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Advanced Energy Retrofit Guide: Practical Ways to Improve Energy Performance, K-12 Schools (Book)

Description: The U.S. Department of Energy developed the Advanced Energy Retrofit Guides (AERGs) to provide specific methodologies, information, and guidance to help energy managers and other stakeholders plan and execute energy efficiency improvements. Detailed technical discussion is fairly limited. Instead, we emphasize actionable information, practical methodologies, diverse case studies, and unbiased evaluations of the most promising retrofit energy efficiency measures for each building type. A series of AERGs is under development, addressing key segments of the commercial building stock. K-12 schools were selected as one of the highest priority building sectors, because schools affect the lives of most Americans. They also represent approximately 8% of the energy use and 10% of the floor area in commercial buildings nationwide. U.S. K-12 school districts spend more than $8 billion each year on energy - more than they spend on computers and textbooks combined. Most occupy older buildings that often have poor operational performance - more than 30% of schools were built before 1960. The average age of a school is about 42 years - which is nearly the expected serviceable lifespan of the building. K-12 schools offer unique opportunities for deep, cost-effective energy efficiency improvements, and this guide provides convenient and practical guidance for exploiting these opportunities in the context of public, private, and parochial schools.
Date: December 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Application of Spray Foam Insulation Under Plywood and OSB Roof Sheathing (Fact Sheet)

Description: Spray polyurethane foams (SPFs) have advantages over alternative insulation methods because they provide air sealing in complex assemblies, particularly roofs. Spray foam can provide the thermal, air, and vapor control layers in both new and retrofit construction. Unvented roof strategies with open cell and closed cell SPF insulation sprayed to the underside of roof sheathing have been used since the mid-1990s to provide durable and efficient building enclosures. However, there have been isolated incidents of failures (either sheathing rot or SPF delamination) that raise some general concerns about the hygrothermal performance and durability of these systems. The primary risks for roof systems are rainwater leaks, condensation from diffusion and air leakage, and built-in construction moisture. This project directly investigated rain and indirectly investigated built-in construction moisture and vapor drives. Research involved both hygrothermal modeling of a range of rain water leakage scenarios and field evaluations of in-service residential roofs. Other variables considered were climate zone, orientation, interior relative humidity, and the vapor permeance of the coating applied to the interior face of open cell SPF.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Buried and Encapsulated Ducts, Jacksonville, Florida (Fact Sheet)

Description: Ductwork installed in unconditioned attics can significantly increase the overall heating and cooling costs of residential buildings. In fact, estimated duct thermal losses for single-family residential buildings with ductwork installed in unconditioned attics range from 10% to 45%. In a study of three single-story houses in Florida, the Building America research team Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB) investigated the strategy of using buried and/or encapsulated ducts (BED) to reduce duct thermal losses in existing homes. The BED strategy consists of burying ducts in loose-fill insulation and/or encapsulating them in closed cell polyurethane spray foam (ccSPF) insulation. There are three possible combinations of BED strategies: (1) buried ducts; (2) encapsulated ducts (with ccSPF); and (3) buried and encapsulated ducts. The best solution for each situation depends on the climate, age of the house, and the configuration of the HVAC system and attic. For new construction projects, the team recommends that ducts be both encapsulated and buried as the minimal planning and costs required for this will yield optimal energy savings. The encapsulated/buried duct strategy, which utilizes ccSPF to address condensation concerns, is an approach that was developed specifically for humid climates.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cascade Apartments - Deep Energy Multifamily Retrofit , Kent, Washington (Fact Sheet)

Description: In December of 2009-10, King County Housing Authority (KCHA) implemented energy retrofit improvements in the Cascade multifamily community, located in Kent, Washington (marine climate.)This research effort involved significant coordination from stakeholders KCHA, WA State Department of Commerce, utility Puget Sound Energy, and Cascade tenants. This report focuses on the following three primary BA research questions : 1. What are the modeled energy savings using DOE low income weatherization approved TREAT software? 2. How did the modeled energy savings compare with measured energy savings from aggregate utility billing analysis? 3. What is the Savings to Investment Ratio (SIR) of the retrofit package after considering utility window incentives and KCHA capitol improvement funding.
Date: February 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cladding Attachment Over Thick Exterior Insulating Sheathing (Fact Sheet)

Description: The addition of insulation to the exterior of buildings is an effective means of increasing the thermal resistance of wood-framed walls and mass masonry wall assemblies. The location of the insulation on the exterior of the structure has many direct benefits, including better effective R-value from reduced thermal bridging, better condensation resistance, reduced thermal stress on the structure, as well as other commonly associated improvements such as increased airtightness and improved water management. For thick layers of exterior insulation (more than 1.5 in.), the use of wood furring strips attached through the insulation back to the structure has been used by many contractors and designers as a means to provide a convenient cladding attachment location. Although the approach has proven effective, there is significant resistance to its widespread implementation due to a lack of research and understanding of the mechanisms involved in the development of the vertical displacement resistance capacity. In addition, the long-term in-service performance of the system has been questioned due to potential creep effects of the assembly under the sustained dead load of the cladding and effects of varying environmental conditions. In addition, the current International Building Code (IBC) and International Residential Code (IRC) do not have a provision that specifically allows this assembly.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Evaluation of a Multifamily Retrofit in Climate Zone 5, Boulder, Colorado (Fact Sheet)

Description: In 2009, a 37-unit apartment complex located in Boulder, Colorado, underwent an energy retrofit to comply with Boulder SmartRegs Ordinance, a mandate that requires all rental properties to meet certain energy efficiency standards by 2018. The Consortium of Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), a U.S. Department of Energy Building America team, worked with city planners and building owners to evaluate this program and recently completed a case study evaluating the effectiveness of a collection of retrofit measures.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Field Performance of Heat Pump Water Heaters in the Northeast, Massachusetts and Rhode Island (Fact Sheet)

Description: Heat pump water heaters (HPWHs) are finally entering the mainstream residential water heater market. Potential catalysts are increased consumer demand for higher energy efficiency electric water heating and a new Federal water heating standard that effectively mandates use of HPWHs for electric storage water heaters with nominal capacities greater than 55 gallons. When compared to electric resistance water heating, the energy and cost savings potential of HPWHs is tremendous. Converting all electric resistance water heaters to HPWHs could save American consumers 7.8 billion dollars annually ($182 per household) in water heating operating costs and cut annual residential source energy consumption for water heating by 0.70 quads. Steven Winter Associates, Inc. embarked on one of the first in situ studies of these newly released HPWH products through a partnership with two sponsoring electric utility companies, National Grid and NSTAR, and one sponsoring energy efficiency service program administrator, Cape Light Compact. Recent laboratory studies have measured performance of HPWHs under various operating conditions, but publicly available field studies have not been as available. This evaluation attempts to provide publicly available field data on new HPWHs by monitoring the performance of three recently released products (General Electric GeoSpring, A.O. Smith Voltex, and Stiebel Eltron Accelera 300). Fourteen HPWHs were installed in Massachusetts and Rhode Island and monitored for over a year. Of the 14 units, ten were General Electric models (50 gallon units), two were Stiebel Eltron models (80 gallon units), and two were A.O. Smith models (one 60-gallon and one 80-gallon unit).
Date: December 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fort Devens: Cold Climate Market-Rate Townhomes Targeting HERS Index of 40, Harvard, Massachusetts (Fact Sheet)

Description: Achieving aggressive energy efficiency targets requires tight coordination and clear communication among owners, designers, builders, and subcontractors. For this townhome project, MassDevelopment, the quasi-governmental agency owner, selected Metric Development of Boston, teaming with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB) and Cambridge Seven Architects, to build very high performing market-rate homes. Fort Devens is part of a decommissioned army base in working-class Harvard, Massachusetts, approximately one hour northwest of Boston. The team proposed 12 net zero energy-ready townhomes, meaning that the application of renewable energy systems would result in annual net zero energy use in the homes. The homes were also designed to achieve a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) Index Score of 41 before adding renewables. For this project, CARB drew on its experience working with Rural Development Inc. on a series of affordable townhomes in northern Massachusetts. The team carefully planned the site to maximize solar access, daylighting, and efficient building forms. The basic strategy was to design a very efficient thermal enclosure while minimizing incremental cost increases compared with standard construction. Using BEopt modeling software, the team established the requirements of the enclosure and investigated multiple assembly options. They settled on double-wall construction with dense-pack cellulose fill. High performance vinyl windows (U-0.24, solar heat gain coefficient [SHGC]-0.22), a vented R-59 attic, and exceptional air sealing completed the package.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hood River Passive House, Hood River, Oregon (Fact Sheet)

Description: The Hood River Passive Project was developed by Root Design Build of Hood River Oregon using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) to meet all of the requirements for certification under the European Passive House standards. The Passive House design approach has been gaining momentum among residential designers for custom homes and BEopt modeling indicates that these designs may actually exceed the goal of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Building America program to "reduce home energy use by 30%-50%" (compared to 2009 energy codes for new homes). This report documents the short term test results of the Shift House and compares the results of PHPP and BEopt modeling of the project. The design includes high R-Value assemblies, extremely tight construction, high performance doors and windows, solar thermal DHW, heat recovery ventilation, moveable external shutters and a high performance ductless mini-split heat pump. Cost analysis indicates that many of the measures implemented in this project did not meet the BA standard for cost neutrality. The ductless mini-split heat pump, lighting and advanced air leakage control were the most cost effective measures. The future challenge will be to value engineer the performance levels indicated here in modeling using production based practices at a significantly lower cost.
Date: February 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hydronic Heating Coil Versus Propane Furnace, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware (Fact Sheet)

Description: Insight Homes constructed two houses in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, with identical floor plans and thermal envelopes but different heating and domestic hot water (DHW) systems. Each house is 1,715-ft<sup>2</sup> with a single story, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and ductwork located in conditioned crawlspaces. The standard house, which the builder offers as its standard production house, uses an air source heat pump (ASHP) with supplemental propane furnace heating. The Building America test house uses the same ASHP unit with supplemental heat provided by the DHW heater (a combined DHW and hydronic heating system, where the hydronic heating element is in the air handler). Both houses were occupied during the test period. Results indicate that efficiency of the two heating systems was not significantly different. Three issues dominate these results; lower system design performance resulting from the indoor refrigerant coil selected for the standard house, an incorrectly functioning defrost cycle in the standard house, and the low resolution of the natural gas monitoring equipment. The thermal comfort of both houses fell outside the ASHRAE Standard 55 heating range but was within the ACCA room-to-room temperature range when compared to the thermostat temperature. The monitored DHW draw schedules were input into EnergyPlus to evaluate the efficiency of the tankless hot water heater model using the two monitored profiles and the Building America House Simulation Protocols. The results indicate that the simulation is not significantly impacted by the draw profiles.
Date: January 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Improving Comfort in Hot-Humid Climates with a Whole-House Dehumidifier, Windermere, Florida (Fact Sheet)

Description: Maintaining comfort in a home can be challenging in hot-humid climates. At the common summer temperature set point of 75 degrees F, the perceived air temperature can vary by 11 degrees F because higher indoor humidity reduces comfort. Often the air conditioner (AC) thermostat set point is lower than the desirable cooling level to try to increase moisture removal so that the interior air is not humid or "muggy." However, this method is not always effective in maintaining indoor relative humidity (RH) or comfort. In order to quantify the performance of a combined whole-house dehumidifier (WHD) AC system, researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy's Building America team Consortium of Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB) monitored the operation of two Lennox AC systems coupled with a Honeywell DH150 TrueDRY whole-house dehumidifier for a six-month period. By using a WHD to control moisture levels (latent cooling) and optimizing a central AC to control temperature (sensible cooling), improvements in comfort can be achieved while reducing utility costs. Indoor comfort for this study was defined as maintaining indoor conditions at below 60% RH and a humidity ratio of 0.012 lbm/lbm while at common dry bulb set point temperatures of 74 degrees -80 degrees F. In addition to enhanced comfort, controlling moisture to these levels can reduce the risk of other potential issues such as mold growth, pests, and building component degradation. Because a standard AC must also reduce dry bulb air temperature in order to remove moisture, a WHD is typically needed to support these latent loads when sensible heat removal is not desired.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Kohl's Aims for Energy Savings in Warm-Humid Climates (Fact Sheet)

Description: Kohl's Department Stores partnered with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop and implement solutions to build new stores that consume at least 50% less than the requirements set by ASHRAE/ANSI/IESNA Standard 90.1-20041 as part of DOE's Commercial Building Partnership (CBP) program. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) provided technical expertise on the project.
Date: December 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Moisture Management of High-R Walls (Fact Sheet)

Description: The following report explains the moisture-related concerns for High R-value wall assemblies and discusses past Building America research work that informs this study. Hygrothermal simulations were prepared for several common approaches to High R-value wall construction in six cities (Houston, Atlanta, Seattle, St. Louis, Chicago, and International Falls) representing a range of climate zones (2, 3, 4C, 4, 5A, and 7, respectively). The simulations are informed by experience gained from past research in this area and validated by field measurement and forensic experience. The modeling program was developed to assess the moisture durability of the wall assemblies based on three primary sources of moisture: construction moisture, air leakage condensation, and bulk water leakage. The peak annual moisture content of the wood based exterior sheathing was used to comparatively analyze the response to the moisture loads for each of the walls in each given city. Walls which experienced sheathing moisture contents between 20% and 28% were identified as risky, whereas those exceeding 28% were identified as very high risk. All of the wall assemblies perform well under idealized conditions. However, only the walls with exterior insulation, or cavity insulation which provides a hygrothermal function similar to exterior insulation, perform adequately when exposed to moisture loads. Walls with only cavity insulation are particularly susceptible to air leakage condensation. None of the walls performed well when a precipitation based bulk water leak was introduced to the backside of the sheathing, emphasizing the importance of proper flashing details.
Date: December 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multifamily Individual Heating and Ventilation Systems, Lawrence, Massachusetts (Fact Sheet)

Description: The conversion of an older Massachusetts building into condominiums illustrates a safe, durable, and cost-effective solution for heating and ventilation systems that can potentially benefit millions of multifamily buildings. Merrimack Valley Habitat for Humanity (MVHfH) partnered with U.S. Department of Energy Building America team Building Science Corporation (BSC) to provide high performance affordable housing for 10 families in the retrofit of an existing mass masonry building (a former convent). The original ventilation design for the project was provided by a local engineer and consisted of a single large heat recovery ventilator (HRV) located in a mechanical room in the basement with a centralized duct system providing supply air to the main living space and exhausting stale air from the single bathroom in each apartment. This design was deemed to be far too costly to install and operate for several reasons: the large central HRV was oversized and the specified flows to each apartment were much higher than the ASHRAE 62.2 rate; an extensive system of ductwork, smoke and fire dampers, and duct chases were specified; ductwork required a significant area of dropped ceilings; and the system lacked individual ventilation control in the apartments
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

New Insights for Improving the Designs of Flexible Duct Junction Boxes (Fact Sheet)

Description: IBACOS explored the relationships between pressure and physical configurations of flexible duct junction boxes by using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations to predict individual box parameters and total system pressure, thereby ensuring improved HVAC performance. Current Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) guidance (Group 11, Appendix 3, ACCA Manual D, Rutkowski 2009) allows for unconstrained variation in the number of takeoffs, box sizes, and takeoff locations. The only variables currently used in selecting an equivalent length (EL) are velocity of air in the duct and friction rate, given the first takeoff is located at least twice its diameter away from the inlet. This condition does not account for other factors impacting pressure loss across these types of fittings. For each simulation, the IBACOS team converted pressure loss within a box to an EL to compare variation in ACCA Manual D guidance to the simulated variation. IBACOS chose cases to represent flows reasonably correlating to flows typically encountered in the field and analyzed differences in total pressure due to increases in number and location of takeoffs, box dimensions, and velocity of air, and whether an entrance fitting is included. The team also calculated additional balancing losses for all cases due to discrepancies between intended outlet flows and natural flow splits created by the fitting. In certain asymmetrical cases, the balancing losses were significantly higher than symmetrical cases where the natural splits were close to the targets. Thus, IBACOS has shown additional design constraints that can ensure better system performance.
Date: January 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Optimizing Hydronic System Performance in Residential Applications, Ithaca, New York (Fact Sheet)

Description: Condensing boiler technology has been around for many years and has proven to be a durable, reliable method of heating. Based on previous research efforts, however, it is apparent that these types of systems are not designed and installed to achieve maximum efficiency. For example, in order to protect their equipment in the field, manufacturers of low-mass condensing boilers typically recommend design strategies and components that ensure steady, high flow rates through the heat exchangers, such as primary-secondary piping, which ultimately result in decreased efficiency.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Passive Room-to-Room Air Transfer, Fresno, California (Fact Sheet)

Description: Field testing was performed in a retrofit unoccupied test house in Fresno, California. Three air-based heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) distribution systems - a typical airflow ducted system to the bedrooms, a low airflow ducted system to the bedrooms, and a system with no ductwork to the bedrooms - were evaluated during heating, cooling, and midseason conditions. The relative ability of each of the three systems was assessed with respect to relevant Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) and ASHRAE standards for house temperature uniformity and stability, respectively. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling also was performed and refined based on comparison to field test results to determine the air flow rate into the bedrooms of over-door and bottom-of-door air transfer grilles.
Date: February 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Performance House: A Cold Climate Challenge Home, Old Greenwich, Connecticut (Fact Sheet)

Description: By working with builder partners on test homes, researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy's Building America program can vet whole-house building strategies and avoid potential unintended consequences of implementing untested solution packages on a production scale. To support this research, Building America team Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB) partnered with Preferred Builders Inc. on a high-performance test home in Old Greenwich, Connecticut. The philosophy and science behind the 2,700 ft2 "Performance House" was based on the premise that homes should be safe, healthy, comfortable, durable, efficient, and adaptable to the needs of homeowners. The technologies and strategies used in the "Performance House" were best practices rather than cutting edge, with a focus on simplicity in construction, maintenance, and operation. Achieving 30% source energy savings compared with a home built to the 2009 International Energy Conservation Code in the cold climate zone requires that nearly all components and systems be optimized. Careful planning and design are critical. The end result was a DOE Challenge Home that achieved a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) Index Score of 20 (43 without photovoltaics [PV]).
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Predicting Envelope Leakage in Attached Dwellings (Fact Sheet)

Description: The most common method of measuring air leakage is to perform single (or solo) blower door pressurization and/or depressurization test. In detached housing, the single blower door test measures leakage to the outside. In attached housing, however, this "solo" test method measures both air leakage to the outside and air leakage between adjacent units through common surfaces. Although minimizing leakage to neighboring units is highly recommended to avoid indoor air quality issues between units, reduce pressure differentials between units, and control stack effect, the energy benefits of air sealing can be significantly overpredicted if the solo air leakage number is used in the energy analysis. Guarded blower door testing is more appropriate for isolating and measuring leakage to the outside in attached housing. This method uses multiple blower doors to depressurize adjacent spaces to the same level as the unit being tested. Maintaining a neutral pressure across common walls, ceilings, and floors acts as a "guard" against air leakage between units. The resulting measured air leakage in the test unit is only air leakage to the outside. Although preferred for assessing energy impacts, the challenges of performing guarded testing can be daunting.
Date: November 1, 2013
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Stud Walls With Continuous Exterior Insulation for Factory Built Housing: New York, New York (Fact Sheet), NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory)

Description: The Advanced Envelope Research effort will provide factory homebuilders with high performance, cost-effective alternative envelope designs. In the near term, these technologies will play a central role in meeting stringent energy code requirements. For manufactured homes, the thermal requirements, last updated by statute in 1994, will move up to the more rigorous IECC 2012 levels in 2013, the requirements of which are consistent with site built and modular housing. This places added urgency on identifying envelope technologies that the industry can implement in the short timeframe. The primary goal of this research is to develop wall designs that meet the thermal requirements based on 2012 IECC standards. Given the affordable nature of manufactured homes, impact on first cost is a major consideration in developing the new envelope technologies. This work is part of a four-phase, multi-year effort. Phase 1 identified seven envelope technologies and provided a preliminary assessment of three selected methods for building high performance wall systems. Phase 2 focused on the development of viable product designs, manufacturing strategies, addressing code and structural issues, and cost analysis of the three selected options. An industry advisory committee helped critique and select the most viable solution to move further in the research - stud walls with continuous exterior insulation. Phase 3, the subject of the current report, focused on the design development of the selected wall concept and explored variations on the use of exterior foam insulation. The scope also included material selection, manufacturing and cost analysis, and prototyping and testing.
Date: January 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Comfort and HVAC Performance for a New Construction Occupied Test House in Roseville, California

Description: K. Hovnanian(R) Homes(R) constructed a 2,253-ft2 single-story slab-on-grade ranch house for an occupied test house (new construction) in Roseville, California. One year of monitoring and analysis focused on the effectiveness of the space conditioning system at maintaining acceptable temperature and relative humidity levels in several rooms of the home, as well as room-to-room differences and the actual measured energy consumption by the space conditioning system. In this home, the air handler unit (AHU) and ducts were relocated to inside the thermal boundary. The AHU was relocated from the attic to a mechanical closet, and the ductwork was located inside an insulated and air-sealed bulkhead in the attic. To describe the performance and comfort in the home, the research team selected representative design days and extreme days from the annual data for analysis. To ensure that temperature differences were within reasonable occupant expectations, the team followed Air Conditioning Contractors of America guidance. At the end of the monitoring period, the occupant of the home had no comfort complaints in the home. Any variance between the modeled heating and cooling energy and the actual amounts used can be attributed to the variance in temperatures at the thermostat versus the modeled inputs.
Date: October 1, 2013
Creator: Burdick, A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hood River Passive House

Description: The Hood River Passive Project was developed by Root Design Build of Hood River Oregon using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) to meet all of the requirements for certification under the European Passive House standards. The Passive House design approach has been gaining momentum among residential designers for custom homes and BEopt modeling indicates that these designs may actually exceed the goal of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Building America program to reduce home energy use by 30%-50% (compared to 2009 energy codes for new homes). This report documents the short term test results of the Shift House and compares the results of PHPP and BEopt modeling of the project. The design includes high R-Value assemblies, extremely tight construction, high performance doors and windows, solar thermal DHW, heat recovery ventilation, moveable external shutters and a high performance ductless mini-split heat pump. Cost analysis indicates that many of the measures implemented in this project did not meet the BA standard for cost neutrality. The ductless mini-split heat pump, lighting and advanced air leakage control were the most cost effective measures. The future challenge will be to value engineer the performance levels indicated here in modeling using production based practices at a significantly lower cost.
Date: January 1, 2014
Creator: Hales, D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Measure Guideline: Implementing a Plenum Truss for a Compact Air Distribution System

Description: This Measure Guideline presents the steps to implement a compact duct system inside an attic bulkhead (plenum truss) of a one-story, slab-on-grade (SOG) home. In a compact duct design, ductwork runs are reduced in length to yield a smaller and more compact duct system. Less energy will be lost through ductwork if the ducts are contained within the thermal enclosure of the house. These measures are intended for the production builder working to meet the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) requirements and keep the ductwork within the thermal enclosure of the house. This measure of bringing the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment and ductwork within the thermal enclosure of the house is appropriate for the builder wishing to avoid cathedralizing the insulation in the attic space (i.e., locating it at the underside of the roof deck rather than along the attic floor) or adding dropped soffits.
Date: October 1, 2013
Creator: Burdick, A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department