Home energy use and savings

Discussion in 'Green Energy and Sustenance Living' started by inspectorD, Jan 14, 2008.

  1. Jan 14, 2008 #1

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

    Housebroken Staff Member Admin Moderator

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    Energy is at a premium, saving it is your way to help beat it. Without going into saving the earth, you could do your part by checking out www.energysavers.gov for some practical ways to save a buck or the earth. Whatever your take on it, I just want to start a thread to help folks out....post em if you got em.:D
     
  2. Jan 14, 2008 #2

    glennjanie

    glennjanie

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    Good Morning 'D':
    We are adding vinyl siding with the foam insulation, attic insulation and the rest of our storm windows, for starters.
    We already have the Toyota Prius, Geothermal Heat Pump, CFL bulbs and energy star appliances. We are trying to help 'Poor Ol Al' to save the planet but I don't see us getting our own private jet anytime soon.
    I also have a business plan to change chicken litter to Neat Diesel; or any other organic matter, we just have hundreds of chicken houses in Western Kentucky with 25,000 chickens in each one, each chicken producing 2 1/2 pounds of litter in a lifetime. Of course, a plan on paper has nothing to do with saving energy.
    Glenn
     
  3. Jan 18, 2008 #3

    Adk

    Adk

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    Man created clothing for a reason. God created your birthday suit for another reason. Wear clothing, within reason, when you should. Take clothing off, within reason LOL, when you should.
    If it's 90 outside you should not be walking around your house in a long sleeved shirt with your AC on.
    Wearing a short sleeved shirt in a house during the winter just means that you have your heat turned up to an excessive level or that you can afford your monthly fuel bill and don't care.
    I've been guilty of doing both in the past. It's time we use our heads if we care.
     
  4. Jan 18, 2008 #4

    phreaq

    phreaq

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    I am doing my best to cut my bottom line costs to 'run' my house. The fact that Mother Nature benefits is a bonus (sure, I'm selfish :))

    I've replaced my 300 watt lights with CFLs, looking into wood as a heat source (instead of my current oil), sealed all my windows with removable caulk for the winter, and improving insulation everywhere. I also bought one of the energy meters that you plug into the wall, and then plug your appliance, lights, whatever into to see its load. It measures amp/watts/volts and does all the related math for you. You can even add your kw/hr cost to get a dollar value for the appliance in use. I bought it more for interest sake. I sleep better knowing my daily coffee costs 0.7 cents, and my superb rotisserie chicken that takes 1 1/2 hr to make only costs 7.8 cents :D

    Glenn, by no means do I want to go into too much depth here, but there is a lot of conflicting data on the Prius, in terms of it's environmental footprint. It may be more efficient once it's built, but the energy needed and used to create the batteries, and to eventually dispose of them, outweighs some of the benefits.
     
  5. Jan 19, 2008 #5

    guyod

    guyod

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    Interesting i never heard of that before

    sounds like alot more plumbing though and with the price of copper ouch. I dont want my cold water warm . so i guess you would have to run 2 lines.

    It would be something to concider in a new contruction or major remodel coupled along with a tankless hot water heater.

    I would like to see where the pipes combine and seperate. must look odd. i cant image what would be going through my head if i seen that in a house with out first reading this..

    thanks for the info..
     
  6. Jan 19, 2008 #6

    guyod

    guyod

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    Thanks for the links. Going through only a 6 foot section makes more sense.

    im seems more practical for motels like it says on the site. i dont see how it can pay for it self when a hot water heater only costs $400 a year to run.
    and it is heating water over 120 degree and holds it there 24hours a day.

    this thing only heats water an hour or 2 a day 10 by 20 degrees.

    it seems like something to do just to be green.

    thats just my opinion though
     
  7. Jan 19, 2008 #7

    ToolGuy

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    That's pretty interesting. I left a comment but here it is verbatum for discussion:

    The design for DWHR seems simple enough. At a cost of $600 to $800, I would think one could make their own with some copper tubing. Making the bend without kinking the tubing might be a little tricky, but at the price of buying the unit, I would figure out a way. Also seems wraping it in insulation would be beneficial, making it more efficient. Just some thoughts.
     
  8. Jan 20, 2008 #8

    glennjanie

    glennjanie

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    That 'Drain Water Heat Recovery' sounds like using some waste heat for replenishing but I see too much possibility of cross connection, which polutes the fresh water with the waste water. I can't see our state plumbing code allowing this type of hook-up. A pipe in a pipe presents too much risk of 'wear-through' from expansion and contraction.

    Phreaq:
    We have had our Prius since December 6, 2005 and are still proud of it.It is paid for now too! I saw Toyota's site today talking about an advanced Prius with double batteries, half the weight, and double the mileage. It can be plugged in and will not use any motor fuel for the first 100 miles; some folks can get to work and back on that. The body uses a lot of the carbon fiber content for less weight and more strength.
    But then, Janie and I are Toyota fanatics and believe almost anything they say. We have run 2 Camrys for over 250,000 miles and have owned several others too. Plus, I have a nephew in R&D at the Toyota plant in Georgetown, KY so we get some inside info from him.
    Glenn
     
  9. Jan 20, 2008 #9

    travelover

    travelover

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    I'm skeptical that recovering heat from grey water is worth the effort. I know what my gas bills are in summer, so I know my water heating costs- small. Considering this would only recover a small fraction of that heat, it doesn't seem cost effective.

    I have seen grey water reused for watering landscape and that seems easier and more useful, especially in drier areas of the country.
     
  10. Jan 23, 2008 #10

    glennjanie

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    Hello Educator:
    Copper comes several different ways: soft (in a coil), hard copper which comes in straight lengths, classified as K, L, M and DWV. The Drain Waste and Vent copper is the thinnest grade, obviously it doesn't carry pressure. The other 3 types all have the same outside dimensions but the grades are thicker or thinner. L is the most used grade of copper for water lines and comes in both coil and straight lengths. L is also the type used for HVAC-R, the only difference is the tube has been evacuated and capped to prevent oxidation inside.
    Kentucky's Plumbing Department is deadly serious about cross-connections, back flow and back pressure. It is so important to us that I used to give my students the day off if they could quote (word for word) the definition of cross-connection. One of them really worked at it; he even quoted it backward without missing a word.
    In the case of the DWHR one of the lines is already violated (the drain) and the supply line may not always have pressure on it; thus the possibility of backflow.
    Glenn
     
  11. Apr 13, 2008 #11

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    So what are your plans this year to save some energy.
    Prices and materials are only going to keep rising!!!

    My Out-laws are installing a solar electric system on their home this month. My brother in law already has one he put in 2 years ago. His return on investment is going to be 4 more years because of the rising utility rates. Not bad for a 30 year system.
    I want to install one ...but my goal is a total efficiency home. The old albatross we own now is not worth the system, I have done all that is required for this place. So I will be working on building a new home in 5 years, that is the plan anyway.

    Spring is here and winter is only 8 months away...what will you do?
     
  12. Sep 10, 2008 #12

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    Now it's fall, hope you all are not playing catchup.,:D

    Insulation and air leaks are where to start. Try www.nuwool.com for a good insulation material. I am starting to think it is better than the foams out there due to some testing I have seen.

    Do something...energy will be high.:eek:
     
  13. Sep 10, 2008 #13

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    Thanks Educator for putting all that time into your projects and sharing.
    At least you are not selling anything to us folks here.:)

    I love this subject , and wish more folks where on board.:)
    Folks would rather spend $100 a month on cable TV than spend the $1200 it takes to put some better insulation in the attic.
    Someday we will all be there, but unfortunately it will take a while.:(
     
  14. Dec 1, 2008 #14

    Robin F

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    We find that we don't have to crank on the AC if we just run a fan in the room where we're sitting. It seems to help- the thermostat is usually at 80 degrees or higher in the summer and we're still comfortable. Of course, there's only 2 of us, so we don't have to worry about keeping multiple rooms in the house cool.
     
  15. Dec 3, 2008 #15

    ALCHYMIST

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    Probably the best way to do this is with two separate coils, one for wastewater and one for potable, both of which are installed in a small tank filled with a transfer medium, such as RV antifreeze. In order for wastewater to contaminate the potable water, both coils would have to leak. Either one leaking would cause a level change in the transfer medium. As to cost effective??? Perhaps, perhaps not.
     
  16. Feb 16, 2009 #16

    GreenIsGood

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    Use a thermal carafe! When your coffee maker is done brewing your morning pot of java, instead of leaving it on the heated plate or in the heated percolator, simply pour the hot coffee into a thermal, insulated carafe. Then turn off the coffee maker. A good thermal carafe will keep your coffee piping hot for a couple of hours – much longer than is usually necessary.
     

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