A car’s efficiency is simply stated in MPG. But how are houses described? Btus per square feet? Comfort units per person? Linear feet of granite counterop per kitchen area?
The HERS index is a nationally recognized system for assessing the energy efficiency of a home. The HERS index compares your home to a comparably-sized home built to the 2006 International Energy Conservation Code. With this number you can have a third-party assessment of its performance according to many inputs including insulation, air leakage, appliances, windows, and lighting.
Why would you pay for this? Perhaps you are selling the house and would like to reliably market the performance upgrades. Perhaps you would like to make some improvements and know what the relative outcomes will be. Perhaps you’re simply curious and would like to know. Whatever your motivation, Artisan Energy LLC would be happy to help you with your decision.
Thanks to Cat Capellero and the September 2013 issue of Madison’s Abode section for a great write-up! I loved the humor that she brought to this subject.
This is an excellent time of the year to have an assessment done since temperatures are falling and the fall can be a great time to work on your house. And, as the article suggests, this can be excellent time of the year to augment your winter wardrobe with some good silk or woolen long johns!
What I do for a living is not rocket science. It’s basic physics: things move from high concentration to low concentration. I basically repeat that on a daily basis and then encourage people to keep the valuable stuff in while sending the bad stuff out.
But it’s amazing how easy it is to screw stuff up. Customer reviews indicate that Artisan Energy provides clear and relevant reports. But it’s tricky to include all the details.
Want more details? Read this. It’s basically a how-to manual for what I do. Excellent air sealing tips, reasoning behind the logic, and fun to read. Thanks to buildingscience.com and Dr. J. Lstiburek for the guidance.
OK so you’ve insulated. You’re told that your house is acceptably tight. The furnace is “high-enough” efficiency and you run your AC about 4 weeks per year. Now what?
Lighting! Read more here! We overlook lighting’s contribution to total home energy but as the shell upgrades are maxed out, the “slice of the home energy pie” occupied by lighting substantially increases.
Simple: turn ‘em off!
Medium: Delamp. Translated: see if you can stand 1 bulb instead of 2. 2 bulbs instead of 3. etc.
Advanced: Learn about light quality: color temperature and color renderering index. Then go invest in some CFLs and LEDs!
We’ll be hearing a lot about this in the coming years. And remember: you’ll get used to the light quality and it’s more affordable for our community to buy efficiency upgrades than to buy a new power plant.
Call soon to schedule your Green Madison follow-up assessment! If you have completed eligible measures from a noted Trade Ally and are seeking incentive processing, then please call for a follow-up visit at no additional charge. This program will close Aug 30, 2013 so the time to act is upon us.
This federally supported program is no longer taking new applicants as of June 15, 2013.
“I appreciate the chance to work with and learn from you. Look forward to more!” – Ms. M.G., Madison
“Thanks so much for your work, and for coming out and taking time to answer our questions. I’ll be sure to recommend you to others interested in this kind of work.” – Mr. P. H., Madison
“Professional and worked with me on some extra issues” – Mr. W. B., Sun Prairie
“Responsive and competent. He was very helpful in identifying potential improvements and reward benefits.” – Ms. T. M., Madison
“The home performance consultant was excellent, very important, indispensable. He was the person truly looking out for our best interests moreso than a contractor.” Mr P. R., McFarland
I found this article to be very telling on several levels. In it, the authors argue for abandoning the various certifications and merit badges (energy star, LEED, passivhaus, etc) associated with building high performance or “green” housing in favor of adopting good practices gleaned from the years of advanced methodology.
1) This shows market acceptance of the value of good insulation levels. If you don’t know what 10-20-40-60 means, then you need to read this article.
2) This reminds designers and owners that reasonable size and design (i.e. small and simple) are, as always, the most reliable means of providing low maintenance comfort at a competitive cost.
Thanks, Sam B. and Dave K. for the discussion on this article!