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Bay View, Carmel: A Very Water- And Energy-Efficient Retrofit

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December 28, 2015

It’s not every day that we get to work on our dream house… from a sustainability point of view. But that's what happened when we took on this remodel. On this project, ... [continue reading]

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Blogs By Author
Unlocking the Power of Grey Water

Unlocking the Power of Grey Water

Rob Nicely

Along with this blog, Carmel Building & Design is introducing the first in a series ofvideosthat showcase aspects of what they're doing in this Carmel Point home. [continue reading]

Taking on the Living Building Challenge

Taking on the Living Building Challenge

Rob Nicely

We consider ourselves lucky because we have clients who not only want to incorporate sustainable building practices into their home, but they fully embrace the latest and highest standards. We’re currently working with a couple on a complete remodel of their Carmel Point home, applying the principles of Living Building Challenge (LBC) and aiming for LBC net zero energy certification. [continue reading]

Hot Water at any Faucet in 3 to 5 Seconds

Hot Water at any Faucet in 3 to 5 Seconds

Rob Nicely

Studies show that the average home wastes more than 3,650 gallons a year waiting for the hot water to make it to the faucet. And, according to the EPA, about 15% of the energy used in conventional hot water delivery systems is wasted. That’s an unnecessary burden on your client's energy budget as well as on our area’s limited water supply and other natural resources. [continue reading]

A Green Way to Insulate for Extreme Energy Efficiency

A Green Way to Insulate for Extreme Energy Efficiency

Rob Nicely

Back in the '70s, California’s Title 24 revised the state’s building code to include limits for energy usage in built environments. The go-to solution for stemming the amount of energy required for heating and cooling quickly became insulation. For decades, the most frequently used type of insulation was fiberglass batt, laid between framing in walls and ceilings. To work effectively, insulation has to completely stop the movement of air. The fiberglass ... [continue reading]

A Fresh Look at Heating and Cooling the Home

A Fresh Look at Heating and Cooling the Home

Rob Nicely

Nothing gobbles up energy—and eats away at a homeowner’s budget—like heating and cooling the home’s interior. Considering the number of points in a traditionally-built home where air—along with the money you’ve spent to warm it up—leaks in and out, dad’s classic question of, “Are you trying to heat the outdoors?” comes to mind. [continue reading]

Thinking Out Loud

Thinking Out Loud

Rob Nicely

Anyone who has read a blog, sat in on one of my presentations, or been a client of Carmel Building & Design knows that I’m passionate about sustainable building. The passion stems from a desire to take what I’ve learned about human impact on the environment over the past 25 years and apply it to my chosen profession. But, it’s not just a way to satisfy my need to address the ... [continue reading]

To Certify or Not to Certify? A Good Question

To Certify or Not to Certify? A Good Question

Rob Nicely

Our rationale of following the path of Passive House, LEED, Zero Net Energy, Living Building Challenge or other specific set of guidelines is not to achieve a certification to have in our portfolio. These programs provide standards that achieve a better quality home with high energy efficiency, interior spaces that are comfortable, have healthy air quality and are quiet, yield a durable home that has a lower carbon footprint and is kinder to the planet, ... [continue reading]

Side Benefits of a Passive House

Side Benefits of a Passive House

Rob Nicely

There’s no doubt that building to Passive House standards results in energy consumption that’s about 70 to 80 percent less than what you’d expect from a traditionally built home (or school, or office building, or factory…you get the picture). That’s due in part to the fact that the home is air tight, super-insulated and uses a heat recovery ventilation system that exhausts air (and moisture) and replaces ... [continue reading]

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