As a Bonneville Power Administration Certified Residential Energy Auditor/ Inspector and Commercial Lighting Auditor since 2009, Jim Dustman has contracted with local utilities and private parties to evaluate and administer energy conservation measures in hundreds of residences and commercial buildings in northern Idaho.
Blower doors, duct blasters, digital monometers, hydrometers, light meters, ballast discriminators, along with support from local trade organizations, utility companies, and suppliers, insure that your audit will produce the in depth information you need to make the best choice of energy savings upgrades.
Wise Energy Use
The United States represents about 5% of the world’s population, it controls about 8%of the world’s energy resources, and it consumes 25% of the world’s energy supplies. Energy is a principal commodity of our society, amounting to about 10%of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP). We know that our standard of living can be maintained with less energy, less money, and less environmental damage.
There are two major approaches to the wise use of energy in the future: energy efficiency and energy conservation.
Energy efficiency is the more popular approach and focuses on maximizing the economic benefits of wise energy us. Energy efficiency often results in energy savings, as when you buy a new refrigerator to replace your inefficient old one.
Energy conservation focuses more narrowly on reducing non-renewable energy use and its resulting environmental damage. This approach commonly asks consumers for changes in behavior.
Both approaches share the following benefits:
Efficiency of Use – More efficient homes and home appliances give more comfort, service, and value for each unit of energy.
Energy Security – Wasting less energy allows individuals and communities to become less dependent on energy and less vulnerable to price and supply fluctuations.
Environmental Restoration – Wasting less energy creates less environmental damage.
Sustainable Prosperity – Wasting less energy preserves fossil fuels for future generations.
Residential energy conservation programs typically save 10% to 30% of total household energy consumption by using four main strategies:
Making thermal improvements to building shells.
Replacing older heating systems, cooling systems, lighting, and other energy-using devices with new and efficient equipment.
Repairing or adjusting existing energy-using equipment.
Educating building occupants about energy-efficient practices.
Energy audits are typically the first step in most residential energy conservation programs. What is an energy audit and what does it look like?
Energy auditors visit residential buildings and talk to owners and residents. They inspect, test, and measure to decide what energy-efficient retrofits are practical and cost-effective.
Specific purposes of an energy audit are to:
- Identify the type, size, condition, and rate of energy consumption for each major energy-using device.
- Recommend appropriate energy conservation, operation, and maintenance procedures.
- Project savings expected from energy retrofits.
- Note current and potential health and safety problems and how they may be affected by proposed changes.
- Explain behavioral changes that will reduce energy waste.
- Provide a written record of decision making.
Computerized energy audits help set retrofit priorities by rating the cost-effectiveness of each retrofit, as well as analyzing the entire building retrofit proposal.
An inspection is the last component of a complete audit. Inspection of the work helps ensure that the insulation, air sealing, space conditioning, and baseload retrofits are done properly. Dollar savings and longevity of energy conservation measures are heavily dependent on proper installation.
Business Owners—A commercial lighting audit can show you how to:
- Reduce controllable operating costs
- Leverage incentives to upgrade facility
- Tap into the Green Factor
- Value sustainability
- Reduce carbon footprint
- Environmentally responsible.
The Department of Energy states that electric lighting accounts for nearly 40% of the energy consumed in commercial buildings in the U.S. each year.
That’s why utilities throughout the Pacific Northwest are proactively promoting energy efficient T8 Lighting and making the installation of new lamps and electronic ballasts incredibly affordable via incentives. Some programs offer up to 70% of the project cost for commercial upgrades.
Opt for T8 Lighting and do yourself a big favor:
1) T8 Lighting reduces your energy use by up to 50%.
2) T8 Lighting saves you money on your monthly utility bill
3) T8 Lighting conserves precious natural resources
4) T8 Lighting typically pays for itself in one-to-two years when incentives are factored into the cost
5) Studies have shown that workers are more productive and safer when they have the benefit of a well-lit workplace.