Home energy efficiency is about using less energy to provide the same level of comfort. This can be achieved through better technology, with products like Energy Star appliances and compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFL), or changes in behavior such as using a programmable thermostat. More efficient energy use means lower utility bills, less dependency on fossil fuels, and reduction of pollution.
Purchasing Energy Star appliances, equipment and lighting can cut energy costs by up to 30%. No-cost energy savers include turning off electronics and unplugging chargers when not in use, lowering the temperature on your water heater to 120 degrees and washing clothes in cold water. When you make energy efficiency part of your everyday activities you are saving money, reducing energy demand and creating fewer greenhouse gases.
In Maryland, as much as half of home energy goes to heating and cooling. Duct sealing, improved insulation, and plugging leaks from windows, doors, attics and crawl spaces are very effective and affordable ways to improve the efficiency of your home.
A home energy audit is a great opportunity to find ways to save energy and money. The results should include a list of projects for a homeowner to prioritize and see if and when the improvements will pay for themselves in reduced energy costs.
Retrofit Baltimore offers a limited-timed grant to provide free home energy upgrade services for low and moderate-income households. These improvements can lower energy bills, while making a house safer, healthier and more energy efficient. An energy retrofit is a series of custom, energy-saving home improvements. In the Retrofit Baltimore program, all of the work is performed by a vetted and screened contractor. The money available for this program is limited and homeowners apply on a first-come-first-served basis. As an example, a household size of 1 with a maximum annual income of $52,600 is eligible to be considered for the grant. It is NOT limited to Baltimore City only. For more information, visit the retrofitbaltimore.org website.
Please click here for our list of Home Energy Tips which has a list of No-Cost Options, Low-Cost Options, and Strategic Savings.
Even more ideas can be found on our Live Green Energy Card. It has different categories of Simply Green, Solidly Green and Seriously Green options.
For information about home energy efficiency programs in Maryland, see below: