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Net Zero Construction; Energy Design Specialist

SamSam1 | Posted in Energy Efficiency and Durability on

Any Energy Design Specialist here? Any suggestions for net zero construction? I am planning to go all-electric for my ADU and any advice regarding kitchen equipments, AC system and water heater would be highly appreciated.

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  1. Expert Member
    BILL WICHERS | | #1

    Go with induction for the cooktop. That one is pretty much a no brainer. Mini splits for heating and cooling, and a heat pump water heater. If you're not using a heat pump water heater with an all electric project, you're actually in worse shape than if you were just using a natural gas water heater. Electric resistance heat is rarely a good idea from a system wide efficiency standpoint.

    Avoid battery systems. I'm not usually a big proponent of net zero plans, but if you have net metering options available in your area, that would be the way to do it. If you don't have a net metering option, you're usually better off from a cost/benefit standpoint getting on a time of day electric rate and putting in a smaller solar system that can operate in peak shave mode, cancelling out your daytime electrical draw while solar power is available instead of over producing and selling the excess back to the utility. Batteries are a big cost, a big maintenance item, and come with some risk, so I recommend avoiding them in most systems for those reasons.


    1. SamSam1 | | #2

      Thanks Bill for your reply. I am going to put solar and go with net metering. I am building an ADU of 1200 sqft with 6 rooms, 2 and 1/2 bathrooms, and a kitchen.
      Regarding heating and cooling of the house, do you have any recommendation how to do it? Should I go with ductless minisplits or duct mini splits?
      Regarding heating water, should I go with hybrid heat pumps easily available in Lowes or go with SanCo2?

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