2014 Habitat for Humanity Builders Blitz Is Underway
June 5, 2014
Moving into the Evergreen: Green Living
March 19, 2011
Two Homes, One Week
June 19, 2014
Energy Saving Ways to Heat/Cool Your Home
November 10, 2014
With an increase in green building throughout the United States, new energy saving technologies are breaking into the market faster than before, while other traditional energy-saving methods being used more and more. The two technologies I’ll be cover in this issue, we’ll be installing in homes in Winter Park soon.
A few months ago I wrote about some unique energy saving technologies that are currently available. Another cool technology was just launched this summer by Nest, the maker of the popular, energy-saving, self-learning thermostat.
This same technology has now been integrated in other aspects of homes - such as fans. Big Ass Fans in conjunction with Nest, released its SenseME technology, allowing their fans to work along side a Nest thermostat. Through the same learning technology, the SenseMe fan kicks on when someone enters a room and also learns their desired fan speed. In addition, both the fan and the Nest thermostat “talk to one another” learning about household energy saving preferences, allowing them to adjust accordingly to any lifestyle. We plan on installing this fan and thermostat in an upcoming project in Winter Park.
Geothermal Heating/Cooling Systems
Geothermal heating and cooling systems have been around for more than 50 years. However, until now we haven’t seen it much in Central Florida. This year alone, e2 Homes will be installing Geothermal heating and cooling systems in two custom home projects in Winter Park.
Geothermal systems do not heat or cool your home by burning fossil fuels or using electricity the way you are typically used to. Instead, they use electricity to access the near-constant temperatures found deep in the earth by circulating fluid into the ground water and through a coil that absorbs or dissipates heat depending on the season.
In cold weather, your home is warmed by heat brought in from the earth, and during the summer months, your home is cooled by the movement of heat from your home back into the earth.
There are two types of geothermal systems available, open and closed. Open systems are connected directly to a large source of ground water, where closed systems consist of continuous underground piping filled with coolant. Closed systems include Lake/Pond Loop, Horizontal Loop and Vertical Loops. In order to determine the best system for your home, you’ll want to take into consideration the climate in your area, soil condition, available land and local installation costs of your property.
· Open Loop – Uses well or surface body water (lake/pond) as a heating source. It circulates directly through the geothermal unit and returns back to its original well or surface body location.
· Lake Loop – Uses the water in a nearby lake or pond to absorb or gather heat with the help of supply line pipes filled with coolant that are coiled at least eight feet under ground.
· Horizontal Loop – When plenty of space is available, this system is generally most cost-effective for residential use. The heat transfer tubes filled with coolant are not buried as deep, and extend out rather than down.
· Vertical Loop – When space is limited, a vertical loop system is used. This system is typically used for larger commercial buildings. Heat transfer tubes filled with coolant are drilled approximately 100 – 140 feet deep into the earth, 20 feet apart.
Although a geothermal system is generally more cost effective in heating and cooling your home, there are other uses for it too. At our projects in Winter Park, we’ll be installing open and lake loop systems, which will not only help cool and heat the home, but also help heat the water for the house and pool.
Many people choose this alternative way to heat and cool their homes due to the energy saving costs (approximately 30 percent) and also to help reduce their carbon footprint. There is a federal incentive for installing a geothermal system, which can help make it cost effective.