The Twelve Essential Steps to Net Zero Energy with Ted Clifton (Clifton View Homes)

hi I'm Ted Clifton of Clifton view homes and zero-energy clowns we've been operating on Whidbey Island building fine custom and luxury homes for about 24 years we started zero energy plans as a design company about 2008 we've been designing and building the most energy-efficient homes in the world right here on Whidbey Island this video is going to show you how we do it with the twelve essential steps to not 0 step number one is building orientation the ridge line needs to run east-west so that you have a south-facing roof slope roof slope is important to give you enough room for solar panels to power the house when you're done with all the other steps the south facing wall is the best place for windows that can gather the Sun in the winter time and yet the overhangs and covered porches in this house will stop excesses Sun from coming in and overheating the house in the summer time the second step to a successful Net Zero home is a simple design this house is nearly square between its four corners and almost a cube because of its height that limits the exterior surface area surface area being your enemy both for energy boss as well as for cost so if we can keep the cost down we can put additional features providing the energy that you need or limiting energy use in your heating system so in this house we've kept a very simple design lots of open space and the closet walls for example behind me over here are only five feet tall at the back of the closet that's the north wall of the house the wall that's going to lose the most energy in the winter nighttime so keep that wall small we limited the heat loss and we limit the cost so the third step to Net Zero is correct window orientation in this house most of our windows are facing south we have limited the number of windows facing east or west and almost no windows facing north we're still getting direct sunlight into every room in the house but most of that light is coming from the south side of the house where we have the tunity to use it to warm the house in the wintertime and our overhangs are properly sized to limit what comes in in the summertime the fourth step to Net Zero and one of the most important is having the correct thermal mass in a house in this case we've used thermal mass floor on our main level we've used thermal mass concrete countertops in our kitchen the combination of these gives us enough heat storage that we can warm with the Sun during the day and the house will still be warm all night long and instead of the Sun overheating the house in the summertime it simply stores that excess heat in the floor to be radiated back into the room overnight on the coldest day of the year we might only experience a degree or two of temperature loss from day to night we could shut the heating system off have a power outage some other thing that causes the heat system not to run and you only lose a degree or two a day some of our homes we even put a thermal mass slab on the second floor to get the best of performance out of the house the fifth step to building a successful net zero energy home is to limit air leakage build a tight envelope we use sips panel construction which is a foam core with OSB on both sides these panels are made up to eight feet by 24 feet in a single panel so we can have an entire wall with the windows pre-cut out it assembles really quickly but there's very few joints that need to be sealed we seal those joints very carefully and instead of losing up to 30% of our energy due to air leakage we might lose one or two percent a tight house is an efficient house so the sixth step to Net Zero is to balance your insulation levels throughout the home having great insulation the roof but not so much in the walls is not cost-effective having great insulation the roof and walls and having code minimum window doesn't make any sense we use an r5 window which is a u value of 0.2 by bringing the window up as close as we possibly can with modern technology to what our walls and our ceilings would be we save more energy than if we just added more insulation to the lid we've done energy modeling that shows the closer you can get the walls in the lid to each other instead of having say our 49 in the lid and our 21 and the walls go to our 32 and our 38 you'll say 14% on your energy balance your insulation levels as much as the accountant in a tight home ventilation is really important and even more important is to balance your ventilation so instead of trying to suck air out of the house with bath bands or kitchen fans and have no place for air to come back in we actually provide a powered HEPA filter which filters the incoming air as well as providing the power to balance against your range hood found so the key to balancing these two fans is we don't use the fan that came with the hood we put our own kitchen fan in place that matches the CFM s provided by the HEPA filter family so now we're matching the input and the output and in this case the fan is actually mounted outside so when we turn on the kitchen exhaust we don't actually hear the fan run we only hear the air move much more pleasant the key to heating and cooling efficiency once you have the envelope right is what kind of equipment you're using for heating and cooling in this case it's a ground source heat pump this piece of equipment is about four hundred and fifty percent efficient on a year-round average in this location it takes water circulates it through the ground drawing heat out of that roughly 50 degree ground and then extracts the heat from that bumps it up to about a hundred and twenty-five degrees with a compressor it is much less costly to move heat from one thing to another than it is to create heat as in burning a fossil fuel so we take that 125 degree water we use that to heat our domestic hot water as well as to heat the in-floor radiant heat and the rest of the house the ninth step to energy-efficient construction is your domestic hot water this tank here actually draws hot water from the ground source heat pump runs it through the coils in the bottom to heat the water that's in the tank which is the water that you use to shower if we didn't have a ground source heat pump we could use this same tank with a solar collector on the roof and use solar energy to heat our domestic hot water on the other side of the wall behind me there's a second tank that's just a regular electric tank type water heater that heater is used just to store the hot water once it has been heated up it uses very little energy to keep that water at that temperature this is the one that does all the work step number 10 in the pursuit of a NetZero energy home is efficient appliances Energy Star is a good place to start but Energy Star only requires that their appliance be 15% more efficient than the standard in this case we found a refrigerator that's right at the bottom of the scale for its size and class of appliance in this size of refrigerator we could actually be Energy Star and use seventy seven dollars a year in energy that's good not good enough we've got to go beyond that and find the most efficient appliance in its category this refrigerator costs no more than the other it has all the bells and whistles all the features it's a beautiful refrigerator but it uses less energy shop for your appliances carefully efficient lighting is step number 11 towards NASA or Energy remember that you're trying to light surfaces not spaces so here we're lighting the surface that you're working on the kitchen sink in this case so have at least fluorescent or compact fluorescent bulbs and all of your lighting but the lights that are on the most during the day in this case the kitchen lights are LED lights they use even less energy than the compact fluorescents and have really a nice tone to they're worth spending that little bit of extra money up front in the last 20 years or more so you never be replacing bulbs and they're the most efficient light you can buy today when most people think of a zero energy home they think of solar panels on the roof that's actually the last thing you do if you haven't done the first 11 steps correctly you'll never get to Net Zero there isn't enough roof on most houses to put enough solar panels to get to Net Zero but by doing the first 11 steps correctly than the 12th step adding solar panels the production meter putting energy back into the grid when you produce excess energy then you draw from the grid at night or in the winter time when you're not producing enough by using the right amount of solar panels over the course of the year you'll be not 0 if you also want to power your car we can put additional solar panels on the roof and power an electric car off of the roof of your house that's what we call a positive energy home this house is one of those I hope you've enjoyed our 12 steps to Net Zero for more information you can either visit our zero energy plans website at WWF is calm or come to our Clifton View homes website Clifton View homes calm thank you very much you

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