Saving Money Through Energy Efficiency
We all use energy in one form or another in our homes. Ideally, this energy usage isn’t a shock when each month’s utility bill arrives. However, keeping track of the growing number of devices that plug in, on top of our existing appliances and electronics, can be dizzying. Fortunately, there are a number of ways – both simple and more advanced – that can work to lower our bills and increase energy efficiency.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What makes up my electric bill, and how I can lower it?
- How can I conduct an energy audit of my own home?
- How can I lower my energy bill and still keep my family comfortably warm?
- What type of HVAC system is best for me?
- How can I find a reputable HVAC company to do maintenance, repairs and future installations?
- Should I replace my windows?
- I’ve been noticing ants, spiders and the like in certain parts of my home. How can I keep them from coming in?
- What are some ways I can save money when gardening and planting?
- I’m going on vacation soon — what steps can I take to save energy while I’m gone?
Utility Bills and Conducting Audits
- Home Performance with ENERGY STAR House as a System Video
- National Association for State Community Services House as a System Video
- ENERGY STAR Save at Home
Heating and Cooling
- Maintaining Your Cooling System ENERGY STAR Video
- ENERGY STAR’s Guide to Energy Efficient Heating and Cooling
- North American Technician Excellence Annual Energy Savings Calculator for Heating and Cooling Systems
- ENERGY STAR Tips for Hiring a Heating and Cooling Contractor
- North American Technician Excellence
- Find It Duke
- Building Performance Institute
Additional Advanced Energy at Home Topics
Many homes built on crawl space foundations in the Southeast suffer from poor moisture management. Symptoms are commonly noticed in the humid spring and summer seasons but can occur any time of year. Occupants typically call a heating and cooling contractor to address the problem, but it is often the result of poor moisture control in the crawl space.
We are surrounded by moisture. There’s rain from above, water from below, humidity, household moisture generated from breathing, plants and cooking, and more. However, we do have control over a few key areas: where and how our homes experience moisture from the outside and the inside, and the choice of materials used at these locations.
Incorporating New Technologies
We continue to add new technologies to our homes to make our lives more efficient, convenient, affordable, customizable and environmentally friendly. Sometimes these devices and appliances can be overwhelming, but there are a number of ways we can make them work for us and meet our goals and needs.
Indoor Air Quality
The buildings we live in affect our health in many ways. In recent years, research has linked poor health impacts to characteristics of the building environment, including the presence of moisture, airborne volatile organic compounds, allergens, particulates, radon and combustion byproducts such as carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides. Increasingly, policymakers like the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy have sought to improve home conditions to enhance the health of the constituencies they serve.