Monday, January 11, 2010

Our home energy audit

Last week we had our home energy audit through the Center for Energy and Environment, and I'd really been looking forward to it because I wanted to find out why our house feels so cold.

We crank the heat to keep the place feeling warm, which we knew was wasting energy. Did we need new windows? We got our attic insulated last March but didn't feel a noticeable difference.

So Dan, Dan, Tom and Alex came by and went through each room with us, talking about ways to save energy, and a blower door test was done to see how airtight our house was. Turns out our place is pretty darn tight, except for the front door, the mail slot and the back door. Lots of cold air pouring in through those spots, so we need to get weatherstripping kits. Our windows are fine, they just need reconditioning. So, not only will we be saving money, using our existing windows is way more environmentally friendly, obviously! Avoiding waste makes me so happy!

The program is currently available for residents of Audubon, Field Regina Northrop, Fulton, Hawthorne, Kingfield, Logan Park and Longfellow neighborhoods in Minneapolis, so if you're in one of those 'hoods, take advantage of this great learning experience. You go to a short workshop and then your audit is done for only $20. They track your gas and electricity usage for one year prior to and one year after your audit, replace your incandescent bulbs with CFLs, put gap-sealing foam pads around your light switches, install faucet aerators and low-flow showerheads and lots of other helpful things.


  1. Hmmm, I wonder if we have this type of cheap service in Seattle.....

  2. This looks similar: And a whole bunch of info's here

  3. Hi Trashbasher,
    I learned about your informative blog from my friend (your neighbor) Shannon. You & your followers may be interested in a blog written by my Northrop neighbor, Jennifer: I began reading her blog when she wrote about installing rain barrels. Her writing, photos, and topics seem compatible with your efforts. Thank you for your resourcefulness & willingness to share so much good info. —Sue

  4. Sue, thanks so much for letting me know about Jennifer's blog! I'll check it out!

  5. what does it mean to have your windows "reconditioned"? and is your house still cold?

  6. • Insulate the space between the existing window frame and house framing
    • Install new window tracks (jamb liners)
    • Groove out the sides of the existing window sashes to accept the new jamb liners
    • Install new weather-stripping at the top, middle and bottom of existing sashes
    • Replace any loose putty or broken glass.

    And yeah, our house is still cold because we haven't had the reconditioning or door weather-stripping done yet.