All Energy-Expert Blogs (274)

Work with Nature to Keep Your House Cool in Summer

The primary goal in cooling is to avoid experiencing heat. Keep the sun out, let cool breezes in, turn off your lights and appliances, and seek the coolest spot indoors or out. The summer sun is a potent heat source; it affects your house primarily on

  • the east side in the…

Added by Diane Chojnowski on May 19, 2014 at 6:56am — No Comments

Case Study: Living off the Sun

From Alison Wiley, Diamond-Cut Life

One year into having our rooftop solar panels installed here in Portland Oregon, we’re living off the sun. That’s to say, we producing slightly more…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on May 12, 2014 at 6:30am — No Comments

Financial Incentives

Even though most investments in energy efficiency pay for themselves many times over, finding the cash to do it isn't always easy. This problem is addressed by rebates provided by energy companies and others, creative mortgage products provided by banks, tax credits provided by state and federal government, and even cash incentives for scrapping…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on May 5, 2014 at 6:30am — No Comments

Crawl Spaces

If your house has a raised floor and no basement, the crawl space is the area between the floor framing and the ground below. This space can be either vented (the most co…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on April 28, 2014 at 5:30am — No Comments

Washing Dishes: By Machine or by Hand?

Studies have found that a new, energy-efficient dishwasher saves significant amounts of both water and energy compared to hand dishwashing. So if your dishwasher is more than seven to ten years old, you’ll probably want to consider buying a new one. Not only can a new dishwasher save water and energy, but some of them are exceptionally quiet.…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on April 21, 2014 at 7:13am — No Comments

Do Today or Do Later?

Planning projects you can do today:

    Make an appointment with a home performance assessor.

    Start a Homeowner’s Manual for your home.

    Try out some no-budget changes that make better use of space and energy.

Planning projects that will take more time:

    Carefully consider your goals for this project.



Added by Diane Chojnowski on April 15, 2014 at 5:00pm — No Comments

Keeping food cold can use a lot of energy

Keeping food cold can use a lot of energy. Here’s another area where you need to make careful decisions.…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on April 10, 2014 at 6:30am — No Comments

Energy Saving Upgrades For Renters

Renters have a unique situation when it comes to energy savings. Without being able to make permanent changes to their dwellings it can be difficult to capitalize on energy-saving improvements. However, there are still plenty of opportunities for renters to go green without making any lasting changes to a property.…


Added by Paul Batistelli on April 8, 2014 at 10:30am — No Comments

Going Green and Conserving Water in Your Backyard

In recent years the go green initiative has been gaining ground into mainstream popularity. More and more people are making attempts at “going green” whether it is by carpooling to work or upgrading appliances at home to save on utility bills. While you think of all the energy vampires and electronics that you use every day in your home, you may not think of best practices to conserve water and energy in your backyard. Here are some options and tips for going green in your…


Added by Michael Juba on March 31, 2014 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Tips to Renovate Your Home and Save Energy

Springtime is a perfect opportunity for fixing up your home to make it look better and to save energy while you’re at it. There are many different and simple DIY home renovations that you can do which can improve the look of your home, while at the same time helping you lessen your energy…


Added by Naomi Broderick on March 26, 2014 at 10:00am — No Comments

Top 8 Things You Didn’t Know About Daylight Saving Time

8. This month, people across the country set their clocks forward an hour, marking the start to Daylight Saving Time. But it hasn’t always happened on the second Sunday in March. The Energy Policy Act of 2005, which was implemented in 2007, added four weeks to Daylight Saving Time by changing it to start on the second Sunday in March and end on the first Sunday in…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on March 21, 2014 at 7:00am — No Comments

Choose the Right Advanced Power Strip

Remember the days when your home had only one TV and a computer was something you only needed at work?…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on March 13, 2014 at 6:33am — No Comments

Portable Heaters

Small space heaters are typically used when the main heating system is inadequate or when central heating is too costly to install or operate. In some cases, small space heaters can be less expensive to use if you only want to heat one room or supplement inadequate heating in one room. They can also boost the temperature of rooms used by individuals who are sensitive to cold,…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on March 5, 2014 at 5:47pm — No Comments

#AskEnergySaver about Insulation

One of the most cost-effective ways to improve your home's comfort is to add insulation to your attic. Learn more about insulation. | Photo courtesy of Dennis Schroeder, National Renewable Energy Lab.…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on February 26, 2014 at 7:19am — No Comments

Savings Project: How to Weatherstrip Double-Hung (or Sash) Windows

You can use weatherstripping in your home to seal air leaks around movable joints, such as windows or doors. To determine how much weatherstripping you will need, add the perimeters of all…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on February 19, 2014 at 7:00am — 1 Comment


You can save money on your heating and cooling bills by simply resetting your thermostat when you are asleep or away from home. You can do this automatically without sacrificing comfort by installing an automatic setback or programmable thermostat.

Using a programmable thermostat, you can adjust the times you turn on the heating or air-conditioning according to…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on February 12, 2014 at 6:44am — No Comments

Considering Solar For Your Home? One Milwaukee Homeowner Shares Her Experience

When Paula Papanek, PhD and Associate Professor at Marquette University, decided to install solar panels on the roof of her Milwaukee home – it was with a clear goal in mind. “I want to be energy neutral by the time I retire,” she explained. Paula’s on a personal quest to substantially decrease her home energy costs over the next decade. Ultimately she hopes to…


Added by Diane Chojnowski on February 5, 2014 at 6:33am — 1 Comment

Energy Saver 101 Infographic: Home Heating

This infographic originally appeared on | Infographic by Sarah Gerrity, Energy Department.

Added by Diane Chojnowski on January 24, 2014 at 5:58am — No Comments

DOE Challenge Home Spotlight in Illinois—Q&A with Brandon Weiss

While attending the 2013 Solar Decathlon in southern California, we also had the pleasure of attending DOE’s Housing Innovation Awards ceremony. Impressed by the various builders committed to…


Added by Home Energy Saver on January 6, 2014 at 8:30am — No Comments

Understanding Energy-Efficient Window Ratings

High-performance windows come in a variety of designs and offer multiple benefits to consumers. The term “energy-efficient” has become an integral part of the homebuilding industry but it’s a term that can be confusing to those who don’t do enough research on either new or replacement windows.

What are the benefits of energy-efficient windows?

High-performance windows substantially reduce…


Added by Home Energy Saver on December 30, 2013 at 8:30am — No Comments

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