Qualified Remodeler Magazine

AUG 2015

Qualified Remodeler helps independent remodeling firms to survive, become more professional and more profitable by providing must-have business information, namely best business practices, new product information and timely design ideas.

Issue link: https://qualifiedremodeler.epubxp.com/i/563357

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Page 23 of 79

15 kW of energy, and this one ofers nearly three times that amount," Landis asserts. "With the economies of scale both in labor and materials, the more panels you have, the shorter the payback period. Tis system makes their energy bills incredibly low." Two inverters in the garage convert the collect DC (direct current) to AC (alternating current), and the elec- tricity is sent into the utility company's grid, which ofsets the home's usage. Te array generates enough electricity to cover approximately 25 percent to 30 percent of the home's energy use. To provide additional passive energy savings, the team then looked in the opposite direction. DIGGING DEEP Beneath the front lawn a geothermal system works invis- ibly. Tree 6-in. diameter vertical wells descend 450 ft. deep, and the closed-loop remains 30-in. below grade, entering the house through an energy control room in the basement. "At a depth of 450 ft., the underground temperature remains a constant 56 F. Pipes circulate the liquid in the loop down through the system where a heat (or cooling) transfer takes place to bring the liquid to 56 F," Kerr explains. Each of the three wells is interconnect- ed but designated for diferent zones in the house, and the owners can control zones in- dependently to close them of when unoccu- pied. Te house employs a forced-air HVAC system. Te geothermal system's liquid passes through a compressor where a thin coil mesh heats or cools the air surrounding the pipes to the desired temperature before circulating it through the house. Because the liquid enters the compressor already at 56 F, heating or cooling it is extremely efcient. A propane tank on the property serves the kitchen range and a backup generator. Te geothermal system also preheats water for the water heater by pulling of the waste heat generated during the system's normal function. "Because a great deal of waste heat is produced during summer months, hot water for bathroom and kitchen facets during the summer is virtually free," Landis says. "A very small water pump is used to make the water as cold as they want, and the electricity for that pump is provided through the photo- voltaics," he notes. When completed, the $1.2 million remodel achieved the owners' varying goals, increased the house to 7,590 sq. ft., and provided renewable energy strategies that work together to conserve resources and ofer a solid return on investment. | KJ Fields writes from Portland, Ore., about remodeling and design. VIEW FROM THE TOP Despite an existing two-story entry atrium, the interior space of the house was dark. Te team changed the loca- tion of the front door and put full-sized skylights in the hallways to bring natural light into the home and reduce electrical consumption. To further minimize energy us- age, lighting fxtures are equipped with pre-set efciency dimmers that can be manually overrided as necessary. In all, six skylights and seven tubular skylights (also known as sun tunnels) were cut into the roof to direct natural light into the home. Te 3,727-sq.-ft. roof is also home to 80 photovoltaic panels installed on its south-facing 35- by 200-ft. sur- face. According to Landis, the average homeowner installs a much smaller solar panel array, but this homeowner pushed to get as many as would ft on the roof. "It's typical for the solar array on a house to provide about Above: In all, seven sun tunnels and 80 photovoltaic panels were installed on the roof. Right: Two inverters in the garage convert direct current to alternating current. PROJECTS: Design Solutions 22 August 2015 QR QualifiedRemodeler.com

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