Naturally, we talk quite a bit on this blog about how to save energy and make sure your home is performing at its highest level so you can cut your monthly cost as well as your dependence on large amounts of resources to keep you comfortable. We’ve also discussed how being aware and knowledgeable is the best first step in realizing these potential savings.

However, each home is different. The size, shape, structure, surrounding climate and environment and age of your home could mean different requirements for energy. It can be difficult to pinpoint the amount of energy (and areas for the largest energy savings) needed for your home.

Luckily, there are some helpful resources out there to assist with this dilemma. First and foremost, knowledgeable professionals like our staff here at BelRed can help you determine the best ways to maximize your home’s performance and let you know exactly how much energy is required to keep you comfortable. There are also a number of resources you can check out yourself online if you want to become a little bit more knowledgeable about your home’s energy situation.

One such resource is the Home Energy Yardstick from Energy Star. True to its name, the Home Energy Yardstick provides a rough measure for your consumption based on a few key factors. The tool calculates an energy score based on some personalized information about you and your home so you can see how you measure up to others when it comes to energy efficiency. The factors used to determine this score include:

  • Your ZIP code;
  • Your home’s square footage;
  • Number of full time home occupants;
  • A list of all the different fuels used in your home (e.g., electricity, natural gas, fuel oil); and
  • Your home’s last 12 months of utility bills

 

It’s very important to remember that the Home Energy Yardstick should not be used as a replacement as a professional home energy audit. If you find, using the Home Energy Yardstick, that your energy usage is perhaps higher than it should be for a home similar to yours, it’s a great idea to contact a professional contractor to perform a comprehensive home energy assessment. These professionals can pinpoint to exact problems your home is having and identify ways to improve the performance and efficiency of every part of your home.

 

Once you and your contractors have identified improvements that can be made and you have the energy use knowledge you need for your home, you can make some smart, targeted decisions to increase your home’s efficiency and comfort.

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