Energy Efficiency and Innovation

As one of the NAHB’s official show homes, The New American Remodel® (TNAR) 2022 is a symbol of energy efficiency and innovation. The home exhibits cutting-edge products from manufacturers all over the world. TNAR 2022 has achieved the requirements for certification to the Emerald level of the National Green Building Standard™. Its energy-efficient features can be used in homes in a hot climate at any price point with similar energy savings. The home is also EPA ENERGY STAR® certified and has achieved the Indoor airPLUS and the DOE Zero Energy Ready Home certifications.

Two Trails, Inc. worked closely with Designer Trade Services to ensure energy efficiency and innovation in TNAR 2022. Pre-remodel, the home has a HERS Index of 115, which is 15% less-efficient than the average new code-built home. After the remodel, The New American Remodel 2022 was projected to achieve a HERS Index of -22. However the final HERS rating is -28, which makes this remodel the second-most efficient home in program history! The home incorporated 12.8 KW of high-efficient Solaria 400-watt solar panels to power its electrical systems, which is projected to provide 100% of the annual electric energy needs for the home! 


Water Efficiency Features

In addition to energy savings, this home is designed to achieve approximately a 52% reduction in water use from pre-remodel levels.  This remarkable water use reduction is made possible using low-flow water fixtures and a high-efficient irrigation system. Water saving features include:

  •     Kohler low-flow, EPA WaterSense certified 1.2 GPM lavatory faucets and 1.28 GPF toilets 
  •     Natural, indigenous landscaping, with a minimum of turf grass reduces landscaping watering requirements
  •     High-efficient micro spray, driplines and irrigation controller contributed to the outdoor water use reduction

Indoor Environmental Quality Features

Indoor Environmental Quality encompasses the conditions inside a home, and their effects on residents. The New American Remodeled Home 2022 incorporated innovative strategies, creating an indoor environmental quality that enhance the lives of homeowners, protects occupants’ health, and improves quality of life. Indoor Environmental Quality strategies include:

  •     Low-VOC paints and finishes and low-VOC interior adhesives and sealants
  •     MERV 13 space conditioning air filters
  •     HVAC ducts sealed during construction to prevent pollutants from construction activities from entering the system
  •     Santa Fe Whole House Ventilating Dehumidifiers configured to allow the correct amount of fresh air, plus provide dedicated humidity control throughout the entire home.
  •     Eco-Friendly cabinets – Formaldehyde free and material certified by the Forest Stewardship Council
  •     Eco-Friendly flooring – Carpet and Rug Institute’s Green Label certified flooring products

Thermal Shell


  •     Unvented and air sealed attic with Huntsman Building Solutions open-cell polyurethane spray-foam insulation (R-21).
  •     High-efficient Jeld-Wen Windows and Sliding Glass doors with low-e coating and U-Values of 0.3 and SHGC of 0.2 to limit solar heat gain and optimize air tightness
  •     Exterior CMU walls insulated using injected core-fill foam insulation and Fi-Foil reflective wall insulation (R-12.1).
  •     AeroSeal’s AeroBarrier aerosol thermal envelope sealer utilized to further reduce envelope leakage
  •     Large overhangs to aid in protecting the home from the harsh Florida sun
  •     Light colored exterior to assist in reflecting the sun


HVAC Equipment and Innovation


  •     Mitsubishi’s Electric's Horizontal-Ducted Heat Pump system provides space conditioning
  •     Multiple Air Handling Units provide individual room climate control
  •     Spot ventilation provided by Broan-NuTone
  •     Whole House Ventilating & Dehumidification by Santa Fe Dehumidifiers. 
  •     Space conditioning system located entirely within the conditioned space


Water Heaters


  •     Bosch ENERGY STAR®-rated tankless water heaters with insulated hot water lines utilized throughout the project to reduce heat loss and increase efficiency.

Electrical Equipment and Innovation


  •     100% energy-efficient LED lighting for all interior and exterior lighting 
  •     Bosch and Thermador ENERGY STAR®-rated appliances
  •     ENERGY STAR®-rated variable speed pool pumps


Solar Array


  •     32 Solaria 400-watt solar panels with a 12 kW Sol-Arc Inverter and battery backup system.


Systems Engineering Approach


The systems-engineering approach unites segments of the building industry that have previously worked independently of one another.  The concept is simple: systems-engineering can make America’s homes cost effective to build or retrofit and energy efficient to live in. Energy consumption of new houses can be reduced by as much as 40% with little or no impact on the cost of construction. Similar performance can be achieved in existing homes. 

To reach this goal, the Designer Trade Services team are working with their building partners to produce a home that incorporates energy and material saving strategies from design through construction. First, the team analyzed and selected cost-effective strategies for improving home performance. Next, the team evaluated design, business, and construction practices within individual partnerships to identify cost savings.  Cost savings could then be reinvested to improve energy performance and product quality. For example, a design that incorporates new techniques for tightening the building envelope, allows Designer Trade Services to install smaller, less expensive heating and cooling systems. 

The “pilot” or “test” home is the field application of solution design. The team assisted Designer Trade Services in designing TNAR 2022 in accordance to strategic design, modeling to maximize building efficiency of each system, and directed the team to increase efficiency through cost effective decisions. Before additional houses are built, these changes are incorporated into the design. This process of analysis, field implementation, reanalysis, and design alteration facilitate ultimate home performance once a design or retrofit strategy is ready for use in production or community-scale housing.