Home Energy Audit: Your Questions Answered - NEC Coop
May 3, 2022 — Electric Tips at Home, Energy Efficiency, Resources
Do you find yourself sweating in the summer even if the air conditioning is on full blast? Have you noticed that one room is always cold during the winter months? Is your energy bill higher than usual? If you answered yes to any of these questions, it could be high time for an energy audit.
Getting an energy audit done in your home is one of the best ways to lower your energy costs and utility bills. Let us go over how a home energy audit helps assess your home’s overall performance and condition so you can feel more comfortable while lowering your energy bills.
Why is it necessary to perform an energy audit?
Did you know that an average energy bill in the U.S. is more than $2,000 annually? By adopting energy efficiency measures, an average homeowner could save on their energy bill drastically.
Every home is unique – just like its homeowner. Energy bills are dependent on the lifestyle, climate, and many other factors, like energy deregulation and prices. Because of this, energy audits are tailor-fit for every home.
Why is an audit important?
When a professional conducts an energy audit, he considers not just the home’s energy consumption and waste. Energy audits can help determine high-return, low-cost repairs that are needed. It can also help identify the approximate costs of repairs and what concerns or problem areas to prioritize.
Simply put, an energy audit helps determine as well as organize how you perceive energy conservation planning.
How can I prepare for an energy audit?
Before calling in a professional, it’s best to do a thorough evaluation of your home.
- Review your utility bills for the past 1-2 years to get a better understanding of your home’s energy use.
- Conduct a home assessment. How many rooms does the household use, how often and when is it being used? Are there unusually cold areas?
- How often do members of your household stay in the home?
What are the benefits of having an energy audit performed?
An average American cannot perform all the energy performance checks efficiently and safely. A professional auditor brings not only extra, specialized tools but experience and skill to the task.
Based on an energy auditor’s observation and readings, homeowners will be able to get a list of improvement measures and assess the cost-benefit of the recommendations made along with the safety, comfort, and savings they bring.
What may be required after an audit?
The recommendations after an energy audit is performed may include:
- Updating lighting to CFL or LED bulbs
- Sealing air leaks
- Purchasing Energy Star certified appliances
- Ductwork and insulation
- Replacing cooling and heating systems, as well as water heaters with Energy Star products
- Updating windows to better suit the climate
Where can I find a professional that is qualified to perform an energy audit?
When it comes to the assessment of your home’s energy needs, you are better off hiring the services of a recognized professional. Here are some options.
- The U.S. Department of Energy
- The Residential Energy Services Network
- Home Performance page of the Energy Star
This will help narrow down your search. Remember it’s always a smart idea to do your homework – look for customer reviews and references and make sure that the BBB has no complaints about the company.
The sooner you get a home energy audit done, the sooner your home can save money with lower utility bills.
“Where Does My Money Go?” Energy Star, https://www.energystar.gov/products/where_does_my_money_go
“Energy Efficient Products for Consumers,” Energy Star, https://www.energystar.gov/products
“Professional Home Energy Assessments,” U.S. Department of Energy, https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/professional-home-energy-assessments
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