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RE: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????

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  • Karl Rabago
    Very helpful stuff - thanks! karl ... From: hreg@yahoogroups.com on behalf of John and Mia Sent: Sat 04-Feb-06 11:34 PM To: hreg@yahoogroups.com Subject: Re:
    Message 1 of 8 , Feb 5, 2006
    • 0 Attachment
      Very helpful stuff - thanks!

      karl


      -----Original Message-----
      From: hreg@yahoogroups.com on behalf of John and Mia
      Sent: Sat 04-Feb-06 11:34 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????

      John,
      thanks for the link and the info... that's a much better system to have no ducts in the attic as they are wasteful... I'm really excited about the future of Green Homebuilding... I guess it's sort of like the new hybrid cars that get around double or more the gas mileage compared to what everyone else is driving... If I remember what I read about EnergyStar homes is that they can allow up to either 10 or 15% loss in the ducts and they are pressure tested so that is better than non energystar homes... another thing I read is that your ducts should NEVER have to be cleaned... having dirty ducts is an obvious sign your ducts are leaking somewhere to allow all sorts of junk in them... instead of getting them cleaned get them tested for leaks and have them replaced with ones that don't leak... you'll save money and have better air in your house... John

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: John Miggins
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 11:10 PM
      Subject: Re: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


      With the radiant barrier you may have already addressed this. I would suggest that you measure the attic temp to see what is riese to in heat of day.

      Take your lead from the latest award winning homes in the NAHB contest for energy value award and you will see several trends.

      All have no ducts in attics but in conditioned space,

      ducts in attics lose 30% or cooling and heat due to hot attic and leaking vents. consequently most contractors oversize the AC to compensate. Given that most people already have their houses and to rectity they need radiant barrier under roof deck or attic ventillation or both.

      savings of 15 to 20% on AC costs, this is science backed up by studies.

      Soffit vents are essential but ridge vents are passive and without some force moving air they are not as effecive as a fan in my opinion and exerience

      I have documented testimonials of 20 degree drop in attic temp and 2 degree cooler air coming from vents once attic ventillation (solar attic fans) installed.

      I think that they are a good investment, some architects disagree but what do they offer as alternative?

      if makes no sense to spend your hard earned dolllars to cool air to send it through a 130 degree attic to reach your rooms.

      Ultimately it is better to have no ducts in attic but since most homes aleady have this condition you must address this by radiant barrier or attic ventillation or both.

      taking the lead from the award winning homes, the winner in texas leads one to say that one must address the heat in the attic to yield the savings from the single largest energy appliance the AC.


      http://www.nahbrc.org/evha/

      Every winning home had ducts on conditioned space not the attic, since this is not a possibility then you must attack the heat in the attic, stop it or ventillate it.

      Create low to high air flow, air in at soffits expelled by some positive device, either AC fans of solar fans.

      Skeptics, take the smoke test, go in your attic at peak heat time and use a cigarette or some other smoke device and you will see that ridge vents are passive and will not significantly move air as effective as a fan.

      Hot air rises naturally but a solar attic fan moves 850 cfm, much more than a ridge vent will ever do.

      John Miggins
      Harvest Solar & Wind Power
      "renewable solutions to everyday needs"
      www.harvest-energy.com
      Phone/Fax 918-743-2299
      Cell: 918-521-6223

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Karl Rabago
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 7:40 PM
      Subject: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


      This discussion is creating a question for me - Robert said "I'd recommend soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s)"



      I considered adding one or two solar attic fans for my 2004 Energy Star 3,600 sq ft, 2 story "McMansion" in The Woodlands.

      I have BOTH soffit and ridge vents.

      But I talked to some folks who said that the fans would not be worth it - they wouldn't move enough additional air (given the soffits and ridge vents) to justify the cost.

      I did have a radiant barrier sprayed in - couldn't afford to go back in with the perf foil stuff. It has helped.

      And I don't want to create a semi-conditioned space up there (and can't afford it, either).

      SO - what is the right answer for making my house envelope as energy efficient in these matters as I can ?

      And thanks for the great dialogue - I am new to the list but really learning a lot!

      karl

      - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
      Karl R. Rábago
      19 Birchwood Park Pl.
      The Woodlands, Texas 77382
      home tel: 281.298.6429
      cell: 832.723.7443
      eMail: rabago@...

      "Thus, the task is, not so much to see what no one has yet seen, but to think what nobody has yet thought, about that which everybody sees"

      Schrödinger





      ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
      From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John and Mia
      Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 6:15 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


      this is for Robert Johnston,
      Robert... I've been studying the Green Building Initiative which is the next level above Energy Star (it's a new way of homebuilding that re-engineers every step of home building to be more energy efficient and environmentally friendly) as I'm looking into getting a career in that field and while I don't know of any specific professionals in your area but from my research, almost anything else is better compared to paper and rock shingles which doesn't reflect the heat but absorbs it... I'd recommend soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s) and many places on the internet offer good deals on radiant barriers... I don't think you need an architect per say but any good roofer should be able to install a radiant barrier, and install a good roof with adequate ventilation.... you don't need to re-engineer a roof as in change the slope of the roof unless it has inadequate pitch for water to run off...
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Robert Johnston
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 3:26 PM
      Subject: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


      My sister recently moved to the Ardmore, OK area from Washington state. They've bought a house that will need a new roof, and while they are at it they want to increase the energy efficiency of their home. What they need is an architect or other professional that can advise them on (a) the roofing system, including venting, insulation, radiant barrier, metal vs. shingles, etc.; (b) other energy improvements they can make to their house, possibly including solar water heater.



      Do any of you know reputable people that can do that kind of thing?

      Do any of our architects travel that far?

      John Miggins, do you know anybody in that area? (and do you serve that area with your water heater business?)



      Robert Johnston





      SPONSORED LINKS Houston texas attorney Houston texas bankruptcy lawyer Houston texas web site design
      Houston texas mover Houston texas swimming pool builder Houston texas apartment


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    • Karl Rabago
      Thanks John. My house was built by Lennar/Village. The windows are double pane, but not filled. The insulation is good, but I wish I could have come round
      Message 2 of 8 , Feb 5, 2006
      • 0 Attachment
        Thanks John.

        My house was built by Lennar/Village. The windows are double pane, but not filled. The insulation is good, but I wish I could have come round before the sheet rock went in with a can of expanding foam - not the tightest house in the world.

        I found an aftermarket provider for the barrier - it was "Radiance," I think - paint with fine aluminum mixed in. The brochure said 75% effective (compared to 95% for the perf foil). Was advised against touching it - would reduce reflectance, they said. (I don't know, but I don't have much reason to touch it anyway.) They said my performance would be ok, but not as good cuz the house is well insulated. I think I note a diff and have lower bills than any neighbors (only 4 models in our subdivision all built within a year or so of each other, so we have a good data set).

        My big savings come from chosing a house with good orientation - kitchen and living and MB are on the North side - cool and comfy in the summer. MB down is easier to cool. House is way too big for us, we know. We are starting to look for downsizing, but not in a real rush.

        And I have CFLs everywhere - includng the floods.

        Also, got the LG horizontal axis washer - it is great!

        And I am a fiend about keeping my programmable thermostat programmed!

        We don't have beer fridge, but do have a small chest freezer.

        I will look into the fans - and the tip on the air leaks is a great one!


        -----Original Message-----
        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com on behalf of John and Mia
        Sent: Sat 04-Feb-06 9:31 PM
        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????

        Karl,
        this is John and I'm the one who recommended the soffit or ridge vents or both... the soffit and ridge vents along with the plastic round or square domes (the big or little plastic things on top of your roof which replaced the metal spinning things) are all passive devices are the minimum requirements for builders to install... they only work when there is a breeze or alot of heat in the attic and they work on the principle that hot air rises while cold air sinks... so, they only passively remove heat from the attic which can accumulate very rapidly as you well know about Houston area heat... I've seen the solar powered attic fans at Home Depot available with the solar panel for around $150 which moves around 1250 feet of air per minute which would be the equivalent of the entire air content of your attic every 2 or 3 minutes (there is no way to match that kind of performance with any passive device that I know of ) I would think that getting that much air flowing by using a solar powered fan would really help out especially considering how much electricity is going up... a 40% increase for me in Katy within 2 weeks... that would really suck if prices stayed so high during the summer and would really justify spending money on such investments but hopefully as natural gas prices are going down so will electric... just my .02
        one thing I highly recommend for you and everyone else is to look for air leaks in your house that can really increase the amount of money spent to heat homes in winter or cool homes in summer... one real easy way to do this is to go around your house and feel with your hand your electric plugs, light switches and your windows especially around the sides of the windows this works best when there is a good temperature difference between inside and outside and if there is a breeze... when it's cold and windy then you can really feel air coming thru these areas... try to figure out where the air is coming in thru and plug the hole... in my 2005 Energy Star home I've found over 21 areas where air comes in unimpeded which really make a big difference in trying to keep my house warm in the winter... a bunch of little holes add up to one big hole... just because your home is energy star certified doesn't mean you don't have a good amount of air coming thru different areas... and it's not considered a warranty defect unless it causes your home to fail the door blower test used for EnergyStar certification... some things I plan on doing are caulking the entire back and side of my house where the hardiplank boards overlap to help prevent outside air coming in and using the child safety plugs on every single electric outlet to stop air from coming in from outside...
        Karl, just out of curiosity, what type or brand of radiant barrier did you have sprayed in? I plan on doing that soon and am looking for good feedback from actual people who have tried different brands... also out of curiosity, which builder built your McMansion? I've worked as a vendor for new home builders for 4 years all over Houston and my wife currently works for a Homebuilder... we built a Plantation Home and are pretty happy with it... not as big as yours at 2359sqft but plenty of house for us...
        another thing I've done to lower my electric bill was to switch to compact fluorescent lights... they give the same brightness but only use about 25% of the energy as regular light bulbs... the prices have really gone down... you can get great bulk deals on eBay compared to buying them in packs of 5-6 at Home Depot of Lowes... hope this helps. John
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Karl Rabago
        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 7:40 PM
        Subject: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


        This discussion is creating a question for me - Robert said "I'd recommend soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s)"



        I considered adding one or two solar attic fans for my 2004 Energy Star 3,600 sq ft, 2 story "McMansion" in The Woodlands.

        I have BOTH soffit and ridge vents.

        But I talked to some folks who said that the fans would not be worth it - they wouldn't move enough additional air (given the soffits and ridge vents) to justify the cost.

        I did have a radiant barrier sprayed in - couldn't afford to go back in with the perf foil stuff. It has helped.

        And I don't want to create a semi-conditioned space up there (and can't afford it, either).

        SO - what is the right answer for making my house envelope as energy efficient in these matters as I can ?

        And thanks for the great dialogue - I am new to the list but really learning a lot!

        karl

        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        Karl R. Rábago
        19 Birchwood Park Pl.
        The Woodlands, Texas 77382
        home tel: 281.298.6429
        cell: 832.723.7443
        eMail: rabago@...

        "Thus, the task is, not so much to see what no one has yet seen, but to think what nobody has yet thought, about that which everybody sees"

        Schrödinger





        ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John and Mia
        Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 6:15 PM
        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


        this is for Robert Johnston,
        Robert... I've been studying the Green Building Initiative which is the next level above Energy Star (it's a new way of homebuilding that re-engineers every step of home building to be more energy efficient and environmentally friendly) as I'm looking into getting a career in that field and while I don't know of any specific professionals in your area but from my research, almost anything else is better compared to paper and rock shingles which doesn't reflect the heat but absorbs it... I'd recommend soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s) and many places on the internet offer good deals on radiant barriers... I don't think you need an architect per say but any good roofer should be able to install a radiant barrier, and install a good roof with adequate ventilation.... you don't need to re-engineer a roof as in change the slope of the roof unless it has inadequate pitch for water to run off...
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Robert Johnston
        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 3:26 PM
        Subject: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


        My sister recently moved to the Ardmore, OK area from Washington state. They've bought a house that will need a new roof, and while they are at it they want to increase the energy efficiency of their home. What they need is an architect or other professional that can advise them on (a) the roofing system, including venting, insulation, radiant barrier, metal vs. shingles, etc.; (b) other energy improvements they can make to their house, possibly including solar water heater.



        Do any of you know reputable people that can do that kind of thing?

        Do any of our architects travel that far?

        John Miggins, do you know anybody in that area? (and do you serve that area with your water heater business?)



        Robert Johnston





        SPONSORED LINKS Houston texas attorney Houston texas bankruptcy lawyer Houston texas web site design
        Houston texas mover Houston texas swimming pool builder Houston texas apartment


        ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS

        a.. Visit your group "hreg" on the web.

        b.. To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
        hreg-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

        c.. Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.


        ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      • John and Mia
        Karl, thanks for the info... my house is the same way... the best orientation as far as the sun is concerned kit, BK, Living room and Master bath all on north
        Message 3 of 8 , Feb 5, 2006
        • 0 Attachment
          Karl,
          thanks for the info... my house is the same way... the best orientation
          as far as the sun is concerned kit, BK, Living room and Master bath all on
          north side bottom story... so the back of the house where most of my windows
          are constantly in the shade. we just enjoyed breakfast outdoors in the shade
          and after 6 years of living in an apartment it's a great thing to enjoy your
          own home... is your washer one of the front loading ones? I like the
          programmable thermostat in my home as well it's so high tech with a touch
          screen but my favorite setting is off with cool fresh air coming into the
          house thru open windows... I'm taking advantage of that while the weather is
          still so favorable... I love Houston, Texas winters... I'd consider waiting
          on downsizing as the technology is really improving in the Houston area in
          the building industry... more and more builders are changing to a Green
          Building program which re-engineers every single aspect of building homes to
          benefit both the environment and make homes more energy efficient... you
          wouldn't have to worry about sealing anything in these homes as that is a
          standard consideration in this program..that's what we plan on doing with
          our next home... I'd love to buy a "zero energy green building" in the next
          5 or so years... I also think it's great you have other similar homes where
          you can talk to your neighbors to compare results... see how much more they
          are paying... and then feel good when you take the difference and throw it
          to your mortgage to build more equity instead of giving it to the power
          company...
          my wife and I looked into Lennar homes when we were looking into
          building a home but couldn't find a model or location that we were both
          happy with... I think it's a mixed blessing on how they offer "everything
          included" into their homes which can be good but also limiting... especially
          considering that builders mark up everything they install atleast 35% so
          they profit in everything that's included which really adds up... and if you
          are a do it yourselfer you can save a good amount of money by installing
          your own fans and blinds among many other things... I worked as a
          vendor/outside sales for a blinds company for 4 years and if anybody is
          curious as to which types of blinds/ window coverings are the most effective
          in keeping heat out of a home here is my list from personal experience.
          from best to worst:
          1. Plantation Shutters (they are pricey but add elegance to a home normal
          blinds can't and block heat as nothing else can)
          2. Vertical Blinds (they block almost all light and heat very effectively
          but I don't think they look as good as horizontal blinds)
          3. 2" Horizontal blinds ( by far the most popular... in every house I've
          ever installed blinds in, and that is many hundreds of homes, once I put
          these blinds in a closed them I Instantly felt atleast a 10 degree
          difference in the room)
          4. Plastic redi-shades I put these in the windows where my showers are as
          they have no metal parts which can be damaged by very high humidity (rust is
          an ugly thing to deal with in your shower)
          5. Mini blinds (they are cheap and the plastic ones are a joke... the metal
          ones block light but are no where near as good as the above mentioned blinds
          use as a last resort)

          also available are "honeycomb" shades which vary in thickness and ability to
          block light and heat... I have not installed many of these so I didn't put
          them on the list a I don't have enough experience with them to properly rate
          them especially since they are so customizable in thickness but I'd say they
          are atleast as good as the 2" horizontal blinds...

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Karl Rabago" <krabago@...>
          To: <hreg@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Sunday, February 05, 2006 8:11 AM
          Subject: RE: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


          Thanks John.

          My house was built by Lennar/Village. The windows are double pane, but not
          filled. The insulation is good, but I wish I could have come round before
          the sheet rock went in with a can of expanding foam - not the tightest house
          in the world.

          I found an aftermarket provider for the barrier - it was "Radiance," I
          think - paint with fine aluminum mixed in. The brochure said 75% effective
          (compared to 95% for the perf foil). Was advised against touching it - would
          reduce reflectance, they said. (I don't know, but I don't have much reason
          to touch it anyway.) They said my performance would be ok, but not as good
          cuz the house is well insulated. I think I note a diff and have lower bills
          than any neighbors (only 4 models in our subdivision all built within a year
          or so of each other, so we have a good data set).

          My big savings come from chosing a house with good orientation - kitchen and
          living and MB are on the North side - cool and comfy in the summer. MB down
          is easier to cool. House is way too big for us, we know. We are starting to
          look for downsizing, but not in a real rush.

          And I have CFLs everywhere - includng the floods.

          Also, got the LG horizontal axis washer - it is great!

          And I am a fiend about keeping my programmable thermostat programmed!

          We don't have beer fridge, but do have a small chest freezer.

          I will look into the fans - and the tip on the air leaks is a great one!


          -----Original Message-----
          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com on behalf of John and Mia
          Sent: Sat 04-Feb-06 9:31 PM
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????

          Karl,
          this is John and I'm the one who recommended the soffit or ridge vents
          or both... the soffit and ridge vents along with the plastic round or square
          domes (the big or little plastic things on top of your roof which replaced
          the metal spinning things) are all passive devices are the minimum
          requirements for builders to install... they only work when there is a
          breeze or alot of heat in the attic and they work on the principle that hot
          air rises while cold air sinks... so, they only passively remove heat from
          the attic which can accumulate very rapidly as you well know about Houston
          area heat... I've seen the solar powered attic fans at Home Depot available
          with the solar panel for around $150 which moves around 1250 feet of air per
          minute which would be the equivalent of the entire air content of your attic
          every 2 or 3 minutes (there is no way to match that kind of performance with
          any passive device that I know of ) I would think that getting that much air
          flowing by using a solar powered fan would really help out especially
          considering how much electricity is going up... a 40% increase for me in
          Katy within 2 weeks... that would really suck if prices stayed so high
          during the summer and would really justify spending money on such
          investments but hopefully as natural gas prices are going down so will
          electric... just my .02
          one thing I highly recommend for you and everyone else is to look for
          air leaks in your house that can really increase the amount of money spent
          to heat homes in winter or cool homes in summer... one real easy way to do
          this is to go around your house and feel with your hand your electric plugs,
          light switches and your windows especially around the sides of the windows
          this works best when there is a good temperature difference between inside
          and outside and if there is a breeze... when it's cold and windy then you
          can really feel air coming thru these areas... try to figure out where the
          air is coming in thru and plug the hole... in my 2005 Energy Star home I've
          found over 21 areas where air comes in unimpeded which really make a big
          difference in trying to keep my house warm in the winter... a bunch of
          little holes add up to one big hole... just because your home is energy star
          certified doesn't mean you don't have a good amount of air coming thru
          different areas... and it's not considered a warranty defect unless it
          causes your home to fail the door blower test used for EnergyStar
          certification... some things I plan on doing are caulking the entire back
          and side of my house where the hardiplank boards overlap to help prevent
          outside air coming in and using the child safety plugs on every single
          electric outlet to stop air from coming in from outside...
          Karl, just out of curiosity, what type or brand of radiant barrier did
          you have sprayed in? I plan on doing that soon and am looking for good
          feedback from actual people who have tried different brands... also out of
          curiosity, which builder built your McMansion? I've worked as a vendor for
          new home builders for 4 years all over Houston and my wife currently works
          for a Homebuilder... we built a Plantation Home and are pretty happy with
          it... not as big as yours at 2359sqft but plenty of house for us...
          another thing I've done to lower my electric bill was to switch to compact
          fluorescent lights... they give the same brightness but only use about 25%
          of the energy as regular light bulbs... the prices have really gone down...
          you can get great bulk deals on eBay compared to buying them in packs of 5-6
          at Home Depot of Lowes... hope this helps. John
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Karl Rabago
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 7:40 PM
          Subject: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


          This discussion is creating a question for me - Robert said "I'd recommend
          soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s)"



          I considered adding one or two solar attic fans for my 2004 Energy Star
          3,600 sq ft, 2 story "McMansion" in The Woodlands.

          I have BOTH soffit and ridge vents.

          But I talked to some folks who said that the fans would not be worth it -
          they wouldn't move enough additional air (given the soffits and ridge vents)
          to justify the cost.

          I did have a radiant barrier sprayed in - couldn't afford to go back in
          with the perf foil stuff. It has helped.

          And I don't want to create a semi-conditioned space up there (and can't
          afford it, either).

          SO - what is the right answer for making my house envelope as energy
          efficient in these matters as I can ?

          And thanks for the great dialogue - I am new to the list but really
          learning a lot!

          karl

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
          Karl R. Rábago
          19 Birchwood Park Pl.
          The Woodlands, Texas 77382
          home tel: 281.298.6429
          cell: 832.723.7443
          eMail: rabago@...

          "Thus, the task is, not so much to see what no one has yet seen, but to
          think what nobody has yet thought, about that which everybody sees"

          Schrödinger





          ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John
          and Mia
          Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 6:15 PM
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


          this is for Robert Johnston,
          Robert... I've been studying the Green Building Initiative which is
          the next level above Energy Star (it's a new way of homebuilding that
          re-engineers every step of home building to be more energy efficient and
          environmentally friendly) as I'm looking into getting a career in that field
          and while I don't know of any specific professionals in your area but from
          my research, almost anything else is better compared to paper and rock
          shingles which doesn't reflect the heat but absorbs it... I'd recommend
          soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s) and
          many places on the internet offer good deals on radiant barriers... I don't
          think you need an architect per say but any good roofer should be able to
          install a radiant barrier, and install a good roof with adequate
          ventilation.... you don't need to re-engineer a roof as in change the slope
          of the roof unless it has inadequate pitch for water to run off...
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Robert Johnston
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 3:26 PM
          Subject: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


          My sister recently moved to the Ardmore, OK area from Washington
          state. They've bought a house that will need a new roof, and while they are
          at it they want to increase the energy efficiency of their home. What they
          need is an architect or other professional that can advise them on (a) the
          roofing system, including venting, insulation, radiant barrier, metal vs.
          shingles, etc.; (b) other energy improvements they can make to their house,
          possibly including solar water heater.



          Do any of you know reputable people that can do that kind of thing?

          Do any of our architects travel that far?

          John Miggins, do you know anybody in that area? (and do you serve
          that area with your water heater business?)



          Robert Johnston





          SPONSORED LINKS Houston texas attorney Houston texas bankruptcy lawyer
          Houston texas web site design
          Houston texas mover Houston texas swimming pool builder Houston
          texas apartment


          ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
          YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS

          a.. Visit your group "hreg" on the web.

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        • Karl Rabago
          John, The washer is a front loader - both water and energy efficient. We don t do the loads we used to now the kids are gone, but it cleans better, too. I can
          Message 4 of 8 , Feb 5, 2006
          • 0 Attachment
            John,
             
            The washer is a front loader - both water and energy efficient. We don't do the loads we used to now the kids are gone, but it cleans better, too.
             
            I can echo the blinds comments. I had good success with the honeycomb shades in Minnesota - properly sized and installed, they create an insulating layer of  dead air. The nice thing about the orientation decision is that with the South side facing the street, we get the appearance and energy benefits of full plantation shutters - but only need them on the street side. Ordinary 2-inch blinds on the north side give us privacy and access to opening windows.
             
            Waiting for the new tech makes a lot of sense - I will discuss with the boss ("She Who Must Be Obeyed").
             
            karl
            --------------------------------------------------------
             
             


            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John and Mia
            Sent: Sunday, February 05, 2006 12:10 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????

            Karl,
                thanks for the info... my house is the same way... the best orientation
            as far as the sun is concerned kit, BK, Living room and Master bath all on
            north side bottom story... so the back of the house where most of my windows
            are constantly in the shade. we just enjoyed breakfast outdoors in the shade
            and after 6 years of living in an apartment it's a great thing to enjoy your
            own home... is your washer one of the front loading ones?  I like the
            programmable thermostat in my home as well it's so high tech with a touch
            screen but my favorite setting is off with cool fresh air coming into the
            house thru open windows... I'm taking advantage of that while the weather is
            still so favorable... I love Houston, Texas winters... I'd consider waiting
            on downsizing as the technology is really improving in the Houston area in
            the building industry... more and more builders are changing to a Green
            Building program which re-engineers every single aspect of building homes to
            benefit both the environment and make homes more energy efficient... you
            wouldn't have to worry about sealing anything in these homes as that is a
            standard consideration in this program..that's what we plan on doing with
            our next home... I'd love to buy a "zero energy green building" in the next
            5 or so years... I also think it's great you have other similar homes where
            you can talk to your neighbors to compare results... see how much more they
            are paying... and then feel good when you take the difference and throw it
            to your mortgage to build more equity instead of giving it to the power
            company...
                 my wife and I looked into Lennar homes when we were looking into
            building a home but couldn't find a model or location that we were both
            happy with... I think it's a mixed blessing on how they offer "everything
            included" into their homes which can be good but also limiting... especially
            considering that builders mark up everything they install atleast 35% so
            they profit in everything that's included which really adds up... and if you
            are a do it yourselfer you can save a good amount of money by installing
            your own fans and blinds among many other things... I worked as a
            vendor/outside sales for a blinds company for  4 years and if anybody is
            curious as to which types of blinds/ window coverings are the most effective
            in keeping  heat out of a home here is my list from personal experience.
            from best to worst:
            1. Plantation Shutters (they are pricey but add elegance to a home normal
            blinds can't and block heat as nothing else can)
            2. Vertical Blinds (they block almost all light and heat very effectively
            but I don't think they look as good as horizontal blinds)
            3. 2" Horizontal blinds ( by far the most popular... in every house I've
            ever installed blinds in, and that is many hundreds of homes, once I put
            these blinds in a closed them I Instantly felt atleast a 10 degree
            difference in the room)
            4. Plastic redi-shades I put these in the windows where my showers are as
            they have no metal parts which can be damaged by very high humidity (rust is
            an ugly thing to deal with in your shower)
            5. Mini blinds (they are cheap and the plastic ones are a joke... the metal
            ones block light but are no where near as good as the above mentioned blinds
            use as a last resort)

            also available are "honeycomb" shades which vary in thickness and ability to
            block light and heat... I have not installed many of these so I didn't put
            them on the list a I don't have enough experience with them to properly rate
            them especially since they are so customizable in thickness but I'd say they
            are atleast as good as the 2" horizontal blinds...

            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "Karl Rabago" <krabago@...>
            To: <hreg@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Sunday, February 05, 2006 8:11 AM
            Subject: RE: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


            Thanks John.

            My house was built by Lennar/Village. The windows are double pane, but not
            filled. The insulation is good, but I wish I could have come round before
            the sheet rock went in with a can of expanding foam - not the tightest house
            in the world.

            I found an aftermarket provider for the barrier - it was "Radiance," I
            think - paint with fine aluminum mixed in. The brochure said 75% effective
            (compared to 95% for the perf foil). Was advised against touching it - would
            reduce reflectance, they said. (I don't know, but I don't have much reason
            to touch it anyway.) They said my performance would be ok, but not as good
            cuz the house is well insulated. I think I note a diff and have lower bills
            than any neighbors (only 4 models in our subdivision all built within a year
            or so of each other, so we have a good data set).

            My big savings come from chosing a house with good orientation - kitchen and
            living and MB are on the North side - cool and comfy in the summer. MB down
            is easier to cool. House is way too big for us, we know. We are starting to
            look for downsizing, but not in a real rush.

            And I have CFLs everywhere - includng the floods.

            Also, got the LG horizontal axis washer - it is great!

            And I am a fiend about keeping my programmable thermostat programmed!

            We don't have beer fridge, but do have a small chest freezer.

            I will look into the fans - and the tip on the air leaks is a great one!


            -----Original Message-----
            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com on behalf of John and Mia
            Sent: Sat 04-Feb-06 9:31 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????

            Karl,
                this is John and I'm the one who recommended the soffit or ridge vents
            or both... the soffit and ridge vents along with the plastic round or square
            domes (the big or little plastic things on top of your roof which replaced
            the metal spinning things) are all passive devices are the minimum
            requirements for builders to install... they only work when there is a
            breeze or alot of heat in the attic and they work on the principle that hot
            air rises while cold air sinks... so, they only passively remove heat from
            the attic which can accumulate very rapidly as you well know about Houston
            area heat... I've seen the solar powered attic fans at Home Depot available
            with the solar panel for around $150 which moves around 1250 feet of air per
            minute which would be the equivalent of the entire air content of your attic
            every 2 or 3 minutes (there is no way to match that kind of performance with
            any passive device that I know of ) I would think that getting that much air
            flowing by using a solar powered fan would really help out especially
            considering how much electricity is going up... a 40% increase for me in
            Katy within 2 weeks... that would really suck if prices stayed so high
            during the summer and would really justify spending money on such
            investments but hopefully as natural gas prices are going down so will
            electric... just my .02
                one thing I highly recommend for you and everyone else is to look for
            air leaks in your house that can really increase the amount of money spent
            to heat homes in winter or cool homes in summer... one real easy way to do
            this is to go around your house and feel with your hand your electric plugs,
            light switches and your windows especially around the sides of the windows
            this works best when there is a good temperature difference between inside
            and outside and if there is a breeze... when it's cold and windy then you
            can really feel air coming thru these areas... try to figure out where the
            air is coming in thru and plug the hole... in my 2005 Energy Star home I've
            found over 21 areas where air comes in unimpeded which really make a big
            difference in trying to keep my house warm in the winter... a bunch of
            little holes add up to one big hole... just because your home is energy star
            certified doesn't mean you don't have a good amount of air coming thru
            different areas... and it's not considered a warranty defect unless it
            causes your home to fail the door blower test used for EnergyStar
            certification... some things I plan on doing are caulking the entire back
            and side of my house where the hardiplank boards overlap to help prevent
            outside air coming in and using the child safety plugs on every single
            electric outlet to stop air from coming in from outside...
                Karl, just out of curiosity, what type or brand of radiant barrier did
            you have sprayed in? I plan on doing that soon and am looking for good
            feedback from actual people who have tried different brands... also out of
            curiosity, which builder built your McMansion? I've worked as a vendor for
            new home builders for 4 years all over Houston and my wife currently works
            for a Homebuilder... we built a Plantation Home and are pretty happy with
            it... not as big as yours at 2359sqft but plenty of house for us...
            another thing I've done to lower my electric bill was to switch to compact
            fluorescent lights... they give the same brightness but only use about 25%
            of the energy as regular light bulbs... the prices have really gone down...
            you can get great bulk deals on eBay compared to buying them in packs of 5-6
            at Home Depot of Lowes... hope this helps. John
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Karl Rabago
              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 7:40 PM
              Subject: [hreg] Soffit Vents AND Fans?????


              This discussion is creating a question for me - Robert said "I'd recommend
            soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s)"



              I considered adding one or two solar attic fans for my 2004 Energy Star
            3,600 sq ft, 2 story "McMansion" in The Woodlands.

              I have BOTH soffit and ridge vents.

              But I talked to some folks who said that the fans would not be worth it -
            they wouldn't move enough additional air (given the soffits and ridge vents)
            to justify the cost.

              I did have a radiant barrier sprayed in - couldn't afford to go back in
            with the perf foil stuff. It has helped.

              And I don't want to create a semi-conditioned space up there (and can't
            afford it, either).

              SO - what is the right answer for making my house envelope as energy
            efficient in these matters as I can ?

              And thanks for the great dialogue - I am new to the list but really
            learning a lot!

              karl

              - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
              Karl R. Rábago
              19 Birchwood Park Pl.
              The Woodlands, Texas 77382
              home tel: 281.298.6429
              cell: 832.723.7443
              eMail: rabago@...

              "Thus, the task is, not so much to see what no one has yet seen, but to
            think what nobody has yet thought, about that which everybody sees"

              Schrödinger





            ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John
            and Mia
              Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 6:15 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


              this is for Robert Johnston,
                  Robert... I've been studying the Green Building Initiative which is
            the next level above Energy Star (it's a new way of homebuilding that
            re-engineers every step of home building to be more energy efficient and
            environmentally friendly) as I'm looking into getting a career in that field
            and while I don't know of any specific professionals in your area but from
            my research, almost anything else is better compared to paper and rock
            shingles which doesn't reflect the heat but absorbs it... I'd recommend
            soffit or ridge vents or both along with a solar powered attic fan(s) and
            many places on the internet offer good deals on radiant barriers... I don't
            think you need an architect per say but any good roofer should be able to
            install a radiant barrier,  and install a good roof with adequate
            ventilation.... you don't need to re-engineer a roof as in change the slope
            of the roof unless it has inadequate pitch for water to run off...
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: Robert Johnston
                To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Saturday, February 04, 2006 3:26 PM
                Subject: [hreg] Southern Oklahoma architects/desigers/contractors


                  My sister recently moved to the Ardmore, OK area from Washington
            state.  They've bought a house that will need a new roof, and while they are
            at it they want to increase the energy efficiency of their home.  What they
            need is an architect or other professional that can advise them on (a) the
            roofing system, including venting, insulation, radiant barrier, metal vs.
            shingles, etc.; (b) other energy improvements they can make to their house,
            possibly including solar water heater.



                  Do any of you know reputable people that can do that kind of thing?

                  Do any of our architects travel that far?

                  John Miggins, do you know anybody in that area?  (and do you serve
            that area with your water heater business?)



                  Robert Johnston





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