Final Performance Report
TNAR 2020 exemplifies efficiency and innovation, showcasing cutting-edge products from manufacturers all over the world. Two Trails, Inc. worked closely with NAHB’s Leading Suppliers Council, Element Building Company and Architecture by Phil Kean to ensure the highest possible efficiency is being achieved. The progress and proposed efficiency elements are displayed below.
• Unvented and air sealed attic with a combination of Installed Building Products’ open-cell, polyurethane foam insulation and Fi-Foil Hy-Fi Hybrid Wall & Ceiling reflective insulation for a total insulation value of R-38
• Ply Gem Windows and patio doors with low-e coating, argon gas fill, and U-Values of 0.40 and SHGC of 0.25 to limit solar heat gain and optimize air tightness
• Exterior walls insulated using Installed Building Products’ open-cell, polyurethane foam insulation and Hy-Fi reflective insulation and Kingspan GreenGuard extruded polystyrene (XPS) insulation board for a total insulation value of R-33
• AeroSeal’s AeroBarrier aerosol thermal envelope sealer utilized to further reduce envelope leakage
• Large overhangs to aid in protecting the home from the harsh Nevada sun
• Light colored exterior to assist in reflecting the sun
• LG’s Multi-V, Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) System provides space conditioning, with an efficiency of 17.7 SEER
• Multiple Air Handling Units provide individual room climate control
• Mechanical ventilation provided by Air King
• Space conditioning system located entirely within the conditioned space
• Rinnai ENERGY STAR®-rated tankless water heaters with an efficiency (UEF) of 0.93
• Insulated hot water lines utilized throughout the project to reduce heat loss
• 100% energy-efficient LED lighting for all interior and exterior lighting
• LG Signatures’ ENERGY STAR®-rated appliances
• ENERGY STAR®-rated variable speed pool pumps
• 14.62 kW system using 43 LG’s NeON2 V5 340-watt solar panels with 43 Enphase IQ 7+ Microinverters
Energy Efficiency and Innovation
As one of the NAHB’s official show homes, The New American Remodel (TNAR) 2020 is a symbol of energy efficiency and innovation. The home exhibits cutting-edge products from manufacturers all over the world.
TNAR 2020 is designed to exceed the requirements for certification to the Emerald level of the National Green Building Standard™. Its energy-efficient features can be used in homes in a hot climate at any price point with similar energy savings. The home is also targeted to be certified EPA ENERGY STAR® program as well as the Indoor airPLUS program.
Two Trails, Inc. worked closely with Element Building Company to ensure energy efficiency and innovation in TNAR 2020. Without the solar array, this home has a HERS Index of 47! It will be 53% more efficient than the average new code-built home and designed to have an 91% reduction of energy usage from pre-remodel levels. With the 14.62 kW solar array, this home has a registered HERS Index of -17, or 117% more efficient than the average new code-built home, with an 104% reduction in energy use from pre-remodel levels. AeroSeal’s AeroBarrier aerosol thermal envelope sealer was utilized to further reduce envelope leakage, resulting in an extremely tight envelope leakage rate of 1.54 ACH(50)!
Energy Efficiency Features
The New American Remodel 2020 achieves a very high level of energy efficiency. The home uses 43, highly efficient solar panels to power its electrical systems, resulting in a 14.62 kW Photovoltaic (PV) system that will generate a 23,814 kWh of energy yearly. This PV array is designed to provide 100% of the annual electric energy needs for the home!
Water Efficiency Features
In addition to energy savings, this home is designed to achieve approximately a 52.24% reduction in water use from pre- remodel levels. This remarkable water use reduction is made possible using low-flow water fixtures and a high-efficient irrigation system. Water saving features include:
• Kohler low-flow, EPA WaterSense certified 1.2 GPM lavatory faucets and 1.28 GPF toilets
• Natural, indigenous landscaping, with a minimum of turf grass reduces landscaping watering requirements
• High-efficient micro spray, driplines and irrigation controller contributed to the outdoor water use reduction
Indoor Environmental Quality Features
Indoor Environmental Quality encompasses the conditions inside a home, and their effects on residents. The New American Remodeled Home 2020 incorporated innovative strategies, creating an indoor environmental quality that enhance the lives of homeowners, protects occupants’ health, and improves quality of life. Indoor Environmental Quality strategies include:
• Low-VOC paints and finishes and low-VOC interior adhesives and sealants
• MERV 13 space conditioning air filters
• HVAC ducts sealed during construction to prevent pollutants from construction activities from entering the system
• Whole Building ventilation system configured to allow the correct amount of fresh air into the home
• Eco-Friendly cabinets – Formaldehyde free and material certified by the Forest Stewardship Council
• Eco-Friendly flooring – Carpet and Rug Institute’s Green Label certified flooring products
Systems Engineering Approach
The systems-engineering approach unites segments of the building industry that have previously worked independently of one another. The concept is simple: systems-engineering can make America’s homes cost effective to build or retrofit and energy efficient to live in. Energy consumption of new houses can be reduced by as much as 40% with little or no impact on the cost of construction. Similar performance can be achieved in existing homes.
To reach this goal, the Element Building Company’s team are working with their building partners to produce a home that incorporates energy and material saving strategies from design through construction. First, the team analyzed and selected cost-effective strategies for improving home performance. Next, the team evaluated design, business, and construction practices within individual partnerships to identify cost savings. Cost savings could then be reinvested to improve energy performance and product quality. For example, a design that incorporates new techniques for tightening the building envelope enabled Element Building Company to install smaller, less expensive heating and cooling systems. The savings generated in this process can then be reinvested in other high-performance features to further reduce energy use. Proving the efficiency of the system-engineering approach to construction, this home’s preliminary HERS Index, without the use of the photovoltaic system is 47, which is 53% more efficient than the construction of the average new home. With the solar array, this home has a registered HERS Index of -17, with a projected annual energy cost of -$232!
The “pilot” or “test” home is the field application of solution design. The team assisted Element Building Company in designing TNAR 2020 in accordance to strategic design, modeling to maximize building efficiency of each system and directed the team to increase efficiency through cost effective decisions. Before additional houses are built, these changes are incorporated into the design. This process of analysis, field implementation, reanalysis, and design alteration facilitate ultimate home performance once a design or retrofit strategy is ready for use in production or community-scale housing.
Understanding the interaction between each component in the home is paramount to the systems-engineering approach. Throughout design and construction, the relationship between building site, envelope, mechanical systems, and other factors is carefully considered. Recognizing that features of one component can dramatically affect the performance of others enables the Element Building Company’s building team to engineer energy-saving strategies at little or no extra cost.