DOE Tour of Zero: Overlook at the Dells by Mandalay Homes
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Mandalay Homes built this 1,962-square-foot production home in Prescott, Arizona, to the high performance criteria of the U.S. Department of Energy Zero Energy Ready Home (ZERH) program.
The tile roofs and stucco and stone siding blend in with other homes in Prescott, but this home's exceptional energy efficiency stands out.
Xeriscaping, drip irrigation, and artificial turf minimize water use in this high-desert locale.
Covered patios shade windows from solar heat gain and invite natural ventilation and cooling during temperate evenings.
Before the drywall was painted, Mandalay Homes used a new whole-house aerosol spray sealant product that helped them achieve a very tight leakage rate of only 0.64 air changes per hour at 50 Pascals pressure, which means less cool air will escape and less dust will enter the home.
Spray foam fills the cavities of the advance framed 2-by-6, 24-inch on-center walls and lines the roof deck of the unvented attic.
ENERGY STAR appliances, advanced technology LED lighting, and WaterSense-labeled fixtures add to energy and water savings.
The highly efficient two-stage heat pump (9.6 HSPF, 17 SEER) and ducts are protected from the fierce Arizona sun in the insulated attic.
The builder predicts the home will perform far better than the calculated HERS 20 with PV and may produce enough energy to power both the house and an electric car.
The home is equipped with 3.64 kW of solar photovoltaic panels on the roof plus a 10-kW battery that can store surplus power when the sun is high for use when the sun goes down, extending the time the home is operating off its own power to more than 18 hours a day.
“My first utility bill was $90. My electricity bill at my old house with the same square footage was $300-325.”
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“My first utility bill was $90. My electricity bill at my old house with the same square footage was $300-325 … I haven't had to run the air conditioner since I got here, It's been 90-95 outside and 78 inside. We love the fresh air system; you don't get the stuffy stale smells you get in some homes.”