How much energy could you possibly save in your home? A penny saved is a penny earned we know, but it seems like such a bother. We are busy we don’t need any more hassles How much can you actually save?
You can save significant amounts of money. Every Texas home- I assume you do not have a new certified green home, or you wouldn’t be reading this… your home has a unique set of defects that waste energy. Your home’s level of energy efficiency can actually be measured.
Your home can be audited to increasing level of sophistication- to give you a good sense of what you can save, to measuring how much air your home leaks- how much energy your lighting and appliances use- to how well your home is insulated- and right up to verifying the results with more testing after all the projects are done.
In fact, you as a homeowner can get an energy efficiency loan based on an energy audit which prioritized energy efficiency improvements that match your home’s needs, and testing verifies the results anticipated by the energy efficiency testing process.
The energy efficiency loans are based on the premise that you can pay for your energy efficiency investments with the monthly savings from energy not paid for.
There are certainly many more options to explore and much more fundamental information to understand, but it makes sense to find out, because the savings will be substantial and add up over the months and months and years and decades ahead.
We talk more about financing later. It is in the national interest to save energy and protect investments in home structures. The money is available.
We talk more about your options for auditing energy use here.[stextbox id=”info” caption=”Your Family’s personal energy using habits are the big independent variable” bwidth=”2″] You might be surprised how much impact personal habits have on how a home uses energy. This is good news because conscientious planning and energy use can really help make a difference. Lets discuss personal energy use habits here.[/stextbox]
Lets Identify more Virtues from Committing to Energy Efficiency
Humidity control is such a critical factor in your personal comfort but also the health of your home. The process of making a home more energy efficient requires that humidity issues be identified and controlled. You might not even realize the level of humidity in your home, but you are very likely impacted by the ramifications of too much humidity.
You can easily be using more cooling energy in the cooling season to feel comfortable when infact you are feeling clammy- is that a word you have heard before? odd word- but sticky, moist and uncomfortable are the results of too much humidity.
Humidity issues in your home relate directly to moist hot Texas air leaking into your conditioned home. Air leaks are not just an energy efficiency issue but a health issue.
Do any members of your household have allergies or regular bouts of sinus infection or… the list of ailments related to mold spores and other biological contaminants related to humidity and moisture problems is long. We look at healthy air issues here.
You might also get hints of structural issues relating to other moisture issues. Water leaks destroy wood structurea and grow mold. Mold makes home unhealthy. Therefore, keeping water out is a huge virtue. Catching a risk of a leak or a leak as early as possible, can save aggravation, interruption and devastation to the wallet. This is a diversion but we talk about how water gets into homes here.
You just never know what kind of mayhem you might find with moisture issues related to fans in the house. A quest for energy efficiecy can be the first step on all kinds of good discoveries. We do make lemonade from lemons here. You do not want to discover damage from moisture, but the sooner you find out you have an issue, the better off your are.
A quest to find out if you can save money through energy efficiency can help you be aware of issues which are impacting the longevity of your home. Water leaks impact energy efficiency and the process of looking around can help head off all kinds of issues.
Be careful What You Believe and what you buy about Energy Efficiency
Now you also must be aware of BS in the marketplace. There are all kinds of”solutions” that treat symptoms but do not actually impact the underlying fundamental issues. If you have a humidity problem, the solution is not necessarily a dehumidifier; but a solution that accounts for why your home has a humidity problem. Too much of what we think we know about saving energy is driven by sales and marketing. Here is the ongoing list of stuff not to buy… at least not until you have the fundamentals solved.
You must also deal with the issue of contractors who see all your issues through the lens of their products and services. Building science is changing the best practices knowledge base for all disciplines in the construction trades. Mechanical and structural.
Many myths of the past are being put away for new methods based on business science and home performance. but put away slowly. All kinds of pressures to make a buck, make a sale impact what you are offered as solutions.
Many contractors are stuck in the past, busy doing things like they always have done things. It is your battle to understand the big fundamental issues so that you can spot BS and conventional wisdom that does not work. Here are some thoughts on what you need to be aware.
What would be smart first steps towards energy savings?
First off, you need some background on the basic natural forces which are acting on your home. We call these the natural forces acting on your home.
Then a critical component of energy efficiency relates to any mechanical issues in your home. Your HVAC system might be a part of the problem you have with humidity. We address these critical factors in energy efficiency here.
You need to understand this, because
- when you better understand the principles
- when you better understand the weaknesses and strengths of measuring systems
- when you get a feel for the science involved
Then when you have a feeling for the basics then you are ready to talk to a professional. You need the right professional to help you down a path of professional assessments- from an initial visual audit right up to the level of auditing that you need.
The perspective helps. The real information helps. You know where you stand.
We talk about the audit process from initial consultation to testing and on to verification- the entire process of testing here.
Don’t let the financing part scare you.
There is money available for all levels of income. There should be more, but that is a conversation for another day.
You can get a Tax Credit for Energy Saving Investments
You really do need to understand your options for writing off energy improvements on your taxes. These can be a big help. Just don’t get talked into a stinky investment because you can save some of it on your taxes. Save your tax credit for what can make the biggest bang for you. More on tax credits here.
There are all level of energy saving projects and remodeling effort that fit here.
You can easily decide that you want ot remodel and integrate smart energy efficiency into that process. You can do what you want and there are key people to help you along your path to happiness with energy saving at home…. and more comfort…. and more reliability built in…
The money is available. You can save considerable funds by saving on energy every month. What might you end up with that will make you happy, that cost you little more than the money going out the ceiling via wasted energy?
Any questions or comments? feel free to add them below.