Top 5 Winter Energy Upgrades

1. Attic Insulation & Air Sealing If you have old or non-existent attic insulation, this will be your most cost-effective upgrade for winter. Why? Hot air rises. Your furnace is working hard to heat the home, and without insulation you’re losing most of that energy via conduction through the attic and ceiling. The hotter that air […]

How to Choose the Right Furnace

Only installed 1 flue to exhaust and not a 2nd intake

When a furnace or air conditioner is installed in a building, it becomes a part of a system. The device’s actual performance – regardless of whatever ratings it boasts – will depend almost entirely on how it interacts with that system. With that in mind, here are the three most important factors to consider when purchasing an HVAC […]

LED Lighting – Cool, Easy, Efficient

LED600ICA

If your home is getting too warm this year, you may be thinking about cooling upgrades. Here’s a tip: don’t immediately jump to conclusions about your AC unit, as this can lead to many burnt bridges if done incorrectly (see near the bottom of this article). Instead, start with some small, non-invasive upgrades and go from there. Consider an […]

Should I Get an Energy Audit?

Short answer: If you own a home, then yes, you should get an energy audit. Longer answer: Let me ask you a few questions. Is your home too cold in the winter? Too hot in the summer? Are temperatures uneven from room to room? Is your energy bill high? (Specifically, your heating/cooling costs) Do you have concerns […]

Air Sealing and Indoor Air Quality

  We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Air Sealing a home’s points of leakage is the first step in making a home efficient. But, you might ask, what about making the home comfortable and healthy? It turns out that air sealing is essential for air quality as well. Here’s why. Indoor Air Quality When […]

Should I Replace My Furnace?

My electricity bill is too high. My heater is too noisy, and wakes me up at night. Some rooms are too hot and others are cold. The air feels stuffy or musty. My heater has stopped working entirely. Please read the following before replacing your furnace. The long-term effects of making the right (or wrong) […]

Hydronic Forced Air Heating Advantages

Combined-Hydronic-Air-Handler-Heating-System

Hydronics refers to the use of a liquid as a medium of heat transfer in heating or cooling systems. Specifically, a Combined Hydronic Air Handler, often described as a “hot water furnace,” uses hot water to heat a home.   How does a Combined Hydronic Air Handler system work? It uses two appliances in conjunction: […]

SB-350: Building the Future of Energy Efficiency in California

UD-Calif503-01-08-2015

  In September 2015, California legislature passed SB-350: the Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act, also referred to as the 50/50/50 plan. There are two main goals for this plan (originally there were three, until the oil companies got involved). Objective 1: (quoting directly from the bill) To increase from 33 percent to 50 percent, the procurement […]

Soundproofing and Insulation

insulation__15_denim

  Completely soundproofing an existing home is fairly difficult and costly on its own. There are a lot of “tips and tricks” out there, but the fact is, the only way to fully soundproof a home is by tearing into your walls and/or ceiling. The upside is, if you’re thinking of redoing your insulation or […]

Insulation Materials: the Good and the Terrible

IMG_1176

  Sometimes, you get what you pay for. But most of the time, it pays to do a little research first. Today we want to give an example of the importance of making educated purchases. There are a variety of insulation materials to choose from, and most have their strengths and weaknesses. However, one stands out […]

Energy Upgrade Financing in the CA Bay Area

In the California bay area, energy and water efficiency are more important, and more available, than ever before. The CaliforniaFirst PACE financing program now covers nearly all cities in the bay area (Concord was recently added to the list). Eco Performance Builders is an approved contractor for this program. We’ve used this program already with […]

Air Conditioner: Repair or Replace?

Rbs-e3

If there’s nothing wrong with your air conditioner, but your electricity bill seems too high during those hot months, you may want to schedule an energy audit. During this process, we will thoroughly evaluate the energy efficiency of your house, and recommend the most cost-effective combination of upgrades. If you’re deciding whether to repair or […]

Top 5 Water Saving Upgrades and Fixes

gs1

1. On-Demand Water Circulation: A must-have for water conservation Demand Recirculation Systems are a great way to save water and energy, especially if you have remotely placed water fixtures. They are easy to install and can fit into nearly any plumbing setup. 2. Greywater Systems: Consider during new builds, or when remodeling a bathroom “Greywater” […]

ZNE Home With Guaranteed $0 Energy Bills — Built and Sold by EPB

11-jewel-ext-2-mls-2-2

  We have completed and sold our ZNE (Zero Net Energy) build in the Montclair Hills.  We are very excited about this build because it is the culmination of everything we have learned from decades of building and retrofitting homes.  We have put our heart and soul into it and made it the best performing, […]

10 Summer Energy Saving Tips from Eco Performance Builders

ecobee thermostat

1. Schedule an energy assessment This is the first step in improving your overall home performance. A technician will test your home and build an energy model of the home and a report of all the findings. From there they will recommend cost-effective upgrades, show you how to turn your home into a net-zero energy […]