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Top Green Building Products for 2016 – Part I: Highlights From BuildingGreen’s Annual List

BuildingGreen, an independent publishing company, committed to bringing members accurate, unbiased and timely green design information has released its list of top transformative products for the New Year.

The innovative makers of these products are doing their part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and carbon footprints, while saving energy and water, and offering long-lasting, safe solutions.

Here are a few that made the list:

Honeywell Solstice Liquid Blowing Agent: A low GWP Foam Blowing Agent With All the Benefits of HFCs

Traditional spray polyurethane foam (SPF) offers solid insulating and air sealing properties, but has an adverse effect on the environment. According to BuildingGreen: “Solstice Liquid Blowing Agent (LBA) is the latest advance in foam blowing technology developed by Honeywell. With a global warming potential (GWP) of 1, the product’s impact on the environment is much lower than current HFCs used in the industry.Solstice LBA is a suitable replacement for other liquid foam blowing agents and also offers significant performance benefits over foams made with HFC-245fa, including greater foam yield, improved compressive strength and up to a 10% increase in thermal performance. Stay warm and reduce global warming with Solstice LBA!

Honeywell Solstice Liquid Blowing Agent

(Photo: West Development Group)

nuLEDS Power-over-Ethernet (PoE): The Plug-and-Play Solution for LEDs

Most high-efficiency LED lighting systems use standard high-voltage wiring that is expensive to install and modify because the alternating current (AC) power has to be converted to direct current (DC) power. Flickering lights and performance problems are often the result. nuLEDS Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) LED lighting system uses DC Cat 5 or Cat 6 Ethernet cables — the same ones that connect your laptop — to carry both power and data to LED systems. The system allows up to 60 watts for lighting and data, carried over low-voltage cable that creates a “plug-and-play” system that is safe, simple and inexpensive.

nuLEDS Power-over-Ethernet

(Photo: nuLED)

Unity Homes High-Performance Panelized Homes: Fossil-fuel Free Homebuilding

Tedd Benson, founder of Unity Homes started the New Hampshire-based homebuilder to raise the bar from current industry standards.

“There’s a serious defect rate in American homes today — anywhere from 15 to 80 percent,” says Benson. “In any other industry if you had a defect rate of any more than 1 percent, you’d be out of business.”

Using renewable resources, such as wood and cellulose and low to no-VOC materials and finishes, Unity’s Zūm modelassembled on-site at Greenbuild in just three days, is a prime example of how a green home can be efficient, affordable and stylish. The process starts with sophisticated CAD-CAM production modeling to help create panelized wall systems and pods (small prefabricated modules used for bathrooms, mechanical rooms and kitchens). The walls are insulated with cellulose to R-35 and roofs are insulated to R-38 to R-44.

Unity's Zum model home at night

(Photo: Unity Homes)

Sanden SanCo2 Heat Pump Water Heater: The First Eco-friendly CO2 Hot Water Solution

Most industry standard heat pumps use hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants such as R410a, which has a 100-year GWP. Sanden now offers a residential heat pump water heater that uses CO2 as the refrigerant and is capable of delivering enough hot water for domestic hot water use and even hyronic heating in more modern homes.The SanCO2 system consists of two parts: the outdoor unit, where hot water is produced using the CO2 refrigerant to extract heat from ambient air, and the 60- to 80-gallon storage tank, which is installed inside the home. The closed-loop system uses less energy and allows for faster heat recovery, resulting in lower operating costs than traditional electric tank heaters or typical heat pumps. Hot water, naturally with Sanden!

Sanden SANCo2

(Photo: Sanden)

Telsa Powerwall and Powerpack: Energy Storage for a Sustainable Home

The majority of grid-tied PV systems can only store power for daily use, lacking backup power capacity. Storing this electricity helps minimize utility power and ensures the system functions in an outage. Telsa’s Powerwall and Powerback home battery systems charge using electricity generated from solar panels. Telsa’s Powerwall allows the home to run on solar energy through the night. Automated, compact and simple to install, Telsa’s Powerwall can help homeowners achieve net-zero energy and allow homes to function almost entirely off-the-grid.

Telsa Powerwall and Powerpack

(Photo: Telsa)

A big thanks to BuildingGreen for the info on this first round of products.

But, wait — there’s more…

Look for the upcoming list: Top Green Products – Part II, to learn more about products/manufacturers that are stealing the show in 2016.

Testimonials

Thank you all your efforts in putting together such a great article about our company in US Builders Review. DH Construction appreciates the professional manner in which your team worked with us to achieve the stateside exposure we were after; especially taking the time to get all of the facts correct. In short, the article was extremely well put together and we have already received a great deal of feedback, interest, and compliments as a result of the piece. Once again, we appreciate all the effort, and without a doubt, we will not hesitate to work with your organization again in the future.
— Daniel Harrigan, Principal, DH Construction
Kyle Gahm was instrumental in coordinating this project from beginning to end. He was always available and a pleasure to work with. It would be a pleasure to work with Kyle down the road. Bill Keaton was very impressive in raising money from advertising which resulted in ASE getting the cover story, so thank you Bill. Lia Prysunka and Jeanee Dudley are both very impressive individuals who deserve a lot of credit for this featured piece. They were both very patient and accepting of any changes we suggested. The format, quality, and resolution was awesome. To sum it all up: Our upper management, who never have been high on PR and things of this nature said that it was "absolutely fantastic" and were blown away. They now are requesting multiple copies of the full magazine and are very proud of the work you all put in. Thanks again.
— Ryan Sanzari, Director of Operations, Alfred Sanzari Enterprises
I was contacted as a nominee for the Greenbuild Editor’s Choice 2016 recognition and I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. Working with US Builders Review has been a blessing for my company. Erica Berry took an awesome interview in the initial call as she gathered data for the article. She was concerned about how we became us, and she made me feel important by listening and taking notes. Then there is Ian Nichols who made me feel so comfortable in sharing my story, and Molly Shaw who interviewed me as well, as she was getting ready to create an awesome article about my company -- and I must say she nailed it on the first run! What a pleasure it has been to work with everyone. This feature on Container Homes USA will help me push the company into the forefront at the Greenbuild Expo 2016.
— Derrick C. W. Childs, Director Construction & Design, Container Homes USA
Everyone that we worked with was polite, professional, responsive & very good to work with. It was amazing to see the ideas transformed into the final product. We are very happy with the end results and would not hesitate to work with them in the future or recommend them to other business!
— James Kowalski, Owner, Kowalski Construction Inc.
I’m blown away with the value that could come out of our partnership through this article. Working with the US Builders Review team is something that I have never experienced before and every day I feel even more privileged to be with EJH Construction, I never take for granted the opportunities that have come my way.  I am so excited about what our future looks like based on the relationship that has been built with the US Builders Review team.
Jennifer Wilhelmsen – Director of Human Resources, EJH Construction Inc.
On behalf of Alfred Sanzari Enterprises, I would like to thank you for showcasing our company as a cover story in US Builders Review, and express our gratitude for a job well done in putting together an impressive editorial product. We already have received a great deal of positive feedback on the article and are confident it will be a very effective tool for sharing Alfred Sanzari Enterprises’ story, and our new hotel project, with a national audience of industry professionals. Please also extend our thanks to everyone on your team that helped in any way to produce this article. This was truly a collaborative effort.  Your staff listened to our feedback and was incredibly professional and accommodating to our requests throughout the entire process. We welcome the opportunity to collaborate with US Builders Review on future projects.
— Ryan Sanzari, Director of Operations, Alfred Sanzari Enterprises
What a great team US Builders has put in place! Having worked with Victor Martins a few years back, I was pleasantly surprised that he remembered our experience and contacted us again about an updated article. Not only did Victor brainstorm with me about content that would resonate with readers, but he assigned an excellent writer, Molly Shaw, to our account. Her interview with my client, Bardi Heating Cooling & Plumbing, was professional and succinct; as was her writing style. We had very few edits and were pleased not only with the article, but how well it was enhanced by color photos. Much appreciated!
— Karen Bird, Owner of Strategic Marketing Services, Bardi Heating Cooling & Plumbing
Professional with attention to customer’s needs. Well prepared vision for article while open to suggestions. Provided plenty feedback and review prior to final draft. Thanks in advance for the assistance and promotion of our organization!
— Jason Lee, LEED AP O+M, Director of Sustainability and Optimization for Harvard Maintenance
The final product was an exceptionally well written and thorough story integrated with many of our project photos. It is a great endorsement of our company and our work that we are promoting on our website and through social media. We were impressed with the quality of the editorial and the professional follow-through.
— Susan Howell, Marketing Director for Howell Custom Building Group
My experience with US Builders Review was positive from start to finish. The staff conducted each interaction with the utmost professionalism, whether over the phone or by email. Beginning with the initial telephone interview US Builders Review carefully gathered information to form a draft document then incorporated my minimal edits required to achieve factual accuracy in the finished article. US Builders Review is a pleasure to work with.
— Tim Craddock, President, Vansant & Gusler Inc.

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