What to Know Before Performing a Home Energy Audit
Each home is unique, but space heating and air conditioning are often responsible for over 50% of the total energy consumption. Therefore, if you want to achieve the highest dollar savings, you should focus on making these systems more efficient. Water heating is also a considerable expense, which represents around 20% of energy consumption in some cases.
While a professional energy audit is more accurate, it will cost you anywhere from $250 – $500 depending on the size of your place. If you do it yourself, you will find many opportunities to save energy on your own. This article provides several tips to conduct an amateur energy audit, based on recommendations from the US Department of Energy (US DOE).
- The US DOE recommends focusing on the simplest issues first, since these tend to have a quick payback period.
- Consider that energy saving opportunities may also be found in new homes. Don’t assume a building is already efficient just because it’s new.
Keep a Checklist and Examine Your Electric Bill
A home energy audit is simpler if you make a list to keep track of the areas already inspected and the problems found. Keep a record of your electricity bills and compare monthly consumption for consecutive years. Comparisons within the same year can be misleading, since power consumption depends on seasonal factors. For example, electricity use tends to be higher in summer, since many space heating systems used in winter burn gas.
If you live in a deregulated energy market like Texas, you have the power to choose your electricity provider. Energy rates are competitive, so shop electricity deals often.
Let’s begin your Home Energy Audit: