MANCHESTER, England (AP):There’s growing competition for discovery of the season in the English Premier League.Leading the way are N’Golo Kante, the box-to-box French midfielder propelling Leicester to an unlikely title triumph; Dele Alli, the Tottenham playmaker plucked from England’s third tier; and Marcus Rashford, Manchester United’s 18-year-old striker who seems born for the big time.Time to add Arsenal winger Alex Iwobi to the list.Iwobi, like Rashford, is a shy yet fearless teenager who has burst onto centre stage in the world’s most popular league in recent weeks. Arsenal’s all-star midfield is a tough department to break into, yet Iwobi has achieved it seemingly out of nowhere.He has started four of Arsenal’s last five matches, including a Champions League game away to the mighty Barcelona. He has scored and been named man of the match in the last two appearances, against Everton and Watford in the Premier League.Theo Walcott is in desperate need of game time to retain his place in England’s squad for the European Championship, but is currently playing second fiddle to Iwobi on the right wing.He may have to get used to it.Iwobi, 19, is the nephew of Nigeria great Jay-Jay Okocha and has been at Arsenal since the age of eight, having grown up in London. He is a powerful, hard-working, technically gifted attacker with an eye for goal just as Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger likes it.BIG HITIwobi, Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez as the three floating forwards behind the main striker? It’s some prospect and already proving a big hit.”He is an intelligent boy who loves football, very passionate about the game, keen to learn, very humble as well,” Wenger has said of Iwobi.”It’s surprising how quickly he’s integrated into our game.”Iwobi’s accomplished display at the Camp Nou really made people sit up and take note of a player who didn’t start a game in the first half of the season. During the recent international break, Iwobi made his debut for Nigeria in a loss to Egypt – stamping his allegiance to the African country having played for England’s youth teams up to under-18 level.A call-up to Nigeria’s squad for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in August is in the offing – but first he might just be Arsenal’s secret weapon as the team looks to secure a 19th straight season of Champions League football.Impressive wins over Everton and Watford have consolidated third place with seven games left, and even kept Arsenal with an outside shot at the title. That, however, would require an implosion by surprise leaders Leicester, who are seven clear of second-place Tottenham and 11 ahead of Arsenal, who have a game in hand.Arsenal visit West Ham tomorrow while Leicester travel to relegation-threatened Sunderland and Tottenham host Manchester United.TITLE IN SIGHTLeicester are grinding out the wins as they close in on arguably the most stunning title success in English football history, having picked up four straight 1-0 victories ahead of the trip to Sunderland.Sunderland are proving tough to beat of late, drawing their last four games, but have slipped four points from safety. Sunderland might be in more desperate need of the points at the Stadium of Light.
If you’re lucky enough to have a garage, you already know it can be used for more than keeping your car out of the snow. As Kent Jeffery explains in a Q&A post at GreenBuildingAdvisor, garages also are useful for car and equipment repairs, and for storing garden vegetables, cans of paint and anything else a spouse may not want in the house.But in order for a garage to serve those purposes, the temperature has to be above freezing — and for much of the country that means a source of heat.Jeffery is in the midst of a house construction project, but already is thinking ahead to what his heating options might be for the garage. He’d like to keep a temperature of 45°F with an occasional boost to 65°F while he’s working on a project.The options he’s considering include a direct-vent natural gas heater, electric resistance heat, a ductless minisplit heat pump, an unvented natural gas heater, or a portable heater used only when he needs it.Any suggestions? That’s the topic for this Q&A Spotlight. His 1989 house is anything but superinsulated, so WD added some insulation to the access doors, put clear plastic over the windows, and added 2 inches of polyiso foam insulation to the moveable garage doors (not an easy task).“The result was a garage that was noticeably warmer in cold weather and cooler in warm weather,” Jeffery writes. “It’s about 5°F warmer than ambient during cool weather. I’ve used the garage for winter construction since then and wore a jacket but didn’t need additional heating.”The bottom line, he adds, is that “I had little or no justification for a heater.” If Jeffery’s garage is going to be superinsulated like the rest of the house, he may find that the last option (heat only with a portable heater when it’s really necessary) is worth a try.That’s essentially the approach also adopted by Nick T. in Minnesota. He recently added insulation in the garage attic, and at least in mid-November was enjoying temperatures 30 degrees above outside ambient air.When he needs heat, Nick uses an electric infrared heater plus a box fan in the door between the garage and house. His high-efficiency furnace does most of the work. The no-heat optionWriting from the Chicago area, GBA reader WD tells the tale of a neighbor who installed a fancy gas-fired furnace in his three-bay garage but then found he rarely uses it. Maybe that’s because an attached garage picks up enough residual heat from the house, as WD found in his own case. RELATED ARTICLES A radiant floor with a direct-vent water heaterChuck Jensen decided to heat his 24 foot by 26 foot detached garage in Climate Zone 6b with a radiant floor system consisting of PEX tubing buried in the concrete slab.“For the heat source I used the smallest on-demand Rinnai propane direct-vent [water heater] available,” Jensen says. “It is set up with a Taco pump feeding the input and a manual bypass valve for circulating without the Rinnai in the loop. Control is just a timer that runs the pump at intervals for a short period. There is no thermostat. The Rinnai fires up when the pump runs due to the flow.”The heating system “buffers nicely,” he adds, and keeps vehicles and tools good and warm, and he likes the arrangement so much he’s repeating it in a new detached garage that he’s building at a new house. “Very simple and requires very little room,” he says.But when the concrete floor has already been poured, this good advice comes too late, Jeffery replies. In fact, Jeffery has a natural gas boiler and PEX radiant heat in a detached garage/shop — too bad he can’t use this approach in the garage. Using a Tankless Water Heater for Space HeatEnergy-Efficient Garage DoorsShould I Insulate My Garage Door?A Stupid — and Illegal — Way to Air Condition Your Garage Q&A: Garage Wall InsulationGreen Basics: Water HeatingGreen Basics: Green Heating OptionsFrom Fine Homebuilding: Heating Options for a Small Home Gas or electric infrared heatersFor temporary heating for a weekend project, Charlie Sullivan suggests an electric infrared (IR) heater, a simple unit with a quartz element and reflector but no fan. “If you want to go all out you can mount those on the ceiling so there’s IR heat everywhere,” he writes, “but you can also get a portable one and just put it where you are working.”IR heaters might be a good solution, Jeffery says, but the goal here is to protect canned goods, not so much provide personal comfort. “So,” he says, “really looking for a low-level ambient heat of air and objects… at low cost.”Dana Dorsett suggests the heating load would probably be about 10,000 Btu/hour, but a 30,000 Btu/h heater might not be too much if the garage were normally at 45° or 50°F and Jeffery wanted to bring the temperature up fairly quickly.“Non-condensing air-delivery gas-burners are going to have a problem at 45°F indoor temps, but a condensing version could work,” he says. “But ceiling or wall-bracket mounted gas radiant heaters don’t have that problem, and would be far more comfortable while the place is still coming up to its temperature, since it is heating the objects in the garage (including the humans) directly, not heating the air first.”These heaters are common in large warehouses, he adds, “since comfort can be achieved at lower temperatures, limiting the comfort shock and shortening the comfort recovery when large doors get opened and closed.” Our expert’s opinionHere’s GBA technical director Peter Yost:I think we all can agree on these points:1. Insulating a garage door can be cheap and easy (either DIY or with one of many commercially available solutions, such as this one), but air-sealing a door is really hard. I checked in with local builder members of the Sustainable Energy Outreach Network and they all agreed that while gasketing between individual door panels and the concrete floor can be done, air sealing at the head of the door and along the side tracks is damn near impossible.2. True radiant heating (not in-floor “radiant”) is the best heating solution for quick response and situations where there is a lot of air leakage.3. Radiant floor heating systems — hydronic or electric — are high mass, not quick to respond at all, and not a good match for situations with lots of air leakage.Jeffery is actually asking for two types of heating: background, steady heat for perishables and intermittent task heating. That is a bit of a tall order. Fast-acting radiant systems are well-suited for the latter because thermal comfort is based largely on the operative temperature (about 50% contribution from air temperature and 50% from mean radiant temperature) and in a garage you can quickly boost the mean radiant and achieve comfort with a reduced air temperature.But that low air temperature and high mean radiant temperature can’t be sustained over long periods of time because delivered radiant heat is inevitably re-expressed as conduction and convection. The air temperature will gradually rise, unless you have a lot of air changes. So while there is greater thermal comfort and efficiency of fast-acting radiant systems for task heating, those advantages don’t translate well for background steady space heating.The bottom line? Insulate and air seal the garage as best you can to minimize what you need to deliver for background steady heat and use fast-acting radiant heat for your tasks. (For more information, see Space Heaters).I would recommend electric ceiling radiant heating panels for these reasons: they provide good, unobstructed “viewing” angles up and out of the way on the ceiling; they’re easy to wire and more panels can be added as needed; and they modulate for both background steady heat and fast-acting radiant task heating.The only drawback may be that their surface operating temperatures (around 165°F) may not lift the mean radiant temperature enough for all tasks in the garage, but you could augment the ceiling panels with a task panel installed on the underside of a shelf above your workbench; the task panels are standard wall plug units. (The ceiling panels are hardwired either for 110 volt or 220 volt service.) Be cautious of benzene threatDonald Endsley points to a concern about attached garages that applies regardless of a heating system: elevated levels of benzene inside the house. “Benzene is a chemical pollutant that basically evaporates from gas and oil stored in the garage, and also enters the garage through unburned hydrocarbons in vehicle exhaust,” he says. “Basically to counteract this the garage needs to be at a lower air pressure than the house is. That means you really need to add a continuous exhaust fan to the garage.”Longterm problems associated with exposure to benzene include anemia, leukemia, and possibly non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and multiple myeloma, he says. It’s a known carcinogen with no known safe exposure level.Although he hasn’t confirmed his hunch with any tests, Endsley estimates that a fan moving between 15 and 30 cubic feet per minute would be about right.