ReNEWW House

Retrofit Net Zero: Energy. Water. Waste.

Whirlpool Corporation, along with Purdue University, has transformed an existing home near Purdue’s campus into a world class research laboratory and sustainable living showcase. ReNEWW stands for Retrofitted Net-zero Energy, Water & Waste and represents the aspirational vision for the project: to convert a home, originally built in 1928, to offset all its energy use with solar power, to only rely on locally available water sources, and to have waste handling systems in place that prevent any household waste from going to the landfill. ReNEWW House is providing valuable insights for our homebuilder collaborators and customers on technologies that enable sustainable living. We leverage the world class facilities and collaborate with Purdue researchers to accelerate the development of the next generation of ultra-high efficiency appliances that increase core performance while lowering their impact on the environment and cost to operate.

ReNEWW House in the News

Whirlpool Corporation Once Again Earns Top Score In Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2023-2024 Corporate Equality Index

Whirlpool Corporation announced today that it received a score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2023-2024 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), the nation’s foremost benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ+...

Maytag Brand Brings Day of Dependability to Benton Harbor Boys & Girls Club

The Maytag brand treated 250 members and staff of the Benton Harbor, Michigan Boys & Girls Club to a Thanksgiving inspired meal and an evening of fun and entertainment as part of their annual Day of Dependability. Volunteers from Maytag and the broader Whirlpool...

Whirlpool Corporation Unveils Revolutionary SlimTech™ Insulation Technology – The Latest in a History of Innovation

Whirlpool Corporation introduces SlimTech™ insulation, the first vacuum insulated structure (VIS) technology in a refrigerator in the North American market. This technology represents a significant step forward in refrigeration technology, which has long relied on bulky polyurethane foam for insulation. By using a proprietary material that is vacuum-sealed within the door or sides of the refrigerator itself, SlimTech™ insulation can reduce the wall thickness by up to 66% – allowing for up to 25% more capacity inside the refrigerator.

2023 Day of Impact

Earlier this summer, Whirlpool Corporation hosted a “Day of Impact” employee volunteer day of service to make improvements to Broadway Park in Benton Harbor. The selection of the park and vision for improvements were planned by working closely with Benton Harbor city...

Whirlpool Corporation Reaches $125 Million Giving Milestone with Habitat for Humanity International

Habitat for Humanity International today announced that Whirlpool Corporation has surpassed the $125 million in-kind donated product milestone to Habitat. Over the lifetime of the relationship, which began in 1999, Whirlpool Corp. has donated more than 241,000 major...

Whirlpool Brand Increases Access to Laundry in Schools Through Its Care Counts™ Laundry Program

Appliances installed in schools through the program now provide an estimated 50,000 students across 40 states with access to clean clothes, helping to combat chronic absenteeism Whirlpool brand announces its eighth and biggest year of the Care Counts™ Laundry Program,...

Whirlpool Corporation Supports 13th Habitat for Humanity Build with Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business

Whirlpool employees and students from IU and the Kelley School worked together building a home for Cherri Morris and her four grandchildren on Friday and the home was dedicated on Saturday at IU’s homecoming game. This is the 13th build in conjunction with Whirlpool...

Whirlpool Corporation Helps Build Foundation for Cross-platform Home Appliance Connectivity

Matter 1.2 update, in which Whirlpool Corp. was an active participant with other appliance manufacturers, includes new support and features for washing machines, refrigerators, and dishwashers Whirlpool Corporation announced its support for the newly launched Matter...

How Disability Inclusion Improves Life at Home

The Awareness of Visible and Invisible Disabilities (AVID) Employee Resource Group (ERG) at Whirlpool Corporation strives to progress the company’s vision of improving life at home, including for the 1 in 4 people globally who experience a disability. In celebration...

Unconscious Bias & Empathy Training

Pledge Commitment Met. Starting in late 2021, a three-part Unconscious Bias & Empathy training course was deployed to all U.S. based people leaders. Over 1300 employees attended this training. While this Pledge commitment was met in 2022, our learning journey...

Why Retrofit?

The average age of a single family home in the US is 34 years old, meaning that much of the existing housing stock was constructed in an era that offered both relatively inexpensive energy and did not consider carbon dioxide as a form of pollution that contributes to global warming.  Consequently, simple energy efficiency measures are sorely lacking in these homes—a problem with far reaching consequences, but also an opportunity for substantial energy savings.

The ReNEWW House retrofit sought to both preserve the historic character of the house, while also vastly improving its’ overall energy and water efficiency. The retrofit took place in 3 stages – first, a deep energy retrofit to get to Net Zero Energy. This was followed by an interior remodel and water system retrofit to achieve Net-Zero Water Usage, in which Whirlpool worked with Kohler Corporation. Finally, Ford Motor Company enabled the addition of a new garage with a Ford Focus BEV and EV Charging Station.

Before & After - Front of House

Before & After - Back of House

Before & After - Kitchen

Before & After - Central Area

Before & After - Basement

Before & After - Garage

Net Zero Energy

According to the US Department of Energy (DOE), residential housing units account for 22 percent of the total primary energy usage in the US. Over two thirds of this energy is used for HVAC, appliances, or water heating¹. Since the ReNEWW House is in a heating climate with many cloudy days, the home underwent a massive energy retrofit to address energy consumption and storage. This included new appliances, insulation, HVAC, water heater, lighting, windows, doors, siding and roofing. In addition, a drainline heat recovery system was added to recover waste energy from the shower drain and use it to heat incoming cold water. Finally, to get to Net Zero Energy, a Solar Thermal (PVT) System was added to the roof, to generate as much energy in one year as is used inside the house.


Solar Panel – South Side


Solar Panel – West Side


Outside Insulation


Siding & Windows


Geothermal HVAC


Water Heating


Drain Heat Recovery


LED Lighting

Net Zero Water

The average person in the United States uses 91 gallons of water per day. This water use translates into roughly $1000 per American family per year to pay for their water usage. Much of this water usage is potable, treated water that is flushed immediately down the drain. In phase 2 of the ReNEWW House Retrofit, the old, outdated water-using fixtures and appliances were replaced with new, water-efficient Kohler fixtures and Whirlpool appliances. In addition, rainwater harvesting and filtration was installed onsite for all potable water applications. Finally, in an effort to offset potable water usage for toilet flushing, a CleanBlu Greywater treatment system was installed onsite. After all these improvements, the residents of the house have been consuming roughly 21 gallons per person, per day… a ~75% reduction in water usage!

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