Developer John Love envisioned a neighborhood of energy-efficient, high-performance homes. In December 2018, his dream become a reality with the six residences on Cloverleaf Court.
“We wanted to take this project and use it as a model for what truly matters in a high-performance home: what’s behind the walls, the kind of heating system, the energy-efficiency and the long-term durability,” said Brady Barkdull, builder and owner of Wydaho Construction.
Selecting Zoned Comfort Solutions®
To bring the project to life, Barkdull teamed up with architects Lindsey Love and Lindsay Schack, owners of Love Schack Architecture and Jeff Deutschendorf, the project’s HVAC installer/contractor and owner of Fox Creek Heating LLC. Sharing common goals of efficiency, comfort and performance, the team set out to complete the development. To fulfill these goals, the project team required an HVAC system that was efficient, but could also handle Victor, Idaho’s cold temperatures and heavy snowfall. The solution: Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating Zoned Comfort Solutions. “If you’re going to have an energy-efficient home, the Mitsubishi Electric product is really the only way to go,” noted Deutschendorf.
“Being in a cold climate, it’s a little challenging to use high-performance mini-splits. There weren’t a lot of HVAC contractors who were willing to get certified on the systems,” said Lindsey Love. “Once we found out that Fox Creek Heating was willing to do that for this project and to use Mitsubishi Electric and we compared the costs, that was the lynchpin that made us choose this system.”
The Difference in Efficiency and Comfort
The Cloverleaf Court homes utilize SUZ model outdoor units which offer an 18,000 BTU/h maximum rated capacity and are equipped with an INVERTER-driven compressor to restrict energy use to the precise amount needed to condition a zone. While conventional systems with fixed-speed compressors use the same amount of energy regardless of the load, the SUZ units (applied with SVZ multi-position air handlers) vary capacity to meet part-load conditions. The INVERTER technology, along with high-performance grooved piping to increase the heat-exchange area, delivers cost-savings for homeowners even in cold climates.
For auxiliary heat, Fox Creek Heating applied an 8kW heat strip to the homes’ SVZ air handlers and set up kumo cloud® for homeowners, an app that allows a user to manage their home’s HVAC system from a mobile device.
The team’s thorough system selection paid off. An energy audit determined that a Cloverleaf Court homeowner could expect to pay about $1,100 per year in power bills. That number includes a monthly $35 line and systems maintenance fee set by the utility company. Without that fee, the homeowner would pay approximately $680 per year, or less than $60 per month, for power used. That cost would drop even more if the homeowner opted to install solar panels.
To read the full Case Study, visit MitsubishiPro.com.