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building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 09:47 AM   #1
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building an energy efficient home

We are considering building a home in Minnesota. We want it to be small and energy efficient. No McMansion "projects" for us. Anyone know of general resources to start looking at to find information on building small efficient homes suitable for northern climates?
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 09:52 AM   #2
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Re: building an energy efficient home

I think I may be able to help. Follow the advice of the Eskimos.

Build this:

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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 09:56 AM   #3
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Up yours!

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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 09:58 AM   #4
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Sunset magazine (probably not something readily available in minnesota) has done some extensive high efficiency building stuff with "project homes".

Look here for a start...has products and companies used.

Basically, thick walls, lots of insulation, photovoltaic arrays, thick windows, lots of materials made from recycled stuff.

http://www.sunset.com/sunset/marketp...844996,00.html
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 09:59 AM   #5
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
Up yours!

Goddammmit! And i was that close! Had I known that this was the exact moment to harass, I would have been there.
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 10:00 AM   #6
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Martha! Behave yourself! :

CFB, close but no cigar!

Along the same lines as Justin's suggestion, but much more pracitcal, how about straw bale construction? Very earth friendly, highly efficient, and you can't get much "greener".

http://www.greenbuilder.com/sourcebook/strawbale.html
http://www.thelaststraw.org/

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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 10:27 AM   #7
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
Up yours!

Sorry to offend. Just trying to be helpful. At least you know you DON'T want an igloo for a house.
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 10:33 AM   #8
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Re: building an energy efficient home

And knowing what you dont want is half the battle.

Although, the doorway in those things would certainly be height compatible with martha.
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 10:38 AM   #9
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Quote:
Originally Posted by justin
Sorry to offend.
hey, I used the
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 10:39 AM   #10
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Re: building an energy efficient home

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Originally Posted by (Cute Fuzzy Bunny)


Although, the doorway in those things would certainly be height compatible with martha.
Too late. Wahoo told me to be good.
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 10:41 AM   #11
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
hey, I used the
I know.
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 11:38 AM   #12
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
Too late. Wahoo told me to be good.
Damn you wahooooooooooooo (head tipped up, arms raised).....
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 12:31 PM   #13
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Twenty yrs ago we built an "Energy Star" home in Wisconsin. Our builder worked with the local utility company (WI Public Service) on this endeavor.
Some of the items I remember from the list are double-pane low-e windows (Anderson brand), lots of south-facing windows (none on east/west sides), R-27 walls, R-45 ceilings, and energy efficient appliances.
I can tell you that a house our size and in our area has a yearly gas/electric bill of $2498. (according to utility co. website and prior to this yr's increases) We averaged just under $1500. I can also tell you that our bills for the last three months have been $185, 176, and 154. (we'll go as low as 80 in the summer) We've compared bills with two closet neighbors and they are more than double (and smaller homes) our bill.
Start with the utility company. And ask about rebates/incentives for building an energy efficient home.
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 02:14 PM   #14
 
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Some of the links on this page look good:

Google Search
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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 03:40 PM   #15
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
We are considering building a home in Minnesota.* We want it to be small and energy efficient.* No McMansion "projects" for us.?
I think this is a great idea. Before long, much of our housing stock may be functionally obsolete because of high fuel prices. Too bad we had to cede Southern California to Mexico.

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Re: building an energy efficient home
Old 02-20-2006, 06:10 PM   #16
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Re: building an energy efficient home

Martha,

Houses built with Structural Insulated Panels are quite popular in the mountain towns in Colorado. An architect friend of mine there uses them almost exclusively. The panels* consist of a core layer of foam sandwiched between two layers of plywood or oriented strand board. Among the advantages of SIP's are high R-factors, great strength/structural integrity, quick construction and ease with which you can build those high volume soaring interiors. Lots of info available via Google. I would imagine there must be someone in your area using them. And consider using those in floor radiant heating systems. They're great in a cold climate.*

yko
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