TOM: Well, today more than ever there are lots of reasons to try and reduce your energy use at home. You’ll save money on those utility bills every month and you’ll help the environment by reducing your carbon footprint. An energy auditor can help you target specific areas for improvement. With tips on how to get one done in your house is our pal Kevin O’Connor from This Old House.
KEVIN: Hi, Tom. Great to be here.
TOM: Now this is a fantastic service, if you know what to do.
KEVIN: Yeah, there are a lot of good reasons to do an energy audit these days and here’s how it works. An energy audit will often start with a blower door test that’s going to pressurize or depressurize your house and then the auditor will take some special tools, including a nanometer, an infrared thermal camera or something as simple as a smoke pencil to identify problems with air sealing and gaps in your insulation. A comprehensive audit is also going to include a combustion analysis for your mechanical systems and then will give you a report which will identify specific areas to improve so you know exactly what to do.
TOM: Makes a lot of sense. This way you know exactly where to spend your efforts.
Now, what does an energy audit cost? Is it expensive?
KEVIN: Well, it depends and the first place you should start is with the utilities because they may actually offer some of the services for free. If you do end up hiring an independent energy auditor, it could cost you about $500. But again, you may qualify for some rebates from the utilities or even a tax credit from the government. So if you want to see a video on a comprehensive energy audit, you can go to ThisOldHouse.com.
TOM: Great tip. Kevin O’Connor from This Old House, thanks for stopping by The Money Pit.
KEVIN: My pleasure. Always good to be here.
LESLIE: And what a great way that is to know exactly for sure where you’ve got drafts or gaps in your home because, Tom, I think far too often people just guess and then they’re getting it wrong.
TOM: Well, I think they do and they end up wasting a lot of money that could be placed a little more strategically and more accurately and really achieve those lower energy bills.
LESLIE: And you can catch more of Kevin and the entire team at This Old House when you watch episodes of the current project on your local PBS station.
TOM: And This Old House is brought to you by Cub Cadet. Cub Cadet – you can’t get any better.