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Insulate & Weatherize (eBook)

SKU# 077604


Bruce Harley

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  • Product # 077604
  • Type PDF Download
  • ISBN 978-1-62113-703-0
  • Published Date 2012
  • Pages 240
  • Photos 240
  • Drawings 35

The appliances we use…the lights we turn on…these two items alone in our homes can account for upward of 40% of total energy dollars spent. For those who want to save money (and who doesn’t?) by becoming more energy efficient—and for those who want to go a step further and embrace the latest strategies in renewable and alternative energy systems—Insulate and Weatherize is about to lead the way.

It's been 10 years since the first edition of Insulate and Weatherize was a smash hit. In this completely revised and expanded edition, the advances in science and technology shine brightly to walk homeowners through the many solutions for basic energy, air-flow problems, heating and cooling systems, appliances and lights, mixed climate issues, and alternative energy strategies that are doable and extremely efficient. With Insulate and Weatherize at hand, home energy costs won’t soar through the roof, especially if there’s a solar panel or two on it.


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Table of Contents

Energy Basics
Understanding Heat Transfer 
Defining the Thermal Boundary 
Energy, Moisture, and Building Durability 
Air Barriers and Indoor Air Quality
Weighing Costs and Benefits 

Sealing Air Leaks
Air-Sealing Priorities 
Attic Air-Sealing
Basement/Crawlspace Air-Sealing 
Sidewall Air-Sealing 
Weatherstripping Doors and Hatches 

Ventilation Systems
Do I Need a Ventilation System? 
Simple Ventilation Systems
Central Ventilation Systems 

Insulating a House
Attic Insulation 
Sloped Ceilings 
Insulating Walls 
Insulating Floors 
Insulating Foundation Walls 

Window and Energy Basics 
Replacing Windows 
Improving Existing Windows 

Heating Systems
Simple Conservation 
Heat Pumps 
Electric-Resistance Heat 
Hot-Water and Steam Boilers 
Upgrading and Replacing Heating Equipment

Cooling Basics 
Reducing Loads 
Maintenance and Upgrades 
New Air-Conditioning Systems 

Hot Water 
Hot-Water Conservation 

Maintenance and Efficiency
Replacing Hot-Water Systems 

Consider the Big Picture 
Built-Up Walls and Roofs for High R-Values 
Moisture Control 
Mechanical Systems (Heat, Air-Conditioning, Hot Water, Ventilation)

Appliances, Electronics, and Lighting
The Impact of Lights and Appliances 

Renewable and Alternative Energy
Photovoltaics: Solar Electricity 
Solar Thermal Systems 
Other Technologies for Electric Generation 
Solid Fuels 


When I wrote the first edition of Insulate and Weatherize in 2002, my hope was to put good-quality information in the hands of homeowners, do-it-yourselfers, builders, and energy professionals. Forty-five thousand copies later, I’ve heard countless stories of people using the book with excellent results. One even asked me, “How could you possibly make it any better?” It can be difficult to improve on a good thing, and certainly the basics haven’t changed much. Huge amounts of energy are still wasted via hidden air leaks you can stick your arm through, poorly insulated attics and walls, leaky ducts, inefficient heating and cooling systems, and cheap water heaters that still rely on 1950s technology. The solutions haven’t changed very much, either: Seal the leaks and insulate your house and ducts, and buy better equipment. Most of what you need for success depends on attention to detail and commitment to getting the job done right, and the benefits still include lower monthly bills, better comfort, improved air quality, and increased control of moisture.

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