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Home Energy Savings

January 20, 2013 6:33:14 AM PST
Home energy costs can be a major expense, and a lot of us are trying to save a buck these days. But with the cold weather, you can't get around heating your home. So, how can you still save?

John Porterfield (Certified Energy Manager and Building Energy Analyst, Vice President of eZing, Instructor, Department of Energy-funded Weatherization Training Center, City Colleges of Chicago) (www.CCC.edu) and Cheryl Pomeroy (Home Energy Efficiency Instructor and Energy Auditor, President of eZing, Instructor, Department of Energy-funded Weatherization Training Center, City Colleges of Chicago) came into our ABC7 studio to debunk myths.

Tips:

Myth:
Don't turn down your thermostat at night because the temperature will have to recover the next day such that your savings will be lost.

Truth:
The more you set your thermostat back, the more you save. So at night, set your thermostat to the lowest comfortable setting possible to maximize savings.

Fact:
It's often in the places you don't see where energy loss occurs. Virtually every home with forced air has issue in the duct work, such as a leakage. An energy audit and duct leak assessment or test is important before spending big money on improvements. Correcting a duct leakage problem can account for as much as a 20 percent increase in heating and AC efficiency.

Fact and Myth:
Heating cost is the biggest energy cost in most homes in our climate. While this is true, it's important to remember there are many homes where appliances, lighting, and electrical gadgets (also called plug loads) account for more than half of the energy costs - so they are worth proper management as well.

Myth:
For a home to be" healthy," it requires a certain amount of leakage.

Truth:
Leakage and ventilation are not the same things. Homes need to "breathe" to be healthy living environments, but proper ventilation is the solution to healthy homes - not leakage.

Often homeowners ask, isn't a little leakage okay, to vent the house? The answer is no. A tight, fan-ventilated home is a better cost-saver than a leaky home.


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