What is a Home Energy Audit?

The arrival of Autumn brings many things. Football, falling leaves, bonfires, pumpkins and crisp, cool weather. It’s a great time to start thinking about how you can determine the amount of energy your home uses, identify and prioritize any problem areas, and consider making some home improvements so you have control of your energy spend before Old Man Winter arrives.

One of the best first steps to assessing the energy efficiency of your home is a home energy audit. An audit can be done by a professional for the most complete evaluation. However, a thorough do-it-yourself audit can also identify key problem areas without the cost.  In this blog, we will cover the ins and outs of professional home energy audits.

So, what IS a home energy audit, exactly?  It’s a thorough, room-by-room examination of your home, pinpointing energy inefficiencies and providing an illustration of your home’s energy use.  Making upgrades based on the results can not only save you money, but also help keep your home more comfortable all year long.

Professional Home Energy Audits

Energy auditors are incredibly thorough, not only examining each room with special tools and tests, but often include evaluating past utility bills.  You can expect a professional assessment to include:

  • Blower Door Test – Uses a special fan to depressurize the home to locate leaks
  • Thermographic Scan – Infrared camera detects sources of energy loss based on temperature
  • Insulation Inspection – Evaluates the type of insulation and wall framing type
  • Air Leakage Assessment – Looks for improperly sealed outlets, fixtures, chimney bypasses, recessed lighting, HVAC ducts, doors and windows
  • Wiring – Assesses electrical hazards throughout the residence
  • Water Leakage – Pinpoints water leaks in basements and on the roof
  • Furnace Evaluation – Tests for fuel leaks, and cleanliness of filter and blower
  • Water Heater Assessment – Notates thermostat setting, insulation on tank and piping, and tests draft hood
  • Combustion Appliance Zone Testing – Assesses all fuel fired combustible appliances
  • Duct System and Dryer Venting Inspection – Checks status of ducts for leaks and excess debris
  • Kitchen and Bathroom Moisture and Excess Water Vapor/Flow Rate of Vent Fans – Looks for proper ventilation
  • Door and Window Condensation Range – Evaluates condensation throughout entire house for insufficient sealing
  • Number and Location of Air Register Vents – Ensures sufficient ventilation and checks for leaks and excess debris
  • Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detector Test – Looks for fully functioning detectors
  • Indoor Air Quality – Inspects air to ensure furnace filters and ductwork are unobstructed and working properly
  • Fireplace Inspection – Verifies ventilation is appropriate and with minimal leaks in chimney bypasses
  • Review Thermostat Type and Setting – Assesses efficiency of thermostat and preferred setting

Check out the U.S. Department of Energy’s home energy audit infographic for more details. Click here for a list of professionals recommended by the U.S. Department of Energy who perform home energy audits.

Where Can I Find Energy-Efficient Products?

ENERGY STAR® is a government supported program which provides credible, unbiased information for consumers and businesses on energy efficient products, homes, buildings and plants, so they can make well-informed decisions.  All their certified products can be easily identified by the ENERGY STAR emblem and are guaranteed to save money without sacrificing features or functionality.  

AEP Energy Reward Store is our one-stop online marketplace filled with a variety of energy-saving and connected-home products available exclusively for our valued customers.  It is a simple and convenient way for you to shop for items to make your home more energy efficient while saving you time and money.

You can earn Reward Dollars to use in Reward Store by enrolling on an AEP Energy price plan. One month after your enrollment date, you will start earning Reward Dollars to use towards your purchases in Reward Store.  Simply collect Reward Dollars each month.  Shop AEP Energy Reward Store products.  And redeem your Reward Dollars instantly at checkout.

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