Archive for the ‘Energy Efficiency’ Category
March 5th, 2012 by admin
Reliability – CFLs suffer from early-life failures up to 13% of the time and often have significant reduction in lumen output before the halfway point in their life. While EnergyStar has only recently begun to do off the shelf testing for CFLs, LEDs have been subject to random EnergyStar testing since their inception to eliminate the reliability problems that have plagued CFLs.
Versatility – LEDs perform in all environments, including those that were particularly problematic for CFLs – cold climates and frequent power cycling.
Recyclability – Since LEDs do not contain hazardous materials they are significantly easier to recycle than CFLs.
February 28th, 2012 by admin
Efficiency – The current generation of LEDs typically produce 60% more lumens per watt than compact fluorescents (CFLs) on the market today and are improving quickly. Expect LEDs to achieve double the efficiency of CFLs in the next couple of years.
Longevity – LEDs last about 50,000 hours, more than 8 times as long as CFLs.
Safety – LEDs are far more break resistant than CFLs and when they do break you don’t have to worry about human or environmental contamination because LEDs do not contain hazardous materials.
February 16th, 2012 by admin
Lemnis just brought us one step closer to ending the days of the compact fluorescent by introducing the $4.95, 25 watt equivalent, Pharox 200. The bulb is for non-dimming applications, runs on 5 watts, and comes with a one year warranty. Lemnis is also offering higher wattage models, including bulbs designed for dimming, ranging in price from $6.95 – $11.95.
All bulbs are sold exclusively through Pharox-Led.com
February 9th, 2012 by admin
If you haven’t already programmed your thermostat, halfway through a mild winter isn’t a bad time to start. Here are a few things to keep in mind when your thinking about or actually programming your thermostat:
A properly programmed thermostat you can save more than hundreds of dollars (up to 10% of your heating bill) every year in energy costs.
2. For the Unprogrammed
Turning your thermostat up to 90 degrees doesn’t heat your house any faster.
3. Intro to Thermodynamics
The lower the temperature in your house, the slower your house gets colder. So the longer your house remains at a colder temperature, the less energy your house uses, and the more money you save.
And for those of you who want your thermostat to program itself – check out the Nest.
February 7th, 2011 by Clay
The backbone to any home energy audit – a blower door is a powerful fan that mounts into the frame of an exterior door. The fan pulls air out of the house, lowering the air pressure inside. The higher outside air pressure then flows in through all unsealed cracks and openings and the auditor can use a thermal camera to detect air leaks in your home. A calibrated blower door will be able to tell you the overall infiltration rate of a building, while an uncalibrated blower door will only locate leaks. A calibrated test will also allow the auditor to rank the cost effectiveness of different air sealing home improvements.
A blower door test is part of PPL and First Energy home energy efficiency energy audit programs – so what can you do to prepare?
- Shut windows and open interior doors
- Turn down thermostats
- Cover ashes in wood stoves and fireplaces with damp newspapers
- Shut fireplace dampers, fireplace doors, and wood stove air intakes.
Posted in Energy Efficiency
January 31st, 2011 by Clay
If you’re in Senator Anthony Williams’ District (8th) which straddles West Philadelphia and parts of Delaware County then you have an outstanding opportunity to make your home more efficient at no cost. Energy Works Plus is now available to residents in the 8th district that have been denied Keystone HELP loans. Thanks to funding from Drexel University, Energy Works Plus provides residents with a free Energy Audit ($400 value) and up to $1,400 in efficiency improvements. This $1,800 value is available if you live in the following zip codes.
- 19139 - 19023
- 19143 - 19024
- 19104 - 19032
- 19131 - 19036
- 19142 - 19050
- 19153 - 19074
- 19145 - 19076
- 19146 - 19078
January 24th, 2011 by Clay
50%-70% of energy consumed in the average American home is used for heating and cooling. Insulating your home can reduce your heating and cooling load by 20% and increase the comfort of your in both hot and cold weather.
Insulation comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, but all of it will be rated on its thermal resistance (R-value). The higher the R-value the greater the insulation effectiveness. You can install some forms of insulation yourself while others requires a professional contractor.
Types of Insulation
Blankets (batts or rolls) – Made of mineral fiber this form of insulation can be installed by the homeowner or a professional. Cut the batts down to size to fit them into areas.
Blown-in loose fill – Typically installed by a professional, this form of insulation is ideal for wall cavities and unfinished attic floors.
Spray Foam – In the cavities of a new home a professional can apply cellulose and fiberglass fibers in the form of a foam.
Foam Insulation – Applied by a professional using special equipment to meter, mix, and spray the foam into place. Polyisocyanurate and polyurethane foam insulation is produced in two forms: open-cell and closed-cell. Open-celled foam allows water vapor to move through the material more easily than closed-cell foam, but usually has a lower R-value for a given thickness compared to closed-cell foams. So, some closed-cell foams are able to provide a greater R-value where space is limited.
Rigid Insulation – Made from fibrous materials or plastic foams and produced in board-like forms and molded pipe coverings. These provide full coverage with few heat loss paths and are often able to provide a greater R-value where space is limited. Rigid insulation is often used for foundations and as an insulative wall sheathing.
Penn Power, Penelec, and Met-Ed are all currently offering rebates for insulation.
January 12th, 2011 by Clay
If you’re a PPL customer, don’t miss a great chance to save energy and money by increasing your home’s efficiency at a heavy discount. PPL’s Home Assessment Program will pay up to $250 of your home energy audit cost, depending on the type of heating system you have. The rebates are distributed as follows.
- Homes with electric heat receive $250 rebate
- Homes with gas receive $150 rebate
To find a certified PPL Energy Auditor, fill out the form to the right.
January 3rd, 2011 by Clay
In 2011 the average American home will spend well more than $2,000 on home energy; $500 of which can easily be avoided with proven home efficiency upgrades. But the problem isn’t necessarily that you don’t know that you can save, but more specifically where to get started. The complexity of home efficiency can be overwhelming; how do I know whether I should tackle my leaky windows, aging water heater, or drafty attic first? That’s where your local energy auditor comes into play. A home energy auditor will be able to evaluate your home and provide a detailed roadmap for making your home energy efficient. You’ll know which projects will pay for themselves the fastest, which can wait, and learn about a handful more that you didn’t know existed. Fill out the form to the right and find a local energy auditor near you and discover your road to savings.
Posted in Energy Efficiency
December 16th, 2010 by Clay
FirstEnergy owned utilities Penelec, Met-Ed, and Penn Power offer identical residential energy efficiency programs. The rebate structure puts particular emphasis on subsidizing home energy audits and energy audit related home improvements.
Whole Home Energy Audit: $0.30/kWh savings, up to $900
Central Air Conditioner: $150 – $300
Air-Source Heat Pump: up to $400
Geothermal Heat Pump: up to $217/ton
Central Air Conditioner Tune-Up: up to $40
Clothes Washers $75
Room Air Conditioners: $25
Recycling Refrigerator or Freezer: $50
Recycling Air Conditioner: $25
HVAC: View program web site for requirements
New appliances must be ENERGY STAR certified
Clothes Washers: home must have electric water heater to be eligible for incentive
To recycle refrigerators or A/C, appliance must be 10-30 cubic ft., operational, plugged in and cooling at time of pick up. There is a limit of two refrigerators or freezers and two room size air conditioners per household per calendar year.