your mother’s back (or just her wallet, due to a higher energy bill). DeWitz Homebuilders & Expert Insulation did a great job by showing us how to correctly apply bottom plate sealant to avoid cracks. Cracks between bottom plates and floors can lead to unconditioned air leakage into […]

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Inspection Perfection

This cold weather isn’t stopping Exclusive Homebuilders & Expert Insulation from getting their jobs done well!  Gaps in framing can lead to uneven interior surface temperatures and unconditioned air leakage into the structure. Caulk or foam the gap between sill plates, sill seal and foundation walls to prevent this air leakage into the structure.  These photos […]

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ATTENTION BUILDERS AND CONSTRUCTION PROFESSIONALS

XRG Concepts would like to invite you to join us! The formal PDF invitation is attached below.  Please feel free to invite others who would benefit from this gathering.  RSVP kalley@xrgconcepts.com by November 18th. On November 30th, 2016, the current Home Energy Excellence program format will end and a new one will be in place for […]

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Inspection Perfection

This week’s Inspection Perfection post recognizes Bigelow Homes for their job well done. Without a continuous vapor retarder/air barrier, moisture can enter building cavities through vapor diffusion and air transport leading to building durability issues, potential occupant health problems, and reducing insulation effective R-value. Apply poly before framing interior partition walls to exterior wall which […]

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We are a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home partner!

      A DOE Zero Energy Ready Home is a high performance home which has utilized enough energy efficient design strategies, that a renewable energy system could be installed to offset all or most of its annual energy consumption. The DOE Zero Energy Ready Home is a new and compelling way to recognize builders for their leadership […]

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