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8 Answers

Mini Splits winning the battle; with PV as a source let's even call it green.

Mini splits with PV are a great option even if not super insulated yet.

Pellet stoves do well, cost as much as a mini split and you have to attend to them.

Oil seems outdated and expensive and smells in old systems and very expensive to install.

Solar thermal there are a few that feel they can justify this, not all.

LP is never going to be as inexpensive as NG, NG is a good value for now, and maybe half a century more, depends on if we start really selling our frack fuel to Europe, which I doubt for now as they have Russia and Russia needs the sales Putin threats or no threats.

Asked By aj builder, Upstate NY Zone 6a | Dec 11 14
27 Answers

Options for garage heat

I would like opinions regarding options for heating a garage. I know, I know, "Why the H@!! are you heating a garage?" will come to mind for many of you. Others will agree that it saves on car repair costs, improves longevity, and allows for storage of "perishables" such as paint cans, bulk canned garden vegetables, and other things wife understandably does not want in house.

Here are the pertinent factors shaping the decision:
* Super-insulated house, Manual J heat load calc gives 12,400 BTU/h (3.6 kW) peak heating requirement (for garage alone)

Asked By Kent Jeffery | Nov 20 14
8 Answers

Adding mechanical ventilation to a leaky house

I have an older home that I know leaks a lot of air, and I’m wondering if adding mechanical ventilation would improve the indoor air quality.

When i first bought the house, it tested over 10 ach/50. I have since improved the basement by air sealing the rim joist, service penetrations and the slab to foundation wall cracks etc. The house was last tested around 8 ach/50 so this helped, but obviously the rest of the house is still very leaky.

Asked By Mark Fredericks | Dec 3 14
40 Answers

Seeking an air-to-water heat pump

I'm looking for an air-to-water heat pump and feedback from those who've used them. We have a LEED for Homes project in Victoria, BC, perfect climate for heat pump, affordability of project prohibits groundsource for 36Kbtu heat loss of 1800 ft2 home and for optimal comfort, low temp/efficiency, to avoid ducting we're selected hydronic in-slab for heating distribution thus standard air-to-air heat pump is a no-go.

Asked By Allison Ashcroft | Jul 28 09
2 Answers

Looking for a hot water booster for geothermal in spring and fall

We live in Texas, we've had Geothermal for 20 years, and we're happy with it. The unit generates plenty of hot water in the summer and winter, but there are a few weeks in the spring and fall when the system doesn't run, and we get no hot water. To handle that, we have a pair of 50-gallon water heaters arranged in serial. The back tank is just storage. The front tank is storage and fill-in heat for the spring and fall.

Asked By Barry Lovalvo | Nov 30 14
13 Answers

Most sesible heating system for a new house build on Vancouver Island

We are in the planning stage for new construction of a 2 level 2600 sqft home on Vancouver Island. As we're in the process of allocating budget we would like to know what the most sensible heating system to use will be. We require electricity to be our primary source with wood heat as back up, as we lack natural gas and propane is too expensive. We understand that base board electric is the most cost effective for install, but we're looking to improve efficiency, durability and sustainability with increasing energy costs in mind. As far as we know our options are as follows:

Asked By Blake Klopfenstein | Nov 26 14
3 Answers

Brands of HRV?

Anyone have any experience with either Lifebreath or Imperial HRVs? My architect specified Zehnder, but my HVAC guy has installed Lifebreath and Imperial, but not Zehnder.

Asked By stephen sheehy | Nov 17 14
5 Answers

What's a good damper for a bath fan/range hood vent?

My bath fan vent is basically a big hole in the house to the exterior and sucks air out of the house in the high New Mexico winds, which today reached 30 mph. There's no damper or air check valve or anything like that installed up there, and I'd like to rectify it. What do people use for this situation? A standard butterfly damper? Something louvered? This thing?

Asked By Nathaniel G | Nov 23 14
12 Answers

What is the efficiency of gas powered infrared radiant heat?

My project: Climate zone 6A Hortonville, WI 54944 Energy source: electric or propane, no natural gas available

An earlier post about heating garage brought up the possibility of gas powered infrared radiant. I'm familiar with these devices, but I literally can't find any information from the manufacturers regarding their efficiency. They all claim to be "very efficient" for various reasons, but I can't find hard data.

Are they rated by a percent like house furnaces? I.E. Are they in the range of 80% efficient ceiling hung unit heaters?

Asked By Rick Van Handel | Nov 24 14
5 Answers

Heat-pump water heater in conditioned space

I am building a net-zero energy home to Passive House standards in the Seattle area. The best scenario for a heat pump water heater is in an attached garage, unheated basement or in the conditioned space of a house in a humid heating climate (why doesn't everyone in Florida own one?). Unfortunately, my only option is within my conditioned space in a heating climate. My heating system will be a ductless minisplit air source heat pump. I would prefer to not remove the heat from my utility room only to make my heating system work harder.

Asked By Gerald Blycker | Nov 24 14
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