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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): 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...

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: August, 2017

Standard addressing the design and installation of mechanical systems through requirements emphasizing performance, public health, and 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): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Organization(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Publication Date: January, 2011

Standard covering equipment sizing loads for single-family-detached homes, small multi-unit structures, condo­miniums, town houses and manufactured homes.

Author(s): Rutkowski
Organization(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Publication Date: December, 2015
The manual covers residential zoning issues - multiple, single-zone, and central multi-zone systems - and includes advice on working with homeowners to adapt the heating or cooling system design to meet modern home design features.
Author(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Organization(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Publication Date: April, 2013

Standard covering sizing strategies for all types of cooling and heating equipment, as well as how to use comprehensive manufacturer’s performance data on sensible, latent, or heating capacity for various operating conditions. 

Author(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Organization(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Publication Date: January, 2013

Standard providing nationally recognized, manufacturer-endorsed set of inspection tasks for HVAC maintenance.

Author(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Organization(s): Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Publication Date: January, 2015

Standard providing a universally accepted definition for quality installation for residential and commercial heating, ventilating, and air conditioning applications.

Publication Date: January, 2016

Document detailing the requirements, roles, and obligations for participants in an organized effort, ensuring that HVAC installations comply with the ANSI/ACCA 5 QI – 2010 (HVAC Quality Installation Specification) QI Standard.

Author(s): Natural Resources Canada
Organization(s): Natural Resources Canada
Publication Date: April, 2014
Web resource with information for consumers about air source heat pumps.
Author(s): Puttagunta, Shapiro
Organization(s): CARB, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: April, 2012

Report about two test home evaluations that provided valuable data about the true in-field performance of various building mechanical systems and LAMELs.

Author(s): Arena
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Report analyzing design heating loads in superinsulated buildings

Author(s): American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Organization(s): American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Publication Date: January, 2017

Code establishing the rules of safety relating only to pressure integrity for the design, fabrication, and inspection of boilers and pressure vessels during construction.

Author(s): Lyons, Moore, Thompson
Organization(s): BA-PIRC, Newport Ventures
Publication Date: August, 2013

Report summarizing commissioning, short-term testing, utility bill data analysis, and results of on-site monitoring of a deep energy retrofit.

Author(s): Air-Conditioning Heating and Refrigeration Institute
Organization(s): Air-Conditioning Heating and Refrigeration Institute
Publication Date: April, 2009
This directory contains the I=B=R Ratings for cast-iron, steel, aluminum and copper boilers, baseboard and finned tube radiation, indirect-fired water heaters, effective as of the date of this publication.
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): 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): Hendron, Engebrecht
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: January, 2010

Document describing the Building America research benchmark for the residential building program.

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

Report about ventilation system design, including central fan integrated supply (CFIS) system, made up of a 6-inch outdoor air intake duct connected to the return side of the air handler with a fan cycling control to make sure the fan runs a programmed minimum amount of time.

Author(s): Gifford
Organization(s): American Boiler Manufacturers Association
Publication Date: January, 2004
Part 2 of an article discussing how to maximize two-pipe steam systems.
Author(s): Flothow
Organization(s): Energy Efficiency for All, Steven Winter Associates
Publication Date: November, 2015

Report describing strategies to improve the aging steam heating systems in New York City to improve energy efficiency, reduce oil and gas usage, and cut maintenance costs.

Author(s): Schoenbauer, Bohac, Huelman
Organization(s): NorthernSTAR, University of Minnesota
Publication Date: July, 2016

Report describing combined space- and water-heating (combi) systems using a high-efficiency direct-vent burner. 

Author(s): Building Performance Institute
Organization(s): Building Performance Institute
Publication Date: January, 2016

The following combustion appliance safety inspection must be completed to determine if fossil fuel-fired appliances are operating safely under a depressurized condition.

Author(s): Poerschke, Beach
Organization(s): IBACOS
Report onhow space-conditioning systems are operating in the field and if these systems are meeting required standards.
Author(s): Poerschke, Beach
Organization(s): IBACOS
Report onhow space-conditioning systems are operating in the field and if these systems are meeting required standards.
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): 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): Aldrich, Williamson
Organization(s): CARB, Steven Winter Associates, SWA
Publication Date: November, 2014

Research report anayzing the results of a large retrofit project, turining an old school into near zero energy consumption apartments in Greenfield MA.

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): Less, Walker
Organization(s): Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Publication Date: January, 2015

Part of a larger LBNL report (Deep Energy Retrofit Guidance for the Building America Solutions Center), the Source Energy and Carbon Decisions chapter helps users carefully assess the impacts of switching from gas to electricity for heating end-uses, using source energy and/or carbon emissions assessments.

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

The main principle of smart ventilation used in this study is to shift ventilation from time periods with large indoor-outdoor temperature differences, to periods where these differences are smaller, and their energy impacts are expected to be less.

Author(s): AHRI
Organization(s): AHRI
Publication Date: January, 2012
Online database with efficiency information about residential HVAC systems and commercial refrigeration equipment.
Author(s): NEEA
Organization(s): NEEA
Publication Date: June, 2014
Online resource about ductless heating & cooling systems for installers, utilities, manufacturers and distributors.
Author(s): Roth, Sehgal, Akers
Organization(s): FCSES
Publication Date: March, 2013
Research report with results from field tests in two homes in Austin, Texas, from October 2011 to June 2012 to evaluate the comfort performance of ductless mini-split heat pumps
Author(s): Chasar, Martin
Organization(s): BA-PIRC, Florida Solar Energy Center, FSEC
Publication Date: April, 2013

Report demonstrating how the initiative achieves Building America (BA) goals of 30%-50% energy savings in multifamily dwellings in the hot-humid climate zone.

Author(s): Department of Energy
Organization(s): DOE
Publication Date: February, 2018

Website from the U.S. Department of Energy providing consumers with information on saving energy and using renewable energy technologies.  

Author(s): Department of Energy
Organization(s): DOE
Publication Date: June, 2012

Online reference containing general information about geothermal heat pumps.

Author(s): Maguire, Burch, Merrigan, Ong
Organization(s): National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Publication Date: July, 2013

Report investigating performance and energy savings potential of heat pump water heaters.

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): Yee, Baker, Brand, Wells
Organization(s): PARR, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance
Publication Date: August, 2013

Report using pre- and post-system upgrade data to analyze the energy savings associated with Iowas HVAC SAVE program for space heating.

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): Martin, Withers, McIlvaine, Chasar, Beal
Organization(s): BA-PIRC, Florida Solar Energy Center, FSEC
Publication Date: February, 2018

This report evaluates the performance of variable-capacity comfort systems, with a focus on inverter-driven, variable-capacity systems, as well as proposed system enhancements.

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): Architectural Energy Corporation
Organization(s): Architectural Energy Corporation
Publication Date: November, 2011
Article describing RESNET guidance on evaporative coolers.
Author(s): Mohalley
Organization(s): Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration (ACHR) News
Publication Date: December, 2016

Article describing benefits of ECM motors and how they can be installed as retrofit motors in HVAC equipment.

Author(s): Brand
Organization(s): PARR, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Gas Technology Institute
Publication Date: March, 2012

Expert meeting identifying installation practices that provide the best installed efficiency for residential gas furnaces, explain how AFUE and field efficiency can differ, and investigate the impact of installation practices on the efficiency and long-term durability of the furnace.

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): 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): Herk, Poerschke
Organization(s): IBACOS
Publication Date: April, 2015
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) is interested in finding cost-effective solutions for deep energy retrofits (DERs) related to exterior wall insulation in a cold climate, with targets of 50% peak load reduction and 50% space conditioning energy savings.

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