by Dylan Goodman
In December, 2014 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched its new Energy Star Home Advisor, an online tool dedicated to improving energy efficiency for American homeowners. The release came as a part of the EPA’s Energy Efficiency Action Week, a weeklong event in which regional EPA offices hosted events dedicated to increasing awareness about energy use and potential energy efficient upgrades. The entire initiative is designed specifically for homeowners and encourages a do-it-yourself approach to upgrading your home. According to EPA administrator Gina McCarthy, “As we enter the winter months, homeowners can use our new Energy Star Home Advisor to increase energy efficiency and save money while reducing greenhouse gas emissions that fuel climate change.” Their new website, https://www.energystar.gov, allows users to create a custom home energy profile which in turn provides customized feedback to the user. Based on your home’s unique profile, the Energy Star tool recommends prioritized projects to best increase your in-home energy efficiency. Projects range from adding insulation to vulnerable areas to replacing an air filter in your heating or air conditioning unit. Additionally, users are able to create their own list of projects to complete. As your home evolves, so does your energy profile; simply apply the changes in the online tool to stay up to date with your potential home improvement projects. Through the energy star tool, homeowners are able to view the [positive] environmental impacts of their improvements. “When homeowners take advantage of this important tool and increase the energy efficiency of their homes, many families will notice savings on energy bills and improvements in the comfort of their homes.” (Gina McCarthy, EPA) In addition to customized suggestions, users have access to general energy star tips on how to save money and energy during the winter season. According to the EPA, the average homeowner spends $2,000 on heating and cooling per year, a cost that could be cut 10% by simply adding insulation and sealing leaks where necessary. Through the Energy Star Home Advisor, homeowners are able better able to track and improve energy efficiency in their home.
Colaizzi, Jennifer. “EPA Announces New Energy Star Tool for Homeowners to Save Money, Energy This Winter.” United States Environmental Protection Agency. N.p., 08 Dec. 2014.