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Case Studies

This library contains research reports produced by the Building America program and other building science resources used to support this Solution Center. The materials cover both new construction and existing homes. Use the search box and/or the filters to explore hundreds of residential building resources. Access to some references not produced by Building America may require purchase from the publisher. Documents are listed alphabetically. While we continually update our database, links may have changed since posting. Please contact our webmaster if you find broken links.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2009

Case study about new home construction in the hot-dry and mixed-dry climate zones.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2010

Case study describing a building project in the cold and very-cold climate zones.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: January, 2011

Case study describing a building project in the cold and very-cold climate zones.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2010

Case study describing a building project in the cold and very-cold climate zones.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, BSC, NREL
Publication Date: December, 2010

Case study describing a multi-family town home project constructed for the City of Aspen, Colorado, with assistance from the U.S. DOE Building America research team Building Science Corporation and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2009
Builder's Challenge case study.
Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2009

Case study about new home construction in the hot-humid climate, optimizing thermal enclosure, HVAC, water heating and lighting measures.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2009
Builder's Challenge case study.
Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2009

Builder's Challenge case study.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2009
Builder's Challenge case study.
Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: January, 2013

Tankless water heaters can deliver large quantities of hot water under changing load conditions and at a relatively constant temperature, like storage water heaters, but without suffering the standby loss (tank heat loss) of the storage water heaters.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, FSEC, BA-PIRC
Publication Date: January, 2013

Case study about a DOE Building America 2012 Top Innovation on ventilation strategies in hot and humid climates developed and assessed by Florida Solar Energy Center.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a DOE Building America 2012 Top Innovation on the Building America Solution Center, a website developed by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy Building America program to provide builders, contractors, code officials, raters, home owners, etc. with quick access to information on how to...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, CARB, Steven Winter Associates
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study on a DOE Building America 2013 top innovation describing research by the Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), a Building America research team led by Steven Winter Associates, on HVAC ducts located in vented attics that are encapsulated in foam and buried in attic insulation.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, IBACOS, BSC
Publication Date: January, 2013

This case study about a DOE Building America 2013 Top Innovation features a community-scale project in Tucson, AZ, where solar water heaters generated enough hot water per year to recoup the cost of the system within 4 to 6 years.The homes were built by Pulte with technical assistance from DOE Building America research partners...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, PHI, HIRL, BSC, NorthernSTAR, University of Minnesota
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study describing a DOE 2013 top innovation - best practices for the installation of rigid foam insulation on teh exterior of home roofs and walls as a thermal, air, and moisture barrier. Research was conducted by DOE Building America partners Home Innovation Research Labs, Building Science Corporation, and the University of...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, NREL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE 2013 top innovation about best practices for high-efficiency window air conditioning units based on research by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL, LBNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study on a DOE 2013 top innovation about high-performance furnace blowers for heating and cooling describing research by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): NREL, PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a DOE 2013 top innovation profile on Home Performance XML, a data transfer standard that communicates between home performance programs and analysis software, developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): HIRL, PHI, PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study on a DOE 2013 top innovaton about advanced framing techniques for high-performance home construction based on research by a DOE Building America research partner, Home Innovation Research Labs.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): IBACOS, BSC, PHI, HIRL, PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a 2013 DOE top innovation on quality management tools for builders, trades and designers to help eliminate mistakes that would require high-cost rework, based on work by Building America research partners IBACOS, Inc., Building Science Corporation (BSC), and the Home Innovation Research Labs.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): BSC, PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a DOE Building America 2013 Top Innovation on upgrading or replacing windows in existing homes, based on research by Building America research partner Building Science Corporation..

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): ARBI, CARB, SWA, FSEC, BA-PIRC, BSC, IBACOS, PHI, HIRL, PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study on a DOE 2013 top innovation about construction of net-zero energy ready homes, by several builders working with various DOE Building America research partners including Steven Winter Associates, Building Science Corporation, Home Innovation Research Labs, IBACOS, Davis Energy Group, and the Florida Solar Energy Center.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): LBNL, BSC, FSEC, WSU Energy Office, Building Research Council, Southface, PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2014

Case study on a DOE 2014 top innovation on research that was instrumental in developing and gaining adoption of the ASHRAE 62.2 ventilation standard. The research and standards work was conducted by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and Building America research partners Building Science Corporation, Florida Solar Energy Center,...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): CARB, ARBI, Davis Energy Group, PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2014

Case study on a DOE 2014 top innovation about research on high MERV filters used in HVAC systems conducted by Building America research partner Davis Energy Group.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): ARIES, the Levy Partnership, PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2014

Case study on a DOE 2014 top innovation about the development and testing of a new attic insulation method for dense packing the shallow attic space in manufactured homes with blown fiberglass insulation; research was conducted by the Levy Partnership.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): LBNL, PARR, PNNL
Publication Date: December, 2014

Case study describing a DOE 2014 top innovation on development of a standardized testing method for testing the air leakage of HVAC air handlers and furnace cabinets developed by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Author(s): PNNL, BARA
Organization(s): PNNL, BARA
Publication Date: December, 2014

Case study on a DOE 2014 top innovation about research leading to use of the Home Energy Rating System (HERS) software to auto-generate a fact-filled Green and Energy Efficiency Addendum intended for real estate appraisers for every home rated by a RESNET-certified HERS rater. Research was conducted by DOE research partner Building Media...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: March, 2015

Building America Optimized Solution in the cold and very cold climates.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: March, 2015

Building America Optimized Solution in the hot-dry and mixed-dry climate.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: March, 2015

Building America Optimized Solution in the hot-humid climate.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: March, 2015

Building America Optimized Solution in the marine climate.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: March, 2015

Building America Optimized Solution in the mixed-humid climate.

Author(s): PNNL, ORNL
Organization(s): PNNL, ORNL
Publication Date: December, 2010

Case study about a 20-unit community of energy-efficient duplexes in Massachusetts that incorporated solar water heating and photovoltaics.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: January, 2013

Case study about the first certified DOE Zero Energy Ready Home—the “Wilson Residence” in Winter Park, Florida.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in west Connecticut that scored HERS 39 without solar PV. The 3,000 ft2 two-story home has R-33 double-walls, R-72 flat roof with closed-cell foam and blown cellulose, an ERV, and LED lighting.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Exeter, Rhode Island, that scored HERS 43 without PV. This 2,000 ft2 custom home has a spray- foamed attic and walls, plus rigid foam sheathing, ducted mini-split heat pumps, and an HRV.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a Zero Energy Ready Home construction project in the marine climate.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Seattle, WA, that scored HERS 34 without PV. This 2,000 ft2 system home has R-45 double-stud walls, an unvented flat roof with 2 inches of spray foam plus 18 inches blown cellulose, R-42 XPS under slab, triple-pane windows, and a ductless mini-split heat pump.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: January, 2013

Case study of a DOE Challenge Home in Winter Park FL that scored HERS 57 without PV or HERS -7 with PV. This 4,305 ft2 custom home has autoclaved aerated concrete walls, a sealed attic with R-20 spray foam, and ductless mini-split heat pumps.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready in Long Island, NY, that scored HERS 43 without PV. This 5,088 ft2 custom home has R-25 double-stud walls, a vaulted roof with R-40 blown cellulose, R-10 XPS under slab, a hydro air system with 91% efficient boiler for forced air and radiant floor heat, and 100% LED lights.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Herriman, UT, that scored HERS 40 without PV, -1 with PV. This 4,111 ft2 production home has R-23 advanced framed walls, and a vented attic with R-60 blown fiberglass.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: October, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Ithaca, NY, that scored HERS 50 without PV. These 1,160 ft2 affordable town houses have R-20 advance framed walls, R-52 blown cellulose in attic, radiant heat with 92.5 AFUE boiler, and triple-pane windows.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Ellenton FL that scored HERS 53 without PV, HERS 23 with PV. This 1,143 ft2 affordable home has R-23 ICF walls, a spray-foamed sealed attic, solar hot water, and a ducted mini-split heat pump.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Phoenix AZ that scored HERS 58 without PV or HERS 38 with PV. This 1,700 ft2 affordable home has R-21 framed walls, a sealed closed-cell spray foamed attic, an air-source heat pump with forced air, and a solar combo system that provides PV, hot water, and space heating.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Frederick MD that scored HERS 43 without PV, HERS 28 with PV. This 4,516 ft2 custom home comes standard with a geothermal heat pump, SIP walls, spray-foamed unvented roof, and ERV.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: April, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Old Greenwich CT, that scored HERS 42 without PV or HERS 20 with PV. This 2,700 ft2 custom home has advanced framed walls with R-24 blown cellulose plus R-7.5 EPS rigid foam, membrane-coated OSB, a close-cell spray foamed attic, R-13 closed-cell spray foam under the slab and on basement walls, an...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Libertyville IL that scored HERS 45 without PV. This 2,763 ft2 custom home has advanced framed walls with R-20 of open-cell spray foam, R-49 open-cell spray-foam sealed attic, an HRV, and a tankless water heater for hydro coil furnace with high-velocity, small-diameter ducts.

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study about a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Devens MA that scored HERS 35 without PV or HERS -37 with PV. This 2,508 ft2 custom home has R-46 double-stud walls with open–cell spray foam, a vented attic with R-67 blown cellulose, plus R-10 rigid XPS under the slab, R-20 closed-cell spray foam on basement walls, triple-pane windows,...

Author(s): PNNL
Organization(s): PNNL
Publication Date: September, 2013

Case study of a DOE Zero Energy Ready Home in Devens MA that scored HERS 34 without PV or HERS -21 with PV. This 3,168 ft2 custom home has R-46 double-stud walls, a vented attic with R-67 blown cellulose, plus R-10 rigid XPS under the slab, R-20 closed-cell spray foam on basement walls, triple-pane windows, and mini-split ductless heat pumps....

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