Natural Ventilation and Passive Smoke Control Systems: Video

Blending nature with the sophistication of modern architecture, natural ventilation is both cost and energy-efficient. Natural ventilation systems harness wind and heat to create a comfortable and healthy internal environment with optimal temperature and humidity levels and good IAQ.

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Beyond the Energy Code: Worth It?

Updates to building codes plus consumer demand for energy-efficient homes presents an opportunity to position your homes above the rest. Get the most bang for your buck. In this webinar, learn what areas are worth it to focus on when you go above and beyond the energy codes.

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Energy Calculator

The Milgard Energy Calculator provides a quick and easy way to help you select windows and doors that can meet local energy codes and project requirements.

The tool gives you the flexibility to select the required ENERGY STAR® zone, u-factor, SHGC or VT, and determine which Milgard window and door products meet the selected requirements.

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Residential Water Heaters under the New 2015 Federal Standards

Water heaters are often the second largest energy user in the home, costing residents hundreds of dollars each year. Beginning in April 2015, the updated “NAECA” standards from the U.S. Department of Energy increased water heater efficiency requirements, driving major product changes in the U.S. market. “NAECA” stands for the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act and includes the federal regulations for water heater minimum efficiency levels.

The course reviews the new federal standards for water heaters, and describes the market implications for both new construction and replacements.

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Specifying Propane Standby Generators: Installation and Value Considerations

In the last 10 years, the demand for electricity has increased exponentially due to population growth and the increased use of power-thirsty devices, such as computers and flat-screen TVs.

For homeowners in many areas, this has resulted in electrical service outages that cause major disruptions. A standby generator can ensure a homeowner's quality of life by keeping the electricity flowing in the event of a power failure, and it can even serve as a primary energy source for homes built off the grid.

In this course, learn why many builders and homeowners are choosing to install propane standby generators and what to consider when selecting the best generator for the job.

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Propane-Enhanced Renewable Energy Systems

Most American homeowners, now acutely aware of fluctuating energy prices and the environmental implications associated with continued use of some conventional energy sources, are driving a demand for alternative energy sources for their homes. As a construction professional, it is up to you to propose alternative energy systems to be used in your homes.

In this course, learn why propane is an ideal backup energy source for a wide range of renewable energy systems.

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Analysis of Residential Energy Efficiency Upgrades

The energy use of a home varies widely depending on a number of factors, including the climate, number of occupants, resident behavior, and mechanical systems. Because there are so many contributing factors, decisions on where and when to invest in energy-efficient equipment can be tricky for a homeowner, especially when it comes to paying a premium for higher efficiency equipment.

In this course, which focuses on the typical energy use for average, single-family detached households, learn more about what factors to take into account when considering an upgrade of a home’s energy system or appliances.

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Why Exceed the Code: Maximizing Energy and Cost Savings in Pipe Insulation

Thermal insulation aids in stabilizing process temperatures; can minimize moisture condensation on below ambient temperature piping surfaces; increases fire protection; and contributes to noise abatement. Personnel protection against burn injury is a major benefit from thermal insulation. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires that “all exposed steam and hot-water pipes within 7 feet of the floor or working platform or within 15 inches measured horizontally from stairways, ramps, or fixed ladders shall be covered with an insulating material, or guarded in such manner as to prevent contact. In addition, the Insulation Institute provides other succinct reasons for insulating pipes beyond many current state and local code thickness requirements.

ASHRAE 90.1 minimum pipe insulation thicknesses are required for compliance with energy-efficient building design relative to many new buildings, building additions, and retrofit construction. A vapor retarder, which is required in addition to the insulation, will further reduce the likelihood of corrosion due to condensation on cold pipes. Finally, while insulation cannot prevent standing water in pipes from freezing, it can slow the process. This course will enable learners to analyze material types that may ultimately affect the long-term safety and wellness of occupants. By thoroughly examining ASHRAE 90.1, the need for building professionals to exceed the local code requirements will become apparent. Finally, the course will focus on utilizing software to specify pipe insulation, which will influence the project budget, energy-efficiency of a structure, and the long-term safety and wellness of occupants.

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Energy Options for Off Grid Homes - The Role of Propane in Off Grid Designs

Off Grid Homes, or homes that are completely independent of traditional utilities like the electric grid, are an increasingly popular design option. There are several motivations for an Off Grid Home design, such as a remote location or very expensive costs for a grid connection.

The energy systems for an Off Grid Home differ significantly from those used in most grid-connected homes, and typically incorporate renewables, battery storage, and a back-up power generator. The selection of appliances and other energy-consuming devices in an Off Grid Home is a detailed process that relies on energy efficiency, non-electric alternatives for thermal loads, and careful design of the home’s envelope. This course discusses all of these issues.

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Innovative Materials Help Energy Innovation Center Earn LEED Platinum Certification and Historic Tax Credits (Print Course)

The newly renovated, LEED Platinum Energy Innovation Center (EIC), is a collaborative hub that supports the Pittsburgh region’s emerging clean technologies. High-tech building materials can be found throughout the historic facility, showcasing chemistry as a sustainable solution and helping the Energy Innovation Center maintain its sustainable footprint.

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