A home energy audit is often the first step in making your home more efficient. An audit can help you assess how much energy your home uses and evaluate what measures you can take to improve efficiency. But remember, audits alone don't save energy. You need to implement the recommended improvements. ENERGY STAR provides extensive information about home improvement projects to enhance energy efficiency, lower utility bills, and increase comfort.
You can perform a simple energy audit yourself, or have a professional energy auditor perform a more thorough audit.
If you have five minutes and your last 12 months of utility bills, use the ENERGY STAR Home Energy Yardstick to compare your home's energy efficiency to similar homes across the country and get recommendations for energy-saving home improvements from ENERGY STAR. You will also need to enter some basic information about your home (such as zip code, age, square footage, and number of occupants). If you don't have your bills, contact your utility for a 12-month summary.
If you are interested in getting specific recommendations for improving the efficiency of your home, consider contacting a professional Home Energy Auditor. A professional auditor can use a variety of techniques and equipment to determine the energy efficiency of your home. Thorough audits often use equipment such as blower doors, which measure the extent of leaks in the building envelope, and infrared cameras, which reveal hard-to-detect areas of air infiltration and missing insulation.
Your first step should be to contact your utility to see if they offer free or discounted energy audits to their customers. If not, you can hire a home energy professional, such as a certified Home Energy Rater, to evaluate your home's energy efficiency.
To find a Home Energy Rater, visit the ENERGY STAR for Homes Partner Locator.
Where available, Home Performance with ENERGY STAR can help you cost-effectively improve your home's energy efficiency. Specially-trained contractors evaluate your home using state-of-the-art equipment, recommend comprehensive improvements that will yield the best results, and help you to get the work done.
Find more information on Home Performance with ENERGY STAR in your area.