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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): Lubliner, Fuess, Gordon, Kingrey
Organization(s): BAIHP
Publication Date: February, 2009
Report about a building project in the marine climate.
Author(s): Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings
Organization(s): CARB, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: November, 2010

Research study describing demonstration homes that provided a wealth of information for the building community in terms of the science, effort, and cost of increasing the energy efficiency of our nations housing stock.

Author(s): Kerrigan
Organization(s): Building Science Corporation, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: September, 2012

Report describing work conducted by the Building Science Corporation (BSC) Building America Research Teams Energy Efficient Housing Research Partnerships project.

Author(s): Building Science Corporation
Organization(s): Building Science Corporation
Publication Date: December, 2010

Factsheet describing the importance of system charging, superheat and subcooling.

Author(s): Ueno, Bergey, Wytrykowska
Organization(s): Building Science Corporation
Publication Date: September, 2013

Report about partnership to build three communities of net zero houses.

Author(s): Dentz, Ansanelli
Organization(s): ARIES, Levy Partnership
Publication Date: January, 2015

In this project aimed to better understand the current usage of TRVs by key market players in steam and hot water heating and to conduct limited experiments on the effectiveness of new and old TRVs as a means of controlling space temperatures and reducing heating fuel consumption.

Author(s): McNamara
Organization(s): NYSERDA
Publication Date: December, 1995
This report describes the results of a multiyear research project that investigated the energy savings attributable to thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs) installed on one-pipe steam distribution systems.
Author(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Organization(s): ACCA
Publication Date: January, 2010

The Technician's Guide equips practitioners with the knowledge to properly implement all of the measurement procedures required in the HVAC QI Specification.

Author(s): Maguire, Sparn, Hudon, Christensen
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: January, 2012

Document about laboratory testing of five integrated heat pump water heaters (HPWH).

Author(s): Christensen
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: January, 2012

Document on the development of two simple in-home efficiency test methods that can be used by technicians, researchers, or interested homeowners to verify the correct operation and energy efficiency of a homes air conditioning and heating equipment.

Author(s): Williamson, Puttagunta
Organization(s): CARB, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: September, 2013

Report providing performance results of a home's heat pump water heater and whole-house dehumidifier over a six-month period.

Author(s): Building Science Corporation
Organization(s): Building Science Corporation
Publication Date: May, 2009

Information sheet offering general recommendations on supplemental humidity control and outlines viable system configurations.

Author(s): Rudd
Organization(s): Building Science Corporation
Publication Date: July, 2013

This document covers a description of the need and applied solutions for supplemental dehumidification in warm-humid climates, especially for energy efficient homes where the sensible cooling load has been dramatically reduced.

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, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: February, 2012

Report describing the equipment selection of a split system air conditioner and furnace for an example house in Chicago, Illinois, as well as a heat pump system for an example house in Orlando, Florida.

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): Choi, Ludwig, Brand
Organization(s): PARR
Publication Date: August, 2013
Report about results of 10 test buildings in Chicago, studied to identify best practices for methodology, typical costs, and energy savings associated with steam system balancing.
Author(s): Metzger, Goyl, Baechler
Organization(s): Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Publication Date: October, 2017

This research paper outlines residential HVAC advanced controls and sensors. It includes a technology review, applications, maintenance and commissioning, occupant behavior and a summary of the state-of-the-art technologies for advanced controls for residential HVAC.

Author(s): Anesi
Organization(s): Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration (ACHR) News
Publication Date: December, 2014

Article describing how replacing PSC motors with ECMs can boost bottom line and improve customer comfort.

Author(s): Stetcher, Allison
Organization(s): IBACOS, NREL
Publication Date: November, 2012
Report discussing instrumentation methods and field operation characteristics of two GSHPs in test houses, including a comparison between the manufacturers listed COP values and the COPs calculated from field data.
Author(s): Spitler, Xing, Cullin, Fisher, Shonder, Im
Organization(s): Oklahoma State University, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Publication Date: January, 2010

Paper covering a parametric study of foundation heat exchanger-based ground source heat pump systems for several house configurations in a range of European locations, with an emphasis on determining feasible combinations.

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): Department of Energy
Organization(s): DOE
Publication Date: June, 2014

Website with information from DOE about rules and standards for residential air conditioners and heat pumps.

Author(s): Turner, Roux, Walker
Organization(s): Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

This study used an advanced airflow, energy and humidity modeling tool to evaluate the potential for residential mechanical pre-scooling strategies to reduce peak electriciy demand.

Author(s): Butcher
Organization(s): ASHRAE
Publication Date: December, 2011
Article investigating how a linear input/output relationship can be used as a simple model of the performance of a combination hydronic heating system over heating only, DHW only, and combined loads.
Author(s): Southwest Energy Efficiency Project
Organization(s): Southwest Energy Efficiency Project
Publication Date: January, 2007
Report discussing the benefits of modern evaporative cooling systems for use in hot dry climate zones.
Author(s): Siegenthaler
Organization(s): Delmar CENGAGE Learning
Publication Date: January, 2012
Book with indepth information about hydronic systems for residential and commercial buildings.
Author(s): Dentz, Podorson, Varshney
Organization(s): ARIES, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Levy Partnership
Publication Date: May, 2014

This report investigates whether mini-split heat pumps can live up to their potential for one market segment: multifamily retrofits.

Author(s): NMIC
Organization(s): NMIC
Publication Date: April, 2012
Web resource that lays out the pre-work considerations, methods and finishes for installing mechanical insulation.
Author(s): Johnson
Organization(s): CARB, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: September, 2013

Research study outlining results of monitoring a low temperature heat pump.

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

The purpose of this measure guideline on ventilation cooling is to provide information on a cost effective solution for reducing cooling system energy and demand in homes located in hot-dry and cold-dry climates.

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: February, 2014

Report providing step-by-step instructions for heating contractors and hydronic designers for selecting the proper control settings to maximize system performance and improve response time when using a thermostat setback.

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): Schoenbauer, Bohac, Huelman
Organization(s): NorthernSTAR, University of Minnesota
Publication Date: March, 2017

Report describing the installation and operation of forced-air heating and domestic hot water combi systems in residential homes. 

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): Hart
Organization(s): ASHI Reporter
Publication Date: April, 2009

Article describing how to properly manage condensing HVAC equipment.

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): Walker, Stratton
Organization(s): Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, California Energy Commission

Guidance on performance of current diagnostics as well as a draft test method for use in future air flow evaluations.

Author(s): Walker, Stratton
Organization(s): Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Report on performance of current diagnostics as well as a draft test method for use in future air flow evaluations.

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): Brand, Yee, Baker
Organization(s): PARR
Publication Date: August, 2013
Report examining the impacts that common installation practices and age- induced equipment degradation may have on the installed performance of natural gas furnaces, as measured by steady-state efficiency and AFUE.
Author(s): Winkler
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: March, 2012

Presentation on Improving Air-Conditioner and Heat Pump Modeling.

Author(s): Holliday, Martin
Organization(s): Green Building Advisor
Publication Date: March, 2003

Article in Energy Design Update describing the cost and savings benefits of electronically commutated motors (ECMs) for HVAC equipment.

Author(s): Cutler, Winkler, Kruis, Christensen, Brandemuehl
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory, University of Colorado
Publication Date: January, 2013

Report presenting improved air conditioner (AC) and heat pump (HP) modeling methods in the context of whole-building simulation tools.

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): Raymer, Moyer
Organization(s): Tamarack Technologies, Florida Solar Energy Center
Publication Date: July, 2006

Correcting pressure imbalances in your HVAC system can result in a healthier, more efficient home.

Author(s): Gifford
Organization(s): American Boiler Manufacturers Association
Publication Date: June, 2003
Article describing how to use radiator inlet orifices optimize two-pipe steam heating systems.

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