Effect Of Occupant Behavior on Peak Cooling And Dehumidification Loads In Typical And High-Efficiency Homes

Jonathan Winkler, Jeffrey Munk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus Citations

Abstract

Residential building codes and voluntary labeling programs are continually increasing the energy efficiency requirements of residential buildings. Improving a building's thermal enclosure, installing the ductwork in conditioned space, and improving the building's airtightness results in significant reductions in externally-driven sensible and latent cooling loads. As a building's efficiency is improved, occupant-related internal gains become a larger portion of the building sensible and latent loads. Additionally, internal gains are highly uncertain compared to other load components. In this study, we use a stochastic approach to simulate occupant-related internal gains and compare the internal gains to other sensible and latent heat sources in four house efficiency levels in 10 U.S. climates using whole-building energy simulation software. We compare the expected range in occupant-related internal gains to other building characteristics such as cooling set point, air infiltration rate, and mechanical ventilation rate. We show that in high-efficiency homes, sensible internal gains vary from less than 10% to greater than 40% of the building sensible load under peak total cooling conditions depending on climate and internal gain profile. Likewise, latent internal gains vary from less than 10% to more than 60% of the building latent load under peak total cooling and peak dehumidification conditions depending on climate and internal gain profile.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)122-140
Number of pages19
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Volume184
DOIs
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier B.V.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5500-71335

Keywords

  • Building energy modeling
  • Cooling loads
  • Effective moisture penetration depth
  • Humidity
  • Indoor humidity
  • Low-load
  • Moisture
  • Moisture buffering
  • Residential

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Effect Of Occupant Behavior on Peak Cooling And Dehumidification Loads In Typical And High-Efficiency Homes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this