10 Ways to Reduce Your Energy Costs. 10 Ways to Reduce Your Home Energy Costs 3/9/2015. Overview

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1 10 Ways to Reduce Your Home Energy Costs Presented by: Charlie Hudson Business Development Account Representative, NASA FCU Phone: (301) Ext. 267 Overview 10 Ways to Reduce Your Energy Costs Long-Term Savings Improvements larger investment today, saving over the coming years Green Alternatives new technology that can change how you heat, cool, and power your home Resources Questions 10 Ways to Reduce Your Energy Costs 1

2 1. Perform an Energy Audit (Self-Assessment) Did you know that 60% of all home energy use is for heating? Start with a simple self assessment: Utility Bills for energy consumptions (note the daily use statistics available with most providers) Insulation (attic, exterior & basement walls, ceilings, floors, and craw spaces) Check for air leaks (walls, ceilings, windows, doors, lighting and plumbing fixtures, switches, and electrical outlets) Fireplace dampers Appliance operation: Check your manual for recommended use and energy conservation Large Appliances (HVAC): have serviced regularly Lighting: study your use, consider sensors, dimmers, or timers to reduce usage. 1. Perform an Energy Audit (Self-Assessment) Professional Energy Audit Recommendations Could Save 5 30% on your energy bill Certified Home Energy Auditors Examine: Your billed energy consumption Problems you are aware regarding how the home operates Interior and Exterior Spaces Home Health and Safety Electrical Systems Combustion appliances Provide summary and recommended actions in a comprehensive energy report 1. Perform An Energy Audit (Professional-Assessment) Average cost of a Professional Home Energy Audit -$300 -$500 Where to find an auditor: Local electric or gas utility RESNET Uses the proprietary Home Energy Rating System (HERS) Index to give homeowners a standard by which they can measure energy efficiency Source: Bankrate.com, US Department of Energy, RESNET 2

3 2. Adjust Ceiling Fans For The Season Ceiling Fan Facts: Ceiling Fan s work best in rooms: With ceilings at least 8 in height Blades that are 7 9 off the floor Blades are below the ceiling When buying a fan, consider ones with an ENERGY STAR rating Generally cost $50.00 more Quieter and are 20% more efficient. Ceiling Fan s cool people not rooms: The produce a wind chill effect to cool Turn fans off in empty rooms Ceiling Fan s provide an updraft in the winter by reversing direction to force warm air down: Summer: Run the fan counterclockwise Winter: Run the fan clockwise If used properly, ceiling fan s can allow for a 4⁰F adjustment in your central thermostat with no reduction in comfort. Source: US Department of Energy, Energy Star 3. Use Home Ventilation Fans Only When Necessary Home ventilation fans are used to help control moisture and remove objectionable odors. Serve a critical role in creating a healthy indoor environment Can remove much of the moisture that builds up from everyday activities Help to keep RH below 50%. ENERGY STAR rated models: Use 70% less energy Feature high performance motors improved blade design, providing better performance longer life. Turn fan off once exhausted: Bathroom fan minutes Consider models with auto-off Source: Energy Star US Environmental Protection Agency ehow 4. Energy-Efficient Computer Use Turn off monitors if not using for a period in excess of 20 minutes. Turn off computers if you not using for a period in excess of 2 hours. Plug monitors, printers, and other peripherals into a power strip or surge suppressant protector Turn the power strip off when not un use for an extended period. Use the ENERGY STAR sleep mode feature to improve energy efficiency Bonus: Turning off a PC can also reduce heat (keeping cooling costs down) 3

4 5. Energy-Efficient Home Appliance Use How do you use your home appliances? Is there a vampire in your home? Vampire loads -power draws that most small appliances use when they are turned off but plugged in. DVD player TV Stereo Computer Kitchen appliances Unplug these divices Plug these appliances into a power strips that you can turn off when not in use. Source: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory 6. Lighting Turn lights off in empty rooms Use Automated lighting controls: Dimmers Motion, occupancy, and photo sensors Timers turn lights on/off at specific times What types of bulb do you have? Type of bulb used = cost effectiveness Traditional Incandescent Least expensive -shortest life span Halogen: A more efficient Incandescent Energy-Saving Reflector or parabolic reflector (Flood Light) Better: CFL s: Use 25% to 35% of the energy Last 10 times as longer More expensive to acquire Payback is over the long term. Note: follow EPA recommendations LEDs: Size of a fleck of pepper, Uses a mix of red, green, and blue Typically used to make white light. Use 25% of the energy of Incandesce Emit just 10% of the heat. Only emit 20% of the heat of CFLs Source: US Department of Energy US Environmental Protection Agency 7. Water Heating Hot water can account for 12% of a family s utility bill DOE tips to help reduce your hot water usage: Take short showers instead of baths Reduce your time in the shower Lower the temperature on your water heater to 120 F Don't let the water run Use cold water for most laundry loads, and always use cold water for the rinse cycle. Use your dishwasher efficiently Fix leaks Install low-flow fixtures Install heat traps on your water heater tank (older units) Insulate hot water tank Insulate the first few feet of the hot and cold water pipes connected to the water heater Install a timer (electric heaters) 4

5 8. Heating and Cooling Spaces Efficiently Heating and cooling is 48% of utility cost. DOE offers these simple tips to improve efficiency: Clean or replace A/C & furnace filters once a month or as recommended. Clean warm-air registers, baseboard heaters, and radiators as needed; Make sure heat supply not blocked by furniture, carpeting, or drapes. Eliminate trapped air from hot-water radiators once or twice a season Place heat-resistant radiator reflectors between exterior walls and the radiators. During winter, keep the draperies and shades on your south-facing windows open during the day and closed at night During summer, keep the window coverings closed during the day to block the sun's heat. 8. Heating and Cooling Spaces Efficiently Tips to Maintain Your Air Conditioner Tips to Maintain Your Heating System 9. Effective Thermostat Management Basic Thermostat: Winter: Set the thermostat to 68 F while awake and at home. Turn the thermostat back 10 to 15 while asleep or away from home can save 5 to 15% per year. Summer: Set the thermostat to 78 F while at home and needing cooling Follow the same approach to keeping the home warmer then normal when away. Common misconception: Letting your home temperature drop/rise makes the unit work harder As your house drops below its normal temperature, it will lose energy to the surrounding environment more slowly Programmable Thermostat: Lets you set times for adjusting the temperature automatically Allow you to store multiple programs 5

6 10. Identify and seal air leaks Air leaks waste a lot of money Caulk, seal, and weather strip all seams, cracks, and openings to the outside. Target Areas: Dropped Ceiling Recessed Lights Attic Entrance Sill Plates Water and Furnace Flues All ducts Door Frames Chimney Flashing Window Frames Outlets and Switches Plumbing & Utility Access 10. Identify and seal air leaks The DOE also offers these helpful hints to identify and seal energy leaks: Test your home for air tightness using an incense stick or smoke pen. Caulk and weather-strip doors and windows that leak air. Caulk and seal air leaks where plumbing, ducting, or electrical wiring comes through walls, floors, ceilings, and soffits over cabinets. Install foam gaskets behind outlet and switch plates on walls. Inspect dirty spots in your insulation for air leaks and mold. Seal leaks with low-expansion spray foam Look for dirty spots on your ceiling paint and carpet, which may indicate air leaks at interior wall/ceiling joints and wall/floor joists, and caulk them. Cover single-pane windows with storm windows Use foam sealant on larger gaps around windows, baseboards, and other places where air may leak out. Cover your kitchen exhaust fan to stop air leaks when not in use. Check your dryer vent to be sure it is not blocked. This will save energy and may prevent a fire. Replace door bottoms and thresholds with ones that have pliable sealing gaskets. Keep the fireplace flue damper tightly closed when not in use. Seal air leaks around fireplace chimneys, furnaces, and gas-fired water heater vents with fire-resistant materials such as sheet metal or sheetrock and furnace cement caulk. Reference Resources Air Leaks: DOE: Energy Saver Tips: Sealing Air Leaks DOE: Energy Saver Savings Project: How to Seal Air Leaks with Caulk DOE: Energy Saver Taking on Scary Basements Energy-Efficient Strategies: DOE: Energy Saver Energy-Efficient Computer Use DOE: Energy Saver Tips: Home Office and Electronics: Home Energy Audits DOE Energy Saver Tips: Your Home s Energy Use DOE: Do-It-Yourself Home Energy Audits DOE: Professional Home Energy Audits DOE: Energy Saver 101 Infographic: Home Energy Audits RESNET HERS Index Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: Standby Power DOE: Energy Saver Lighting Controls Energy Saver When to Turn Off Your Lights DOE: Energy Saver Estimating Appliance and Home Electronic Energy Use DOE: Energy Saver Tips: Appliances Energy Star: Ceiling Fans Ventilation Fans Refrigerators Water Heaters Central Air Energy Saver Calculator Heat Pump Energy Saver Calculator Indoor Air Quality: US EPA Indoor Air Quality Windows and Doors: Energy Saver Doors Energy-Efficient Windows DOE: Energy Saver Storm Windows DOE: Window Types DOE: Energy Saver Energy Performance Ratings for Windows Lighting: DOE: Energy Saver Lighting Controls DOE: Energy Saver When to Turn Off Your Lights DOE: Energy Saver Incandescent Lighting DOE: Energy Saver Fluorescent Lighting EPA: Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFLs) DOE: Energy Saver LED Lighting Hot Water: DOE: Energy Saver 15 Ways to Save on Your Water Heating Bill DOE: Energy Saver Tips: Water Heating DOE: Energy Savings Project: Lower Water Heating Temperature DOE: Energy Saver Reduce Hot Water Use for Energy Savings DOE: Energy Saver Savings Project: Insulate Hot Water Pipes For Energy Savings Heating and Cooling: DOE: Furnace and Boiler Basics DOE: Energy Saver Gas-Fired Boilers and Furnaces DOE: Energy Saver Oil-Fired Boilers and Furnaces DOE: Air-Source Heat Pumps DOE: Air-Conditioning DOE: Energy Saver Energy Saver 101 Infographic: Home Cooling Source DOE: Energy Saver Energy Saver 101 Infographic: Home Heating DOE: Energy Saver Thermostats DOE: Energy Saver Purchasing a New Energy- Efficient Central Heating System American Council for an Energy-Efficent Economy: Heating American Council for an Energy-Efficent Economy: Cooling Insulation: DOE: Energy Saver Adding Insulation to an Existing Home Insulation Contractors Association of America (ICAA) Official Buyers Guide Source 1: DOE: Energy Saver Where to Insulate in a Home Green/Alternative Solutions: DOE Energy Saver: Grid-Connected Renewable Energy Systems DOE Energy Saver Solar Water Heaters GeoExchagne Comparing HVAC Systems 6

7 Questions Community Blog Sites NASA Center Communities: National Academies: Partner Companies: Thank You! Presented by: Charlie Hudson Business Development Account Representative, NASA FCU Phone: (301) Ext

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