Lifestyle: East End Eco

HOME ENERGY EFFICIENCY

By Krae Van Sickle - September 29, 2017 - 0 Comments

Many homeowners would be delighted to reduce their property taxes and taxes are often a factor when choosing to make a purchase.  However, many buyers and homeowners overlook the fact they can save money and make their homes warmer in the winter and easier to cool in the summer by taking simple steps to plug up air leaks and install basic energy saving devices.  Below is a conversation with Chuck Schultz of Long Island Green Homes about home energy efficiency and how you can get a free home energy audit.

What is the best reason for improving the energy efficiency of one’s home? Financial benefits? Environmental benefits?  Other benefits?

Our homes are typically where we as individuals consume the most energy.  Unfortunately, unless your home was built in the past few years it is likely that your house is very inefficient.  Besides costing more for heating and electricity than necessary this also contributes to areas in your home that are cold or drafty during the winter or perhaps hard to cool during summer months.

There are very straightforward ways that you can make your home work better and it makes a lot of sense.  Why use more of something when you don’t have to, particularly fossil fuels which aren’t produced in our area, pollute and whose use are a direct cause of climate change?  At the same time, you will directly lower your energy bills.

How much money and energy can you save?

Obviously this will depend on your home’s condition.  On average energy bills can be reduced by 25% or more.  With deeper measures and additional use of renewable energy such as rooftop solar, one can see a reduction of as much as 50% or more.

How much savings come the structural aspects of the house that relate to heating and cooling and how much savings come from the energy using gizmo’s like the type of cooling system, appliances, lighting, etc. that use electricity?

Below is a list of areas of concern we have seen in homes that can be directly linked to high energy bills and discomfort:

Insufficient insulation in the attic

Air flow problems which cause cold air to enter the home and for conditioned air to escape

Inefficient heating and cooling equipment

Hot and cold air losses from leaking ducts into attics

Overuse of energy consuming equipment

Temperatures set too high on thermostats

Use of inefficient light bulbs and lights and equipment left on when unnecessary

What does increasing the efficiency of a home typically entail?  What is the process and what kind of work might be done?

Every house is different and needs to be evaluated on an individual basis.  It all starts with an Energy Audit.  This is a comprehensive study of your house to determine how it uses energy and what remediation measures will be most effective.  Normally this costs $500 or more.  However, we are able to provide all Long Island homeowners with energy audits for no cost through NY State and PSEG funding.  Visit www.longislandgreenhomes.org for more information or to sign up.

Following the energy audit there are additional financial assistance including rebates, incentives and low interest financing available to help resolve any issues found in your home.

Money saving action Items: 

Get a free energy audit and make efficiency improvements in your home

Call TRI ENERGY for assistance in achieving energy efficiency and solar

 

Facts about energy:

Americans surpassed using their fair share of global warming emissions in 1944

People in the US are 4% of the world population and have emitted almost 1/3 of the worlds carbon emissions

We use 2x as much as the average Chinese, Japanese or German

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