Is it Time for a Home Energy Audit?
While we’re all busy making merry this season, chances are we’re also all consuming a lot of energy. If you’ve already got your Christmas lights up, your tree plugged in, and the heating cranked up in preparation for hosting friends and family, you’re likely consuming a lot of energy. It may be the perfect time for an energy audit.
Why Do You Need An Energy Audit?
An energy audit can help tell you where you waste energy. If you find your electricity bills are consistently high, and not just through the holidays, you could be missing opportunities to lower your energy consumption and your energy bill.
While California’s 2020 mandate for solar energy is looming on the horizon, many homes across the state and nation are still wasting massive amounts of energy. This could be due to unnecessary electricity use from too many appliances being plugged in to insufficient insulation to poor heating and cooling efficiency. Whether you have a newer home or an older home, you should perform an energy audit.
Energy Audit Steps Towards Identifying Energy Waste
According to the Department of Energy, 48% of energy use is from heating and cooling systems and another 18% from water heaters. What this means is your energy audit should be examining the devices you use to heat and cool your home including:
- Checking heating and cooling appliances and replacing these with energy efficient units
- Performing an energy audit on hot water use
- Looking for spaces around doors and windows where you might be leaking air
- Installing low flow showerheads and energy efficient dishwashing and washing machines
Another culprit for energy waste is poor insulation and sealing. If you discover in your energy audit that your home is poorly insulated and sealed, you could be overpaying by thousands of dollars per year in energy bills. To perform an energy audit on insulation, try the following:
- Look for gaps and leaks in insulation and sealing from gaps in your doorways, floors, electrical outlets, faucets and other fixtures
- Check to see if you have adequate insulation in your attic or if there are gaps, especially around chimneys, windows, and ducts that could be filled in as a result of your energy audit
- Perform an energy audit on your floors to determine if you’ve got properly insulated crawl spaces to prevent heat loss in your floors
And finally, perform an energy audit on your electricity consumption. Are you leaving lights on all day when you’re not home? Do you have inefficient appliances? All of these could contribute to preventable energy waste. Try the following steps:
- Unplug appliances that don’t always need to be plugged in. You’re not using your toaster 99% of the time, so it’s safe to say appliances such as that can be unplugged
- Toss out appliances that no longer work but you keep plugged in anyways
- Use sleep functions on your computers, laptops, and televisions when they’re not in use or when you fall asleep before turning one of those items off
- Use energy efficient light bulbs
- Weigh the results of your energy audit against your ability to save with solar power
Explore Converting Your Home to Solar Power
Solar power is a clean, renewable source of energy that can significantly reduce energy waste and reduce your electricity bills. It can also be a great source of tax rebates and income from selling energy credits. To find out if you’re a good candidate for solar power, contact our experts today at (951) 678-7733 or try our handy cost calculator tool.