Today, October 5th, is the second annual Energy Efficiency Day! Individuals, companies, cities, and a long list of nonprofit advocacy organizations are coming together on social media to discuss the benefits of energy efficiency, and how it can help save energy and money in homes, at work, and in buildings of all sizes across the nation.
The ultimate goal is to educate and promote an open dialogue around how you, as a homeowner or renter, can be more healthy, safe, and efficient in your everyday life.
How energy efficiency and home performance can help you
It’s no surprise that, with all the hustle and bustle of life, being efficient can fall to the wayside. However, paying attention to your home’s performance and efficiency is not only a matter of saving energy and money; it’s also a matter of your family’s health. Because people spend a significant amount of their time in their homes, the health of the home is intimately connected to the health of its occupants.
It’s scary to think about, but a home could contain invisible asthma and health triggers, such as dust mites and other air particles. You may not be able to see them, but these irritants could live in your carpets, bedding, stuffed animals, or even be floating in your home’s air. In an earlier blog post, we discussed the invisible threats that could be lurking in your home and how you can start combating them today. However, to take it a step further, you may want to consider getting an energy audit, also known as giving your home a check-up, and making the recommended upgrades.
According to a National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) December 2016 report, energy efficiency upgrades (e.g., adding insulation, air sealing, making HVAC system improvements, and installing exhaust ventilation) greatly improved occupant comfort. Residents in four of the six homes studied for the report also experienced fewer colds, sinus infections, or headaches. Three of the six studies showed improved asthma and respiratory wheeze symptoms for participating residents. Proof that pinpointing issues and fixing them could help with your family’s health.
Find a BPI GoldStar Contractor or a BPI Healthy Home Evaluator in your area to get your home checked out today.
How to pay for energy upgrades
The good news about energy audits and upgrades is that many states and utilities across the country offer incentives and rebates to help you make your home healthier, safer, more comfortable and efficient. Check out the DSIRE website to see if your state offers energy audit or upgrade incentives, rebates, or tax credits. There are also loan programs that will fund energy efficiency upgrades if no rebates and incentives are available.