Articles - November, 2011

A Greener Use for Beetle-Killed Trees

Colorado has millions of acres of pines throughout its forests that have been killed by an infestation of beetles. New Town Builders, a residential homebuilder in Denver, Colorado, has begun using salvaged wood from these trees for the structural framing of homes it is constructing. The company was approached about building a single demonstration home using wood from lodgepole pine trees which had been killed by the mountain pine beetle. New Town found that the wood was discolored but structurally sound and has now begun using the “blue wood” for all of their framing.

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The Colonoscopy of Energy Efficiency

Earlier this week, the Shelton Group released its seventh annual Energy Pulse report, which has 450 pages of analysis, charts, graphs, and crosstabs based on the survey of 1,502 Americans.  I haven’t seen the $5,000 report but would like to share some takeaways from a release and executive summary.  Particularly, of the respondents, 42% had installed high-efficiency windows, 39% had installed extra insulation, 37% had installed higher efficiency HVAC systems, and 24% had installed a higher efficiency water heater.

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Energy Underwriting, Smaller Homes, Reducing Energy Bills, + Batt Performance

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Illuminate and Insulate with CanCoverIt

David Hanacek of EcoCycle Solutions loves to think up practical, cost-effective building products that make a big impact on efficiency. Take his Flow-Thru Finisher for example, a handy little caulk gun attachment that helps get adhesive exactly where and how you want it.  Before that, it was a clog-free drain device and lightweight steel shipping pallets.  But it’s his new invention, the CanCoverIt, that gets him most excited.   After all, what looks like a ho-hum, odd-looking box is actually a breakthrough invention that can save countless kilowatts and millions of dollars for homeowners. Read more »

New ESL Light Bulbs to Hit Lowe’s Soon

Turns out the new Electron Stimulated Luminescence (ESL) R30 light bulb by Vu1 Corporation, which we first mentioned in January 2011, will be available at Lowes.com in December 2011 and in Lowe’s stores nationwide in February 2012, according to a company statement.  The flood light is expected to retail for $14.98.

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TreeHouse Home Improvement in Austin

This month, to provide a new and smarter approach to the home improvement store experience, TreeHouse opened its first retail location in Austin, Texas. The company will offer an assortment of curated materials and products, such as paints, floor and wall coverings, kitchen and bathroom fixtures, cleaning supplies, storage and organization options, and solar power products, as well as services for flooring, countertop, door and window, smart home system, and solar installations.

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