The single biggest challenge to residential energy efficiency and clean energy improvements is Awareness and Education.
Contractors find the availability of low-cost financing, support in recruiting employees, and sales/lead generation support among the most helpful resources the building performance industry could provide.
Weatherization Agencies find the availability of recruiting support and more learning/educational opportunities among the most helpful resources.
The highest rated potential policy initiatives focus on rebates and tax credits, weatherization for low-income families, financing, and contractor training.
National and local policy advocacy, consumer awareness, and training and workforce development were rated as the most important needs for the five collaborating partners to focus on.
This collaborative effort between the Building Performance Institute (BPI), Efficiency First (EF), Energy and Environmental Buildings Alliance (EEBA), Home Energy Magazine, and Home Performance Coalition (HPC) is just the start. We will be working together on more opportunities to support you and build the home performance industry.
Building Performance News and Discussion
By Quinn Korzeniecki
We need your input! Do you want to be among the first to see the future new BPI website? Email email@example.com to join the focus group. The time you put in to the group depends on how much of an influence you'd like to have on the website. Conversation will open up in early May.
Check out our free webinar on Wednesday, April 5th from 2-2:30pm EST for BPI stakeholders who participate with Home Performance with ENERGY STAR (HPwES) programs, consisting of a private tour of the new HPwES website and its online tools and resources that can be used to better guide homeowners through the home improvement process. Click here to register.
BPI supports strong consumer protections in residential PACE financing programs. Check out how BPI helps state and local programs meet the U.S. DOE's new "Best Practices Guidelines for R-PACE Programs."
According to the second annual U.S. DOE's 2017 U.S. Energy and Employment Report, the energy market grew 7% in 2016, more than twice the rate of the global economy, and over 3 million now work in clean energy. Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) also points out that globally, advanced energy brought in $1.4 trillion in revenue last year, which is, the report says, "nearly twice the size of the airline industry."
Learn how air barriers in dropped soffits increase quality and improve performance in this how-to article.
As houses are built tighter, they exchange less air between inside and outside, which could lead to stale air inside. Learn the importance of mechanical ventilation and how to ventilate correctly in this video.
Opportunity to Help Preserve Energy Efficiency Funding
We want to inform you of an opportunity to sign on to a letter urging Congress to continue funding residential efficiency initiatives and funding including the Weatherization Assistance Program, ENERGY STAR Homes, and Home Performance with ENERGY STAR. You can read the letter by clicking here.
If this issue concerns your work or your business, this is a way to let elected officials know that these DOE and EPA initiatives help our industry serve our customers.
Reauthorization of these programs ensures residential energy efficiency continues to remain strong. If you want to participate, you can sign the letter here.
For more information on this topic, please see the following articles:
We had a wide variety of answers flow in from many different people for the last stumper!
As a reminder, our last stumper came from a contractor located in northwest Ohio who did a small addition on a two-story home, during which he discovered that a second floor dryer vent had come apart. They fixed the vent (with a 15-20ft run), but after two months, the customer said the dryer was taking 3 hours to dry a load!
What could be going on?
January's quickest, most accurate response came from Terry R. Pease, BPI Quality Control Inspector and Weatherization Quality Assurance Coordinator at Wisconsin Department of Administration. Terry states, "Given that the dryer runs 15 to 20 feet through an unheated space, and is vented through the roof, suggests that the pipe runs somewhat vertical but also horizontal. If the pipe is not insulated to a minimum of R8, as the moist air runs through the attic space, condensation is occurring until the pipe is blocked since the warm moist air is cooling to the freezing point and building up until blockage occurs. The number of corners/elbows can also be a factor as is the circumference or size of the dryer pipe in relation to the amount of flow restriction. Between loads on a sub-zero day, ice would begin to form immediately on elbows that may be trapping condensation and building upon itself between loads."
In addition to Terry's great response, Jason Scheurer, BPI Super Proctor and Forensic Building Investigator at BEST-Techs also provided a potential solution to the issue: to install a booster fan and lint trap to help get the hot exhaust air out. "The clothes aren't getting dry due to back pressure and the weight of the hot air falling back down on itself, causing moisture issues [in the ductwork and] in the dryer itself."
Thank you to all who sent in responses!
Let's Play March's Stump the Chump!
This month's stumper came from Marcus and Lisa Miller, real estate brokers in San Francisco, California. When selling a home, the couple stumbled upon the following furnace pipe insulation in a garage.
What is all over the insulation?
Send us your answer to this month's stumper! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to enter to win the contest, and be featured in the next issue of BPI's Performance Matters.
JOIN THE DISCUSSION! Each month's Stump the Chump challenge will be featured as a topic on BPI's discussion page on Home Energy Pros, the home performance industry's very own social networking site. To send your answer there, and discuss with other Stump the Chump fans, simply visit BPI's discussion page and click on the right-hand 'Sign Up' box to create a profile, then add your comment.