Going green is a popular trend these days, and by going green you are helping conserve our natural resources. Fortunately for homeowners, the by-product of conserving natural resources is often a reduction in monthly utility bills. The home services industry (i.e. heating & cooling and plumbing) offers products on the market today that are more efficient than ever. By choosing these energy efficient products you can save money and “go green” without losing anything in home comfort.
“The term ‘energy efficiency’ is heard a lot these days and what it means to homeowners is that they can get the same amount of comfort, or hot water, while using less energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” states Lee Hill, Vice-President of Weather Master, a local heating, cooling and plumbing company. According to experts energy efficient choices can save families about one-third of their energy bill with similar savings of greenhouse gas emissions – without sacrificing features, style or comfort. This allows you save money in lower utility costs while doing something good for the environment.
On average 50% of your home energy usage goes to heating and cooling your home. Heating and cooling systems of today have increased in efficiency over just the last 10 years. By replacing older equipment you can realize great energy savings.
AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) is the rating system for heating systems. The higher the percentage, the more efficient a system is.
The minimum efficiency allowed by the government is an 80% AFUE. What this rating means is that 80% of the energy output used goes to heating your home and 20% goes out the chimney as waste. Trane®, a leading heating and cooling manufacturer, offers systems with efficiencies as high as 96.7% AFUE. With a high efficiency system very little energy is wasted.
The same applies to air conditioning systems. These systems are rated by S.E.E.R. (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating). Just like heating systems, the higher the S.E.E.R. the more efficient the system is.
The government standard is 13 S.E.E.R. If you have an old 10 S.E.E.R. system in your home and upgrade to a 16 S.E.E.R. system you will see savings of up to 50%. These savings will easily help offset the initial cost of your new system.
The plumbing industry has also made great strides in providing “green” energy-efficient products for homeowners. A tankless water heater is a product that accomplishes the goals of both resource conservation and money savings for homeowners.
Homeowners can conserve two natural resource, water and energy, by switching from a traditional water heater to a tankless water heater. A traditional water heater works by constantly heating and reheating the water in your tank. A tankless water heater only heats water as it is needed. Because it does not store water, but rather heats water instantly when needed, you will not be paying to constantly heat the same water over and over again. Also, because the hot water is instant there is no need to run the tap waiting for the warm water, which results in wasted water.
Going green may be a popular trend, but is quickly becoming a way of life as homeowners look for ways to not only conserve our natural resources but also save money in this struggling economy. The heating, cooling and plumbing industries recognize these issues and have products that are helping homeowners address them. Conservation of natural resources makes good sense, too (dollars and cents)!