Tag Archives: Net-Zero Energy
Posted on 19. Dec, 2011 by Rebecca Firestone.
This news flash about a seemingly obscure topic is of immediate importance to all our architect Title 24 clients -and it’s good news for a change. The Quality of Insulation Installation credit is a HERS test that can help design projects to achieve Title 24 energy compliance, and we’ve had a couple of nasty surprises with it in the past.
Apparently, up until around yesterday, the California Energy Commission did not officially recognize the QII test as valid for open-cell spray foam. Our insulation expert James Morshead of SDI Insulation actually sent me an urgent email yesterday with the news, saying:
Posted on 09. Sep, 2010 by Rebecca Firestone.
Of all the green building guides for homeowners out there, here is one that should be on everyone’s shelf – owners, architects, builders alike. It’s called “Energy Free: Homes for a Small Planet” by Ann V. Edminster, a Bay Area local. Everything I’ve been struggling so hard to explain to our Title 24 clients, even in a limited way, is presented in this book with clarity and accuracy, in a very readable and lively prose style. It’s backed by both the latest research and by personal experience and observation.
Posted on 18. Jan, 2010 by Rebecca Firestone.
While researching solar technologies, we at Green Compliance Plus heard from solar installers who all seem to think that architects are hard to work with. So, we spoke with Fernando Valenzuela of Alter Systems in Berkeley about how to design a solar-ready home. Note that only about 5-10% of Alter Systems’ customers are owner/architect teams. Usually it’s the homeowners approaching them directly because they want to “go solar”.
So… why are architects hard to work with? “They have a groupthink… they like design, the look, but they don’t understand systems. They ask questions like ‘why can’t we use this roof’ without realizing that you can’t split up an array. Their projects aren’t always quick, either, and rebates that were designed for may be gone by the time the project gets through approval.”
Posted on 13. Aug, 2009 by Rebecca Firestone.
Nearly every week, we are asked why Title 24 does not give credits for electric water heating if that electricity comes from solar or other self-generated power. In fact, it seems that many of the renewable energy developments occurring now are not fully recognized in Title 24, not even in the 2008 code. We’re in the position of telling people that their homes, which are designed to consume very little conventional power, may have trouble passing the Title 24 code if those homes rely solely on solar electric for all their home power, heating, cooling, and water heating needs.
So why does T24 continue to penalize electric resistance heat and water heating in solar homes? Why does T24 not give credits for self-generated power (geotherm, solar, wind, other)? And why can’t our utilities buy back excess power from customers who generate more than they use? Wouldn’t this help to reduce California’s grid load, save California homeowners money, provide entrepeneurial opportunities, and reduce American dependence on foreign oil?