Energy Efficient Heating and Cooling Systems
SBS designs and installs open and closed loop ground source heating and cooling systems, as well as air source heat pump systems for residential and commercial applications.
Indoor Air Quality
SBS is able to determine the tightness of your home and if you could benefit from mechanical ventilation. We also can implement a range of retrofit and new construction services that include high efficiency Heat Recovery Ventilation equipment and low or no VOC materials and sustainably minded products to improve the energy performance and resource use intensity of your building.
New construction Energy Efficient Design
SBS can design and certify your new construction project to LEED and Passivhaus. Let us help you make the best possible decisions when it comes to energy efficiency and sustainable energy systems. We are accredited to varify to the Passivhaus and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) programs.
This is a client’s home in the design stage. SBS was contracted by the owner to help the building to achieve Net Zero Energy use. SBS created envelope details, made recommendations on water usage reduction, designed a gray water and rainwater catchment system, assisted with mechanical equipment selection, performed energy modeling, and performed an alternative energy assessment on the building.
SBS-Solar Top-8 tips for reducing energy consumption:
- Poor attic air sealing and insulation can represent up to 80% of conditioned air losses. Attics are also typically the easiest place to retrofit insulation and air sealing producing favorable paybacks.
- Uninsulated conditioned basements can represent up to 50% of heat loss in a home. Poorly insulated crawlspaces can represent 15% or more of total heat loss in a home. These areas are important to properly seal and insulated from a energy and indoor air quality perspective.
- Air leakage in buildings represents 5%-40% of space conditioning costs. Typical air sealing measures such as caulking and weatherstipping usually pay for themselves within a year. Leaky homes and duct systems can also lead to poor indoor air quality and moisture issues. SBS performance testing with our Blower Door can determine both the amount of leakage (determining severity) and with the help of our thermal imager we can locate problem areas.
- Duct leakage typically represents 10%-30% of heating and cooling energy. SBS can test the amount of leakage and approximate location with the use of our Duct Blasting equipment, Blower Door, Pressure Pan, and Thermal Imager.
- Water conservation equates to energy conservation. A tremendous amount of water is used in energy production and is wasted in excessive usage. In Montana the average person uses 150-200 gallons of water a day. If we are mindful of our water use we can use 25-50 gallons per day. Low flow fixtures, appliances, and low flush toilets can reduce usage by hundreds of gallons a year and reduce water heating by 50%.
- Optimal settings for programmable thermostat is a 8° setback for at least 8 hours. This setback can save approximately 8% a year on my heating and cooling bills. Northwestern Energy provides a $30 rebate for each unit purchased (not to exceed the purchase price up to (2) units per household and Montana State provides Energy Conservation Installation Tax Credit for 25% of the cost of the units.
- Keep your water heater at 120°F can save up to 15% in energy costs.
- A phantom load is electricity used by a device when it is turned off. Nationally, phantom loads make up approximately 6% of our energy consumption. This translates into billions of dollars spent and countless amounts of pollution emitted into our air. You can mitigate these loads by using power strips and turning them off when not in use or unplugging devices. Another option is a Smart Strip which is a power strip that automatically shuts off when there is no major load detected. Some equipment is impractical to turn off and the best option is purchase Energy Star devices that use less electricity. Most wall cube transformers (the cube shaped devices on power cords) are 20-40% efficient when plugged in and should always be unplugged or turned off when not in use.