My house is well insulated. For the frame of the house, I used 2x6 boards with R-19 fiberglass insulation. In addition,
I installed 1-inch Styrofoam insulation for the outside walls.
The total thickness of my house walls is 7 and 3/4 inches! My attic is also well insulated; I used R-30 with 2x8s.
I think I must have the best heating/cooling rate. For the last ten heating seasons, I used
about 400 gallons of heating oil. In my area, the average is at least 2,5 times more for a house of similar
size. In the summer, we never need to use air conditioning.
In 2012-2013 heating season I already reduced heating oil consumption additionally thanks to
my three solar supplemental heating systems.
Now I am trying to find the best heating alternatives for my house based on modern resources.
Currently, evacuated tube solar collectors offer the most energy efficient way.
However, typical systems that are limited to 300-500 gallon tanks, do not store enough hot water
even for small house when the weather is very cold and cloudy for a long period of time (3-5 consecutive
days). Storage tanks of bigger size are therefore needed. You also have to pay extra for additinal solar
collectors, that makes a payback period for such projects unattractive.
As an alternative to purchasing a bigger tank, I am trying to find the main pros and cons for hot water storage
in the form of an indoor lap pool (7' x 20(30)' x 4.5'). Of course, it will result in some
energy loss, but at the same time, I can take advantage of the recreational feature, when the water temperature
will drop to a normal (swimming) level.
As an alternative idea you can see my solar supplemental heating systems here
NOTE: Only SRCC-certified products allow you to apply for all applicable federal, state and local
solar hot water incentives, rebates and tax credits, which lower your initial investment, shorten the
payback period of your solar hot water system and increase the overall return on your investment.
Below you can see some houses with insulation defects: