rdfurcht


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Let’s Clear Up Some Confusion About Solar Panels

Different panel types do different things. If you want solar energy for your home, get the basics here first Full Story
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floridaseahawk
Josh, Can you recommend any Solar contractors up in the panhandle???
June 20, 2014 at 11:31am   
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josh wynne construction
If you are interested in a lease program, consider Solar City (owned by Elon Musk of Tesla Motorworks). They did the install in the photo of me standing behind the panels. They were great value. If you want to own, I don't know any local guys but I have a guy in this area who is doing a few Mega Watts in that area and may be interested. His company is Region Solar http://www.regionsolar.co The owner, Andrew, is a good friend. Tell him I sent you.
June 20, 2014 at 11:49am   
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rdfurcht bookmarked an ideabook

Going Solar at Home: Solar Panel Basics

Save money on electricity and reduce your carbon footprint by installing photovoltaic panels. This guide will help you get started Full Story
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josh wynne construction
I am not interested in a polo-science debate related to climate change. I do appreciate your article and I often build zero energy homes. My only option for power generation on the west coast of Florida is solar so I am very accustomed to dealing with a variety of options. I will re-iterate your point about working with a reputable solar company. There is MUCH to know and many variables. Saving a few cents/watt up front can cost you for the next 25 years. Here are a few of my recent installs including the first Solar City lease in FL. These are all LEED Platinum homes
June 19, 2014 at 5:38pm     
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Futuro Futuro Kitchen Range Hoods
Regarding the cost of solar systems - federal, state, and many local governments offer rebates, tax credits, and/or discounts on energy use. In some places, power companies may even "buy back" your excess energy (if your system generates more power than you're using, i.e. a 2nd home / vacation home).

Taking our location as an example:

The State of New York offers a tax credit equal to 25% of the equipment cost, up to $ 5,000, which can be carried over up to 5 years. Source: http://www.tax.ny.gov/pit/credits/solar_energy_system_equipment_credit.htm.

In addition to that, the City of New York offers a tax abatement of 5.0 - 8.75% of "solar-panel-related expenditures" (we assume this means both the cost of equipment and the cost of installation, unlike the NY State tax rebate which is worded to apply specifically to the equipment alone), up to $ 62,500 or the building's tax liability, whichever is less. Source: http://www.nyc.gov/html/gbee/html/incentives/solar.shtml

Federal tax incentives and credits apply to PV, solar-heat, geothermal, and other types of renewable energy, and vary quite a lot. Check http://www.dsireusa.org/incentives/incentive.cfm?Incentive_Code=US37F (DSIRE = Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency).

With the right research, taking advantage of all the tax credits & rebates, it's possible to bring down the cost of solar systems to much less than the "sticker price".

...and in a few more years, Toshiba and other companies are going to have personal nuclear reactors available, and we can look forward to a whole new debate! :)

( http://www.tigerdirect.com/sectors/campaigns/kube/kubex15.asp )
June 27, 2014 at 12:55pm   
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rdfurcht bookmarked an ideabook

Houzz Tour: See a Concrete House With a $0 Energy Bill

Passive House principles and universal design elements result in a home that’ll work efficiently for the long haul Full Story
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NZ Builders ltd
We used Eurline windows as they are passive house certified have a fibreglass hybrid extrusion with welded joints. All south glazing is HSGC. East west are LowE. The other companies that Maltby mentions above are good companies as well.
on Sunday at 8:07pm   
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NZ Builders ltd
12” walls. Maybe the14” in the article came from me saying that if I were to do this again I would bump it to 14” walls as it would have reduced the Solar P.V by 25%
All homes in the future are being built with 14 to 15” walls. or R28-R32 depending on Solar Gains.
on Sunday at 8:11pm   
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rdfurcht bookmarked an ideabook

Off the Grid: Siting and Building to Conserve Energy

Look to low-tech solutions for big energy savings when you’re constructing a home Full Story
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Robin
So I had a really hard time finding info on the web for my rural area, but just found some iPhone apps on solar calculations! (I haven't researched apps for wind info yet.) One thing I just read on installing solar panels: there is a common installation error made where panels are misaligned off magnetic south to true south by rotating them east rather than to the west reducing performance substantially. SEE APPENDIX B ON NOT REPEATING THE TRUE SOUTH MISTAKE...http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/ECMD/Multimedia/documents/AxClimateManual_000.pdf
May 28, 2014 at 7:37am     
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Ken Kirkham
Why do people use the term off-grid for homes attached to the grid? You may be energy efficient but you are still on-grid. Off-grid can be achieved but you likely get no refund checks and no tax incentives.

As for aligning PV panels to true south there is more than due south to calculate. Unless you live in flat country you may have the sun rise later or set earlier than the charts. In my area I gain nearly 1.5 hours in the summer and 1/2 hour in the winter by aligning the panels 30 degrees to southwest. We have a hill on the east that blocks the early morning sun and nothing on the west.
May 29, 2014 at 12:49pm   
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rdfurcht bookmarked an ideabook

20 Outdoor Rooms With Entertaining Flair

Some have fire features and grills; others, just a table and chairs. But all of these open-air rooms show guests a good time Full Story
     Comment   last Friday
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redpoint
Thank you Houzz for showing some ideas that do not have to cost a fortune! My favorite photos are always the ones that are the least upscale. (That being said--I did save the stone-and-fire pic to my dream folder.)
last Saturday at 7:26am   
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California Fence Company
Great ideas, I loved it very much. Those who would get the opportunity to live in such picturesque settings would be very lucky. The outdoor space with the wood fences is a place where you can spend your day and forget all your worries- a peaceful retreat away from all the stress.
last Saturday at 9:19am   
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rdfurcht bookmarked an ideabook

10 Ways to Hide That Air Conditioner

Feeling boxed in designing around your mini-split air conditioner? Try one of these clever disguises and distractions Full Story
     Comment   last Friday
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Smith & Associates Design
This means of cooling a home or the individual rooms is a step backward.

While the installations in 9. & 10. were very nicely accomplished I think controlled ducting and other adjustments make more sense practically and most definitely - aesthetically.

In addition to those points the central unit can be the most quiet of all solutions. Any system built into a house correctly should be silent to the inhabitants. That cannot be said of the wall hung units.

The individual units will always be the elephant in the room.
last Friday at 7:45pm   
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Evan Hammersmith
jeannerw you asked: Is a condensate pump still necessary to prevent condensation?

I'm an HVAC engineer, and here's my prof. advice to all regarding the condensate drain lines. Anytime you can direct the drain line to a basement floor drain, or laundry tub, do it! Draining by gravity is always best. Condensate pumps are effective as long as the pump doesn't fail without your knowing. once the condensate backs up in the pump, it'll leak from your AC unit. If your unit is located on an outside wall, you can also drain to the exterior and dump the condensate on grade. The main risk to this is insects taking residents in your drain line and plugging it up. It may not be an issue, but it introduces a potential point of maintenance.
on Monday at 6:04am   
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rdfurcht bookmarked an ideabook

20 Outstanding Outdoor Living Rooms

Why give up style and comfort just because you add fresh air? Turn any porch or patio into a sumptuous room by following these leads Full Story
     Comment   July 19, 2014
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pursekeys
Fred, thank you for showing such a wide variety of styles and ideas; each one was beautiful yet different. A GREAT idea book!
July 16, 2014 at 5:57am     
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Turkish-T
We love your aesthetic!
July 22, 2014 at 2:09pm   
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