Building Innovation for Homeownership
Award Winners: Alabama
PROJECT: Green Valley Estates, Fort Payne Alabama
SUBMITTER: Warren Builders, Albertville Alabama
PROJECT DESCRIPTION: Green Valley Estates in Fort Payne, Alabama, is a development
20 completed homes and 17 lots available for construction. The homes feature energy efficient
construction typically found in construction only in northern states. The 1,200 square-foot three
-bedroom homes sell for between $60,000 and $70,000.
Green Valley Estate homes have wet-blown cellulose insulation to achieve R-14 walls and an R-
45 ceiling. Extensive caulking and air sealing, verified by blower door testing, further decrease
the heat from entering or exiting the home. OVE engineering, used to reduce the quantity of
framing materials, also reduces energy loss.
The homes are heated and cooled with a geothermal heat pump which moves heat between the
ground and the home at efficiencies greater than conventional air-source heat pumps. A
"desuperheater" extracts heat from the refrigerant of the heat pump and supplies half of the
domestic hot water. This method decreases the use of costlier electric resistance water heating
and further improves the efficiency of the heat pump. Hot water pipes running below the
ground slab are fully insulated. Air distribution ducts are entirely located in conditioned space,
providing both increased energy efficiency and comfort to the occupants. Monitoring of monthly
heating and cooling costs documents an average monthly heating/cooling expenditure of $20.
PROJECT PARTICIPANTS: Warren Builders (builder)
Content Archived: January 20, 2009