Innovative solutions for creating healthy, efficient, eco-friendly homes

Archive of: Energy Efficiency

Title Issue

Designing a passive solar home

My passive solar home, located in the community of Fly Creek in upstate New York, looks just like a traditional-style 4,000-square-foot house and cost about the same to build, but it uses 70 percent less energy to heat than a home of a comparable size. I spend about $900 (or about $2.50 a day) on propane for combined heat and hot water, and only $100 a month, on average, for electricity.

November 2008

Arizona's green adobe home

Desert colors are still popular in the Southwest and other areas of the country, but so is green — the shade of green that equates with eco-friendly products, such as the adobe bricks used in the construction of a home in North Scottsdale, Ariz.

November 2008

Home energy resource guide

Homeowners who want to cut their energy bills have a lot of options — and a lot of important decisions to make. Fortunately, you can turn to a wide range of energy-related resources for assistance. The following organizations, companies and institutions can provide the information you need to make the right choices.

August 2008

SH Bookshelf: Setting goals to save energy

Homeowners who are serious about reducing energy costs can turn to two books that provide real-world, hands-on advice and practical solutions. "The Homeowner’s Handbook to Energy Efficiency," by John Krigger and Chris Dorsi, starts by advocating the development of a plan for your home and explains how to analyze your energy consumption, calculate your energy costs, schedule a home energy audit and set goals.

August 2008

Remodeling for peak efficiency

Many homeowners embark on green renovations without giving energy efficiency the priority it deserves. The energy a home consumes over its life span has a far greater environmental impact than just about any product a homeowner can select. Recycled glass tile and bamboo flooring, for instance, are certainly attractive and can play a role in an overall green strategy.

August 2008

22 ways to cut energy costs now

At this point in time it’s evident that energy costs are not going down anytime soon. In fact, as gasoline prices continue to remain high, it’s obvious that any energy-related lifestyle improvements we make today will produce big dividends in the months and years ahead. It seems as though every facet of our lives relates to energy use of some type, including the vehicles we drive, the mass transportation we take and, of course, the homes we build and live in.

August 2008

Fireplaces that warm your home and wallet

Fireplaces rank among the top three features desired by new homeowners, according to the National Association of Home Builders, and it's easy to understand why — there's nothing quite like a fireplace to create the perfect ambience in a home. But your love affair with the fireplace would definitely cool if you knew how much of your energy dollars were going up in smoke.

September 2007
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