April 7, 2011 Adapting to Global Climate Change

Extreme weather events

TJ’s acknowledges that there have been some notable extreme weather events regionally, nationally, and even, globally.

  • Increased severity of tropical storms, hurricanes, and tornadoes
  • More floods
  • More droughts / wildfires
  • Longer heat waves
  • Increased snowfall
  • Severe ice storms

Whether these events are attributed to climate change is not the point.  They are happening and we have to adapt to them.

It is no longer enough to just use average yearly temperature, for example, to calculate heat loads.  We must take into account what could happen to ensure that our systems have the capacity to adapt to possible extreme weather events.  Here, in New England, that could mean hotter than normal summers, more heat waves, colder than normal winters, increased snowfall, ice storms and flooding conditions.

Smarter system design / Renewable energy choices

Is the answer just providing more capacity, or being smarter in our system designs and energy choices?  We think, in order to protect our natural resources and save our customers money, we must be smarter in our system designs.  We need to consider extreme weather possibilities, while taking care not to oversize a system.

Additionally, we must always be ready to offer renewable energy choices, such as geothermal energy and wood pellets, so we protect the natural world.  This will inevitably save us all money as well.  By using renewable energy and designing our HVAC systems to run more efficiently, we are adapting for future events, without compromising our natural resources and even lessening our need for “grid” energy.

A few examples of how TJ’s designs smarter systems

We use outdoor reset controls to adjust a boiler’s water temperature based on the outdoor temperature.  The control constantly measures outdoor temperature to determine the optimum temperature needed to heat your home.  This is a simple approach to save significant energy.  In fact, for every three degrees that the boiler’s water temperature is lowered, there is a 1% fuel reduction.

We install radiant heat, often coupled with geothermal systems, to provide homeowners with efficient, comfortable heat.  Radiant heat produces even temperatures throughout the home, thereby eliminating “cold spots” and wasted energy.  When installed in conjunction with a geothermal energy source, there can often be significant energy savings.

A great way to manage the temperatures in the home is a Control4 automation system, which allows homeowners to control their heating systems at home or remotely, anywhere in the world.  Your wireless Control4 thermostats can be programmed to certain temperatures when you are home or not.  If your schedule changes, a keypad near the front door, or a hot button on your iPhone, can automatically signal to the home that you are out and adjust the temperature accordingly.

To save even more energy and money, we recommend Eragy Home Energy Monitoring, in combination with a Control4 automation system.  Eragy offers real-time energy monitoring so you better understand how much energy you are using BEFORE you get your bill.  They also offer remote access so you can view this information at home or on the road.  Alerts can let you know if you are in danger of exceeding your monthly budget.  Real-time monitoring can save homeowners 20% or more on their electric bill.  You are always in control of how you use your energy.  Want to save up to 30%?  Upgrade to Eragy Home Energy Monitoring, Eragy’s intelligent home energy management system, and let the system save you energy and money automatically.

TJ’s can do it all for you

Let us design your system and help you save money!