The Best of St. Croix
Energy Efficient House
2009
It was a pretty hot day when we went to see the energy efficient solar home model
that was built on the East End of St. Croix. That meant that we could see and feel, get
the real impact, see the solar panels in action.
Many people were already there when we arrived. The exterior, on the
desert-like East End, was really hot.
Groups of individuals were gathered around the builder
listening to the energy-saving specifications.
Looking toward the roofline, we could see the sheet type
solar panels that lay spread onto the roof surface. The
wiring and connection points are laced down the middle.
These panels are so thin they look like they are painted on.
Outside the pumproom, there is a standard solar panel
which heats the water in the water tank.
The panel in a side view.
The water tank and controllers.
Inside the residence there were many ceiling fans, four
in the livingroom alone. There were also many mini-split
air conditioners. The solar roof will help run all of these.
Information on the system was readily available.
Detail of the roof's construction.
The plotted savings are shown to increase over a 25
year life cycle of the Solar Array.
Double-paned glass doors and windows let in the
maximum light while conserving energy in the home.
Tinting the glass saves even more.
This solar collector on the floor looks like an area rug.
A representative shows a piece of the styrofoam construction
material used in the construction of the home.
Exploring the house, we come to the first floor bedroom.
First floor bath and closet.
Heading upstairs.
Second floor bedroom.
Energy efficient bulbs.
In the attic, the construction method is the most visible
due to the unfinished state of the room.
Insulating material.
Styrofoam wall.
Another bedroom upstairs.
Irrigation system for the front yard.
The deck area where a little spread was laid out.
Representatives from the V.I. Energy Office were on hand.
Back outside, we're headed for the under house storage area.
Under the house the water pipes. and electrical wiring can
be seen along with the A/C units. Having the house up off
the ground allows air to circulate around and aids in cooling.
Another wave of interested individuals arrives.