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Green energy choices

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by Sundeep Arole, Apr 23, 2006.

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  1. Sundeep Arole

    Sundeep Arole New Member

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    So this year we were fortunate enough to expect unexpectedly fat checks back from the feds and the state. My wife and I have decided that the smartest thing to do with the cash (around $3K) is to invest in green energy improvements. We sat down the other night and came up with a list. We have already put down all the insulation possible in the attic, so that isn't in the list. So here is the list, with major considerations in parenthesis:

    - Solar panels for DHW, problem is house doesn't face south.
    - Replace uninsulated curtains with cellular shades
    - Whole house fan and more attic ventilation
    - Down payment on hybrid (a big albatross of a loan on our heads for the next few years)
    - Two wheeler scooter to use instead of car for small errands (useless in winter).
    - Skylight (or tube skylight) in hallway where it often gets dark and we turn on lights unnecessarily
    - Get a solar cooker and use it instead of grill
    - Add a south facing family room and put the solar panels on that, and room for a dhw tank which
    will do away with the tankless coil altogether (another albatross of a loan on our heads probably for as long as we own the house.)

    Any opinions from others on which might provide a good bang for the buck? I have a 1200sf ranch house on a slab, radiant under slab heat via oil boiler, tankless dhw coil, and a Lopi Answer woodburning insert (which easily keeps the house at 70+ by itself even on cold days.) House faces east-west.

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  2. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    For solar HW, perhaps one side of your roof faces south? Our main roof ridge runs north-south, facing east/west, but the hip on our roof is plenty for southern exposure. Alternatively, you can go with a smaller evacuated collector and angle mount it - in the northwest, people even hang them off whichever wall faces south. As I've mentioned in other threads, the awesome new tax rebates help this - esp. if you double up with a state rebate as well. I'm going to pursue this shortly - the return on investment you get here would likely finance another one of these smaller projects every year into the future! And the environmental benefit is a no brainer for this one.

    Also like the whole house fan idea.

    I personally think hybrids are overrated in their current form with very marginal benefit (and dubious economics compared to diesels and other high-mileage conventional vehicles) but would love to see a plug-in hybrid that can take me 20-30 miles before turning on the engine. Do that and sign up for green energy delivery to your house and you're really making a meaningful impact - avoid that high-polluting first couple minutes of operating your engine for many short trips and improve the economic viability of large scale economically efficient green power projects. And the net cost to you is still way less than your internal combustion engine. Until then I think some of your other ideas make a lot more sense.

    Not sure if you like compact fluorescents, but that is a good one for payback... we use them mainly on outdoor porch lights.

    -Colin
  3. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    I'm not an expert on solar, but If you live in the North, solar power isn't the greatest investment. At least the way I see it. Too many cloudy, short daylight days. I installed a solar generator with a few panels, batteries and a ac inverter. I run 4 lights off it. Plenty of juice in the batteries in the spring and summer, but not much in the fall and winter months.

    I like your ideas about the hybrid and scooter. I'm thinking the same thing.
  4. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    I thought the same thing too initially. However, for electric panels, you actually lose some conversion efficiency in the hotter southern temperatures - they function better at lower temperatures, all other things being equal. And remember you get longer days in the summer up north, so for offseting peak electric loads for A/C use in the summer, it can make a lot of sense. But you do need really good sun to make electric work - much of the US is not practical for this.

    On the other hand, some solar hot water collectors are designed to manage this by using evacuated tubes that let radiation in to heat, but no thermal conduction out. Quite a bit more cost effective than solar electric conversion - people use them successfully even in the pacific northwest - about as bad as you can get for low sun! Just might take another year or two to pay off the difference - will pay off far better than the current hybrid car choices in either case.

    -Colin
  5. Turner-n-Burner

    Turner-n-Burner New Member

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    "- Get a solar cooker and use it instead of grill "

    You burn wood for heat, and you're worried about the enviromental impact of COOKING? Does that come before or after you decide to eliminate beer, chili and apricots from your diet? <insert bemused smiley>


    I didn't see you mention replacement windows, blown in wall insulation, daylight corrected flourescant bulbs...

    Or you could really invest in alternative energies. Add some uranium or ethanol stocks to your investment portfolio.

    Can you explain "cellular shades" ? I've never heard that term, and I'm in the market for some window treatments...


    -Dan
  6. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    The whole huse fan is a good idea, only if you have enough gable end vents and ridge vents in the attic. It does two things well.
    It eliminates the heat sink in the attic and by opening and closing windows in the home, you can get a definite breeze drawn in.
    It is a lot cheaper to run a fan instead of a compressor for AC.

    What about a motorized damper for your new furnace?
  7. Sundeep Arole

    Sundeep Arole New Member

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    Yes, there are some obvious things not on my list. Energy efficient windows - already done. Wall insulation - not really possible to ad any more
    without a major remodel.. Compact Florescents - already done. So I'm already a good way up the rope.

    Cellular shades are shades basically blinds with a honeycomb like structure which traps air inside it. They can be semi-transparent or opaque. They provide a R value, while still allowing enough air circulation around the window so condensation doesn't become a major problem.

    As far as the solar cooker, we pretty much eat at home, eat out no more than once a week, if that. Cooking is a big energy expense for us, last months electric bill averaged 12 KWh/day, and about 5 kWh/day was the stove, 3 kWh/day for the fridge, 1 kWh/day each for the washer and dishwasher, and the rest miscellaneous (lighting, etc.)

    The solar cooker would allow a long cooking stew to be set out in the morning, and be ready by the afternoon. It has also been touted as a healthier way to cook, though those claims are a bit dubious. I would guess it would knock off 2 kWh/day off of the electric bill. Given the cost of electric, it would not pay for itself in a short time, but it would add one more step towards energy independence and self sufficiency. It doesn't cost that much, and I could get one of those as a alternative to what I usually do - write a check to the Sierra Club and feel good about being for the environment, whilst doing little or nothing myself to make a difference.
  8. Sundeep Arole

    Sundeep Arole New Member

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    That is a good idea, the motorized damper. I'll have to look into how much one of those cost.
  9. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I also agree, whole house fans work.

    As to hybrids, there are a lot of variations from good to worthlless. Some go hybrid to just add power (ie: Accord, Lexus) and they are not selling well. Colin, it sounds like you are quoting dubious resources. Edmunds and CNN have been saying the same thing, but they're quoting April Consumer Reports. If you go onto CR's website, you'll see that they've retracted the stats posted for the Toyota Prius. Turns out they made a serious math error and didn't catch it.

    Anywho, if you want to know about the Prius, ask the man that owns one. Feel free to message me and I'll fill you in on the real world economics of it. We have two other cars, a Honda and a Ranger pickup. Both get great mileage, but the Prius is getting double under the same circumstances. The Prius is often compared to a Corolla or a Jetta TDI. That isn't really a good comparison. The Prius is bigger on the inside than an Accord and about the interior volume of a Camry. I'm not trying to sell you on the car, it's a big decision, but you should have the correct facts necessary to make the decision first.
  10. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    Yea, I've read the report - I'd recommend it to anyone looking at this option because even after corrections, it's not a strong case:

    http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/...of-hybrid-vehicles-406/hybrids-vs-all-gas.htm

    It's a pretty hard sell when you go through their assumptions - if gas goes to $4/gallon as they assume, then you save $406. At the prices in the past couple of years, you don't save money.

    CR also failed to account for time value of money in this calculation - the bigger up front expenditure for a hybrid means you leave less money invested earning money elsewhere. (you only recoup on the gas slowly over a period of years - meanwhile the owner of a non-hybrid has extra money sitting in the bank) They also compared it to a car that has a higher HP engine with more torque - granted, closest available, but not quite fair to the non-hybrid since there isn't a gas engine with such low performance.

    I've actually driven a Prius rental - really neat and flashy console but very very slow. Also, I work with a guy who commutes one of these on the highway - he gets very little advantage over his previous civic. I have a 25 mile commute, but it's all highway mileage in cruise control so despite spending a lot on gas, a hybrid won't save me a dime. You have to have very specific urban stop-and-go driving habits, assume gas will continue to skyrocket, and neglect the time value of money to make the case - that's why I say it's a bit dubious compared to other no-brainer green energy investments. Great idea for some people - not so great for a lot who talk about it as a panacea. That's why I was pleased to see people modifying a Prius with extended runtime battery packs so you can start running errands in pure electric mode - that could really change things.

    I'd like to see CR also run the comparison against some of the VW TDIs - and if we get some of the European common rail technology, then that will really get me interested. Best car I ever drove was a BMW 320d that got about 45 MPG driving on the autobahn at average speeds of 90-100 MPH between Dresden and Berlin with some sprints up to 120 here and there. What a blast - great handling, mind-blowing torque - if only you could buy one here...

    -Colin
  11. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Well I'm an admitted early adopter, but it hasn't been a big compromise. I'm surprised about the comment on acceleration. I've never heard that for the 2nd gen Prius. The 78 hp gas engine is supplemented by 67hp electric, =145hp and due to it's lighter weight, is very quick off the line. We're pretty happy with 9.3 sec. 0-60 mph. The electric motor torque comes on instantly. It easily beats our other cars flat out. Anything more would be a waste that should be applied towards fuel efficiency. Perhaps your rental was an older unit or ailing? What car are you comparing it to?

    The bottom line debate doesn't really hold water unless one is looking for the cheapest deal out there. No one talks about how quickly a BMW amortizes vs a Camry. It's a silly argument. We weren't looking for the cheapest car we could find. We got the car because it has one of the lowest carbon footprints available, is really spacious, fun to drive, great resale value and much more reliable than the VW TDI. Look at the repair history for recent VW's. They can really nickel and dollar one to death. Plus, the Prius is a technological wonder. It really is an amazing car. Unfortunately, our diesel fuel is too dirty for European common-rail diesels, so it looks like they won't happen here soon. And they don't pass NY or CA emissions standards. I can't follow the logic with your commute example. What does cruise control have to do with it? This is where some hybrids really shine, they like total computer control. What would influence mileage more is the terrain, temperature and speed.

    RE: the CR report. They state: "Our revised data show that if buyers are able to take advantage of limited federal tax credits, two hybrids--the Toyota Prius and the Honda Civic Hybrid--are projected to cost about $400 and $300 less, respectively." Other errata: They show 44mpg, which is my winter gas mileage. Summer mileage in our area is averaging over 50. CR shows insurance higher which is odd, mine dropped quite a bit. Look in your paper at the price of a 2 yr. old Corolla vs a 2 yr old Prius with the same mileage. I know we did, we were considering used. The Prius holds it's value much better. But the huge error is comparing it to a Corolla. Cmon now, the Prius is a mid-size car, the Corolla is not. A comaprison to the Camry or Accord would be more appropriate. I take CR reports now with a healthy grain of salt. They've made some really bad calls before and this is one of them.

    You're right though, there will be ever better versions of hybrids, and we'll likely trade up when the lithium-ion version comes out. I'm looking forward to when the plugin hybrid technology takes hold. Our electricity is mostly hydro and the range fits within the majority of our driving habits. One last reason for buying the car was that it gives our kids hope. We're willing to make a change for their future. I was totally unprepared for the reception this car gets at the high school. These kids are looking for hope for the future, their future. The Prius isn't perfect, no car is, but it's a good step in the right direction.

    Anyhow, sorry, no desire here to hijack HotFlame's thread. PM me if you have more questions.
  12. Sandor

    Sandor Minister of Fire

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    I installed a solar attic fan on my last house, and it works like a champ.

    I also put in a Solatube light in the interior full bath, 10 inch. That thing was amazing and provides usuable light even on cloudy days.

    The whole fan installed several houses ago was not worth it, IMO. Dylans idea above is just as good, and much less expensive - and won't leak air into the attic in the winter time. A small high effiency window shaker works great and may not use much more electric than that big whole house fan.

    Would like to go with solar hw this year, and still reading and thinking. Its the best bang for the buck as far as solar goes.

    Just bought a Sportster for the commute. 55MGP. Not scooter mileage, but better than most cars.
  13. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    In a nothern climate New England It usually cools enough at night that the whole houes gfan is quite effective. This may not be so in VA. The 10" sky lite tubes are a nice way to go they can be installed inbetween framing menbers without cutting them out.

    I have another milage solution a 1995 GEO Metro gets 45 mpgs Dosen't require a lot of money to buy Insurance, and
    excise tax is cheap. Mine has 80,000 miles on it and recently went to Chicago and back. As gas prices assends this car value is rising
    0 to 60 sucks but if patient it will get you there. Not to be mistaken as a BMW or Corvette

    Hot flame with all the home improvements going on there what about swapping one of your 4 cly cars for an equal milage used 4cyl
    Pk truck. Plus you can join the wood scrounging group. You can use it for your every day commute and give up nothing for gas milage
  14. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    The Prius real net power is only 110 HP when you overlap the power bands. Edmunds puts the 0-60 at 10.4 secs. I test drove one of the second gen ones - Hertz was giving them out as rentals in NY at one point. Stats on Edmunds website for both; HP figures at Toyotas as well. Point is any smaller slower vehicle will have significant advantages, as Elk pointed out.

    Hybrids save energy by recovering some fraction of your braking energy and letting you get away with a slightly weaker engine due to better low end power. The braking part of that efficiency equation is fairly useless on long highway driving where people spend a lot on fuel. (then you should go with an insight - just go as small and light as possible) But if you commute in stop and go traffic, then it makes a little more sense. A lot of people get better local mileage than highway with these vehicles due to this phenomenon. Those mileage numbers are key and in cruise control, any small car with a small engine will do well - I think that is the real key. Heck, I regularly topped 40 MPG highway in my old honda CRX - 40+ MPG is not that hard to achieve. BTW, the MPG for a Corolla is also way higher than 29 MPG too... CR drives their cars hard to get such low numbers across the board.

    Once you are prepared to give up HP, performance and size, there are a ton of choices that are very "green" with better economics for long highway commuters who are some of the heaviest fuel users. Look at the Echo, Geo, TDIs, etc... Things like the V6 that drops to 3 cylinders at highway is another great idea - much simpler, cheaper, and it helps the people who are arguably spending the most money on gas given longer distances.

    I think the real reason people buy hybrids more than anything is to make a green fashion statement, and that's nice. (kind of like us freaks who tell all our friends at work how they should be hauling and burning wood all winter... the only way we can make the case that wood "saves money") :) Honestly, the other part is just people trying to rationalize it - why bother? Just leave it at you're OK spending more on the car to encourage the technology - eventually it may come down in price, or lead into true electric hybrids and that is a great end goal.

    I just wouldn't recommend spending a tax refund on it if they're looking to save a ton of money because that won't happen until gas is much more expensive and they are doing a lot of mixed driving.

    -Colin
  15. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    Ditto - I do the same. I'd love to find a quieter whole house fan but I hear that most are really noisy?

    Panasonic makes outstanding bath/vent fans - super quiet and incredibly low power use due to highly efficient motor design. Would be interesting to see if they have any really big models that might actually generate a meaningful draft for cool nights and do so quietly/efficiently.

    -Colin
  16. CrazyAboutOrchids

    CrazyAboutOrchids New Member

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    Hot Flame,

    We installed 4 tubular skylights in our home 2 years ago. GREAT things they are!!! I ordered mine from this company http://www.skylightguys.com/index.asp which had much better prices than buying the Solatube brand locally. Had them installed when we replaced our roof. My home used to have a very dark hallway and upstairs bathroom as well as front entranceway. We installed a 13" in the hallway right above the stairs going up to the 2nd floor which gives us much needed ligh in our front entranceway. Their are 2 additional 10" tubes in the hallway that have the optional light kits installed with energy efficient bulbs in them. This way we have one fixture that serves 2 purposed; natural, no cost light when available as well as electrical for night. We had one additonal tube installed in the darkest upstairs bath without light kit. I love them so much, I really wish we had done more. If I could do it over, I would have installed one in the master bath as well as out closet. They cost me 150.00 to install and went in quickly and easily. 2 years later, no problems with them at all.

    On a day like today where it is raining, very dark outside, my upstairs hallway and front entranceway used to be a black whole. The lights were used constantly and the kids always left them on. Now, with the tubular skylights, it's the same light in my home as it is outside. I can walk upstairs without flicking the lightswitch almost all the time. The hallway even gets lit by moonlight depending on the cycle of the moon.

    As far as a whole house fan, I have one and just don't care for it. I think it leaks more air into my attic than anything else. We have it covered with that clear plastic that you use on windows in the winter. What is much more effective in my 2 story home in CT is the ceiling fans we installed in the upstairs bedrooms. We run them on low pretty much all the time once it gets warm. I have central A/C but only use it when it gets terribly hot and humid. I find the ceiling fans do enough to keep the house comfortable (for us). They made a huge difference in how often we look to the A/C for cooling since we installed them.
  17. carpniels

    carpniels Minister of Fire

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    Hi Guys,

    It looks like most of the easy fixes to be more green have already been done. Now you are getting into the field of the more expenses and lower returns.

    My local AAA director gave a presentation on hybrid vs. gas and he said that it makes little sense right now to pay the extra cash for the hybrid. He says the next big thing are the common rail diesels from Europe, once the USA start making the low sulfur diesel (2007). Mercedes will start with importing 5 models in diesels in 2007. No 50 state cars yet, only 45. I actually have a printout of the 2006 Toyota Avensis wagon 2.2 D-4D automatic above my desk. average 47 mpg, 149 HP, 0-60 in 9 sec. My dream car.

    I would buy the cellular shades. I bought one for my sons room (north side, far away from the stove). It insulates so well that the window behind it will have frost on it, and his room will be notable warmer. Best surprise of this winter. It was the cheapest one at Lowes and cost $80 for 6 ft wide (and that is a really good deal). Make sure they are wide enough to cover the entire window and sill.

    A scooter is a nice solution, but they are 2 stroke and pollute more than a whole bunch of 4 stoke cars with catalytic converters. So you might save gas, but hurt the environment.

    Good Luck

    Niels
  18. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Panasonic makes outstanding bath/vent fans - super quiet and incredibly low power use due to highly efficient motor design. Would be interesting to see if they have any really big models that might actually generate a meaningful draft for cool nights and do so quietly/efficiently.
    We have the Panasonic bath fans. Good fans, they are quieter, but not super quiet, I wouldn't recommend them for whole house ventilation. A whole house fan depends on the house design, but they can make a nice difference. Grew up in NY state, no A/C and the evening breeze created by the fan was very welcome. My Dad got a big 30"? one with a multi-speed motor and set it to low speed. Opened the windows on the east and north side of the house. All one heard in the house (upstairs) was a low hum through the ceiling grille. In the winter we dropped an insulated cover over the ceiling grille, leakage didn't seem to be a problem.
  19. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Dude, are you this opinionated about selling soapstone stoves too? Cast iron may be different, but it's not inferior. Different strokes for different folks, ya know.

    "The Prius real net power is only 110 HP when you overlap the power bands. edmunds got 10. 0-60, etc." Yes and Motor Trend got 9.8 sec 0-60. This is splitting hairs. What is different is the elec motor puts out 295 ft.lbs torque. It comes on very quickly. That's why pure electric cars can smoke a Vette off the line. (http://www.acpropulsion.com/tzero_pages/tzero_home.htm). Granted, if one is used to 200 hp under foot, it is not the same, but I've long since lost the need to impress friends or prove my masculinity at traffic lights. Under good conditions, our Honda will get 30 mpg and I've had my Ranger up to 32mpg. The Prius is averaging 45 in cool weather with a ton of short trips, hills and all the stuff that makes for bad gas mileage. In a stretch, you can compare it to Civic though that's a smaller car, but not the CRX, which is a two seater. But the Civics I've owned get about 30mpg under the same conditions and our Honda (4cyl) Odyssey gets about 22mpg. Same for our old Subaru Legacy. So as stated, we're seeing a doubling of mileage under the identical conditions of our other 4 cyl. vehicles.

    "Look at the Echo, Geo, TDIs, etc..." Why would one look at smaller cars if one is not in the market for that size car? My long legged boys prefer the room of the Prius. The Prius is a hatchback that replaced my Subaru wagon. I like the convenience and space. The TDI, Echo, Geo have virtually no backseat legroom. They're tiny cars.

    Finally, look at the vehicle emissions. The Prius is one of the cleanest burning cars on the market. When you stop, it turns off, no emissions. Few cars can say that. The point is that hybrids are now, not future. Toyota is doing it right and they will continue to improve. If low-sulfur diesel becomes a reality in the US, I suspect we'll be seeing diesel-hybrids. Toyota is eventually switching it's entire line of cars to hybrid. The Camry hybrid just came out. And the market seems to agree, they're selling as fast as they can make them.
  20. Turner-n-Burner

    Turner-n-Burner New Member

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    Colin,
    Do you really believe that most people drive long distances on the highway in little to no traffic where they can use their cruise control? Most people I know that have highway commutes can read the morning paper draped over their steering wheel.

    Hybrids are designed to minimize the locomotive losses of inertia. They recover energy when braking, use stored energy when accelerating, and eliminate idling. The inefficiencies of optimal highway driving are due to aerodynamic drag... which increases as a square of airspeed. Go twice as fast, 4 times the drag. Regardless of the size and number of cylinders you have you have propelling the vehicle, the power required is roughly the same. It is mostly the shape of the car and its velocity that dictates the energy required to propel it. The rest is mostly tire choice.

    For the conditions that a very large segment of the driving population actually experience, hybrids are a very good solution. The problem is that the current "cool factor" has eliminated the normal market forces that allows people to negotiate purchase price. That too will change.

    -Dan
  21. Sundeep Arole

    Sundeep Arole New Member

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    Folks thank you so much for your responses! All great ideas.
    I will be out for a couple of weeks, my father passed and I have to take care of all the family business.
    Will be back with you all soon.
  22. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    Just go back to the first post... it said "bang for the buck." People often lose sight of that - many of your arguments are things like it's cool, incremental pollution benefit, my kids friends like it, we're doing something good... Nothing wrong with that, but if this guy is looking for investment payback, there are much better choices out there. I'm not the only person saying it - pretty much any impartial observer comes to the same conclusion like CR, AAA, and countless other third party sources.

    I know hybrid owners get really defensive because you pay top $ MSRP for these cars, but some of your facts were flat out wrong in trying to rationalize this economically (like HP claims) - this is where people get a little over the top with it. Neat car, but if this guy really wants an econo-commuter car, he might have much better choices that don't say hybrid on the back and should think it through carefully for his own situation.

    -Colin
  23. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I'm very sorry to hear of your loss. Take good care of yourself and family.
  24. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I've been pretty clear that I think the investment argument is silly. I can't think of a car I've ever bought from a pure investment standpoint unless I was looking to sell it quickly. Why buy a CRX? Investment or fun? People buy cars for all sorts of reasons. A lot of times it's just for the image. Most SUV owners would have a real hard time justifying the investment. But a super-low emission vehicle is a small investment in our kid's future, so maybe I'm wrong and did get the car as an investment after all.
  25. carpniels

    carpniels Minister of Fire

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    Hi Dylan,

    Sorry for the lack of information. I have had these new windows for 2 years now. Never any frost except when the temp is below 0. I installed the cellular shade in december. All of a sudden every morning frosted windows. Even at temp in the 20s. So the shade insulates so well that the cold coming in through the window is collected behind the shade and causes frost. The room was also noticable warmer in the morning than before.

    About hybrids: if you want to drive them to be cool or help the environment, fine. As a liability (remember, cars are NOT investments as they continually decrease in value) hybrids are not as good as similarly priced cars, because the depreciation is much larger. The reason is that the batteries are warranteed for 8 years or 80,000 miles. A new one is about $3,500 (from what the dealers told me. They are not certain yet since they have not sold separate batteries yet). If this is true, who want to buy a 5 year old used hybrid if it needs a $3,500 repair in 3 years. NO ONE. This repair cost will be figured into the trade in price and thus hybrids have much steeper depreciation that regular gas cars. No one has addressed this battery replacement cost yet, but in a few years, the first serie prius and Honda Insights are up and the batteries will start dying and then it will be in the news about how terrible the cost of replacement is and BOOM hybrid hype is over. Moreover, I hope that by then diesels will be more prevalent which have identical depreciation scales as gas cars (or even better, due to their engine's longevity) and get 30-40% better gas mileage. All problems will be solved then.

    Carpniels

    P.S. who wouldn't want a small car with 50+ mpg, a midsize with 40+ mpg and a minivan with 30+ mpg. They have them in Europe!!!!
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