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Library

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): Hoeschele, Springer, German, Staller, Zhang
Organization(s): ARBI, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Davis Energy Group
Publication Date: August, 2012

Report about proper water heater selection developed to provide step-by-step procedures for evaluating preferred cost-effective options for energy efficient water heater alternatives based on local utility rates, climate, and anticipated loads.

Author(s): Burdick
Organization(s): IBACOS
Publication Date: June, 2013

This Strategy Guideline covers the pros and cons of compact air distribution systems and the decision criteria that must be considered early in the whole-house design process. 

Author(s): Zoeller
Organization(s): CARB, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: March, 2009

Information sheet about buried ducts.

Author(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Organization(s): NREL
Publication Date: June, 2017

Standard Work Specifications (SWS) are a major component of the Guidelines for Home Energy Professionals project and define the minimum requirements to ensure that the work performed during home energy upgrades is effective, durable, and safe.

Author(s): Department of Energy
Organization(s): DOE
Publication Date: August, 2010

Presentation providing information about correctly installing ductwork in new and existing homes.

Author(s): Shapiro, Puttagunta, Owens
Organization(s): CARB, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: February, 2012

Document with evaluation of 14 heat pump water heaters (including three recently released HPWH products) installed in existing homes in the northeast region of the United States.

Author(s): Arena
Organization(s): CARB, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: May, 2013

Document intended for designers and installers of hydronic heating systems interested in maximizing the overall system efficiency of condensing boilers when coupled with baseboard convectors. It is applicable to new and retrofit projects.

Author(s): Hudon, Merrigan, Burch, Maguire
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: August, 2012

Report identifying the target market for solar water heaters and potential pathways and cost/performance targets that must be met for these systems to realize large energy savings.

Author(s): Ueno, Loomis
Organization(s): Building Science Corporation

Report on the long-term performance of mini-split heat pumps.

Author(s): Winkler
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: September, 2011

Report proposing mini-split heat pumps as a new retrofit option to replace resistance heating in the Pacific Northwest.

Author(s): Sparn, Hudon, Christensen
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: September, 2011

Report presenting lab evaluation of five heat pump water heaters available in the US market today.

Author(s): McIlvaine, Beal
Organization(s): FSEC
Publication Date: June, 2014

Report describing as-found interior platform return plenums, the magnitude of their contribution to the total amount of duct leakage, and techniques and results of retrofits executed by the HVAC trade during equipment replacement.

Author(s): Dentz, Henderson
Organization(s): ARIES, Levy Partnership
Publication Date: April, 2012

Report evaluating the relative effectiveness of various control and distribution strategies to improve hydronic space heating performance in existing low-rise multifamily buildings

Author(s): Arena
Organization(s): CARB, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: January, 2013

Expert meeting held to review and discuss results and future plans for research to improve the performance of hydronic heating systems using condensing boilers and baseboard convectors.

Author(s): Stecher
Organization(s): IBACOS, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: July, 2011

Expert meeting held to discuss simplified space conditioning systems in low load homes, including the relationship between advanced thermal enclosures, space conditioning systems and comfort.

Author(s): Rowley, Kerr, Brank
Organization(s): PARR, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Gas Technology Institute, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, CNT Energy, Future Energy Enterprises
Publication Date: October, 2012

Document reviewing of the current northern Illinois energy efficiency retrofit programs.

Author(s): U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Organization(s): EPA
Publication Date: November, 2015

This report is designed to meet ASHRAE 62.2-2010/2013 and ANSI/ACCA’s 5 QI-2015 protocol, thereby improving the performance of HVAC equipment in new homes when compared to homes built to minimum code.

Author(s): Cummings, Withers
Organization(s): BA-PIRC, Florida Solar Energy Center, FSEC
Publication Date: December, 2011

Research study describing experiments run in an unoccupied 1600 ft2 house to evaluate the delivered performance as well as the relative performance of a SEER 21 variable capacity heat pump versus a SEER 13 heat pump.

Author(s): Cummings, Withers, Kono
Organization(s): BA-PIRC, Florida Solar Energy Center, FSEC

Report on variable-capacity air conditioning and heat pump units.

Author(s): Mallay
Organization(s): HIRL
Report on heating and cooling air-distribution ducts that are insulated, installed close to the ceiling in a vented attic and covered with attic insulation to minimize energy loss.
Author(s): Mallay
Organization(s): Home Innovation Research Labs

Report on heating and cooling air-distribution ducts that are insulated, installed close to the ceiling in a vented attic and covered with attic insulation to minimize energy loss.

Author(s): Gilbride, Baechler, Hefty, Hand, Love
Organization(s): Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Publication Date: August, 2011

Report providing information about energy-efficient heating, ventilation, and cooling (HVAC) equipment options to help homeowners cut their energy use, reduce their carbon footprint, and increase their homes comfort, health, and safety.

Author(s): Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings
Organization(s): CARB, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: June, 2004

Report describing the recommended best practices to achieve energy savings without compromising health or safety.

Author(s): Springer, Dakin, Backman
Organization(s): ARBI, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Davis Energy Group
Publication Date: July, 2012

Research study estimating potential energy savings relative to conventional ducted air distribution, and identifying equipment requirements, costs, and barriers.

Author(s): International Code Council
Organization(s): ICC
Publication Date: August, 2017

Standard addressing the design and installation of mechanical systems through requirements emphasizing performance, public health, and safety.

Author(s): International Code Council
Organization(s): ICC
Publication Date: May, 2014

Standard addressing the design and installation of mechanical systems through requirements emphasizing performance, public health, and safety.

Author(s): International Code Council
Organization(s): ICC
Publication Date: April, 2011

Internationally, code officials recognize the need for a modern, up-to-date mechanical code addressing the design and installation of mechanical systems through requirements emphasizing performance. The International Mechanical Code®, in this 2009 edition, is designed to meet these needs through model code regulations that safeguard the...