Contributors: May/June 2014
April 30, 2014
A version of this article appears in the May/June 2014 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
While working on the project, and the article, Hoener realized one major takeaway. “We learned the hazards of focusing primarily on the generation system—solar heat collection and storage—and not paying enough attention to the system as a whole, including distribution and end use,” says Hoener.
What you didn’t know about him: “I worked on the Alaska Pipeline from beginning to finish and for many years after its start-up. During most of that time, and for nearly a decade, I lived without either electricity or plumbing. In addition, my wife and I founded a worldwide magazine on dog-powered activities called Mushing Magazine, which we published for 18 years.”
“Energy Retrofit of a Typical Three-Story Multifamily Building: Measured Results and Lessons Learned”
It’s rare that the energy savings you predict and the energy savings you get are even close. But in a multifamily retrofit described in the Lyons article, the resulting energy savings, based on monitoring and utility bills, were 83% of the savings predicted.
What you didn’t know about him: “One of my first projects involved designing a test system to measure the building envelope UA value [overall heat transfer coefficient] and involved more than 800 lb of equipment. I usually stayed up most of the night watching over the system. I remember a lot of tasty dinners from the local 24-hour gas station during that project.” (Yuck!)
The Chicago bungalow is an ideal home for efficiency upgrades because of its prevalence, homogeneity, and energy use, and because it is still structurally and functionally relevant today. “Bungalows can stand the test of time,” says Scheu. She was surprised “at the number of homeowners who retired after they completed the upgrades.” Retrofit fatigue?
What you didn’t know about her: Scheu doesn’t own a bungalow, “but I have a frame worker’s cottage that was built in 1898 that I’ve been slowly DIY rehabbing (energy efficiently, of course) since I bought it in 2000.”
Burns was disappointed that homeowners were not realizing the utility savings that were modeled. However, after follow-up site visits, “we have found that homeowners value the increased comfort as much as they value the increased savings [even though the savings are not what they had expected].”
What you didn’t know about her: “While I have been overseeing energy efficiency programs at HCBA for three years, my background is in building preservation,” says Burns. “By making historic buildings more comfortable and affordable through energy efficiency retrofits, we also preserve them.”
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