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Are Home Energy Audits Worth It?

Are Home Energy Audits Worth It?

The less energy your home consumes, the more efficient it becomes — and the more money you’ll save on your electricity bill. But how to find out if your house is functioning at peak efficiency? It all starts with a home energy audit.

Swapping out light bulbs for LEDs, purchasing new appliances, or installing dual-pane windows are all important steps toward reducing your home’s energy consumption. However, if you’re making those changes blindly, without data indicating where energy inefficiencies exist, you’re likely not making as big of an impact as you think. An energy audit can pinpoint exactly where to improve your home’s efficiency, and how. Here, we break down why a home energy audit is key to optimum energy efficiency.

How a home energy audit works.

An energy audit is an assessment that examines a house’s energy consumption and identifies measures to improve efficiency. An auditor will inspect your home’s exterior and interior, utilizing advanced technology to establish problem areas. The process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to four hours, depending on your home’s size. Typically, an audit aims to:

  • Measure air leakage. An auditor will assess windows, walls, eaves, even holes where electrical lines run, to see if they are causing leaks in or out of the home.
  • Check insulation levels. An auditor will inspect insulation to ensure it was correctly installed and applied evenly between walls.
  • Identify areas that need to be sealed. An auditor will conduct a blower door test, during which all windows and doors are closed and a blower door machine depressurizes the house. Then an infrared camera is used to see where cold air is leaking into the home.

The audit sources additional information from:

  • Thermographic scans
  • Review of your past utility bills
  • Analysis of building energy consumption data

What a home energy audit can reveal.

Home energy audits are powerful tools for boosting energy efficiency because they prevent you from wasting precious time — and money — addressing the wrong problems. You might think that incandescent bulbs drain the most electricity in the home, but the worst energy hog could actually be the pool pump cycling too frequently. A home energy audit can discover this. It can also offer insight into smaller, lesser common issues that you may have never noticed. The fridge in your garage, for example, uses electricity even when it’s empty and many home appliances continue to consume energy even when not in use. An audit will report this. In short, the data gleaned from an audit is invaluable for strategizing whole-home energy solutions.

Why a home energy audit saves money.

An audit offers a complete and accurate look at how every aspect of how your home uses energy, arming you with essential information to make the right efficiency tweaks. Doing so can ultimately save you up to 30% on your energy bills — this adds up to hundreds of dollars a year. Additionally, if you plan to sell your home, an energy audit can be an asset to increasing your home value. Energy-efficient houses are some of the most sought-after living spaces on the market. Why? A home’s new owners will want to save just as much on energy bills as you do.

When to do a home energy audit.

If you think you may be paying too much on your energy bills, then the best time to schedule an audit is now. However, it’s wise to also consider the seasonality of the region where you live. Electricity bills for homeowners in the Southwest skyrocket during the hot summer months, while those in colder climates see higher costs during the winter. Schedule an audit before extreme temperatures — cold or hot — to give you time to make energy efficiency improvements ahead of the season.

Where to get a home energy audit.

Some local utility companies and government agencies may offer home energy audits. There’s also Curb Energy Monitoring. Curb provides a simple and convenient way to monitor and manage all of your home’s energy consumption. The system gives you real-time data on your home’s energy production and consumption down to each major appliance and zone (or room) in the house. With Curb, you can:

  • Track your home’s energy usage in real time
  • See real-time energy use for major appliances, rooms, and areas
  • Find out which appliances or areas of the home are costing you money
  • Identify and eliminate wasted energy
  • Have solar? Curb optimizes your investment with real-time dollar amounts based on your utility plan.

Schedule Your Home Energy Audit Today

Call Elevation to schedule your home energy audit and see how Elevation can help you.

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