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Typical Residential

asked 2014-11-19 16:51:15 -0500

aloomans gravatar image

Hello, I am fairly new to EnergyPlus so forgive my novice questions.

To give some background: I recently modeled a 1 story single family residential home, with about a 100 sqm footprint. It's an extremely open floor plan with the majority of the interior walls designated as Air Walls. I assigned it 14 zones, 3 "SmallHotel::Corridor" and 11 "MidriseApartment::Apartment" zones. I used these zones because it was the closest I could find to single family residential type zones (correct me if I'm wrong and should be using different zone programs). The building has a long-bar like rectangular plan with the south facade completely glazed and the north facade only minimally glazed (New York epw file).

After running a simulation I get (what I believe to be) an extremely high total energy ouput of 46208kwh annually. This is totaled from energy output of every zone.

So my question is: I know 14 zones is probably a lot for that small of square footage but it's necessary to get the geometry I want. I also know that the "MidriseApartment::Apartment" loads and schedules is being applied to each of those zones which may be giving it an abnormally high numbers because of "overlapped/multiplied" load and schedule data? (That's just my guess, correct me if I'm wrong.) So what is a quick and appropriate way to reduce these loads besides just manually guessing at possible load and schedule data? Or am I just crazy and the energy output I'm getting is how it should be?

Boils down to: What is a typical total energy output for a residential space of that size and what are some tips and tricks to get the zones and schedules of a single family residential simulation accurate?

(Also to note that I'm completely confident in my materials and constructions and don't believe that to be a factor)

Thanks in advance!

  • Aaron
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answered 2014-11-19 18:37:10 -0500

updated 2014-11-19 18:39:54 -0500

First, do you have energy by end use as an output? Without knowing where the energy is being used it's hard to say why electricity use is more typical of a small commercial building. If the energy end use doesn't show a clear anomaly you're guess about the midrise apartment is probably correct.

I'm not familiar with Honeybee, but if you divide your annual kWh by the 11 midrise apartment zones it's closer to what you'd expect for a single family detached residential building. In other words maybe you've fit 11 homes into one! Here are some resources that might help...

EIA Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) 2009

DOE Building America House Simulation Protocols

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answered 2015-02-07 21:58:59 -0500

Just for the record the schedules in Honeybee are the same as OpenStudio. You can also visualize all the schedules in Honeybee and make sure it looks fine:

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For anyone interested, the schedules and constructions for OpenStudio templates are defined this this repository:

There is a spreadsheet containing all the data and a conveinient JSON format export containing all the information (except schedules, but those will be added at some point).

macumber gravatar imagemacumber ( 2015-02-08 11:54:38 -0500 )edit

answered 2014-11-22 18:30:13 -0500

scottb gravatar image

If it is a detached home, try modelling it using BEOpt

It will get you a rough estimate of energy consumption very quickly. You could further edit the exported IDF to suite your needs.

Once you are more comfortable with EnergyPlus and results interpretation. Start with a simple model in OpenStudio and slowly build it up.

As you mentioned 462kWh/m2 is high for residential (depends on your climate of course)


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Asked: 2014-11-19 16:51:15 -0500

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Last updated: Feb 07 '15