|Ductless Heat Pumps
||Ductless heat pumps, sometimes called mini-split heat pumps, move warm or cool air without needing ductwork. These heat pumps are an efficient option for homes with baseboard heating.|
Make it efficient: a good measure of efficiency for ductless heat pumps is a Heating Season Performance Factor (HSPF) rating. Aim for a rating of 10.0 or higher. You can also search for efficient models in the AHRI Directory .
|Air-sourced Ducted Heat Pumps
||Air-sourced ducted heat pumps move air around existing ductwork, but use significantly less energy than furnaces. |
Make it efficient: a good measure of efficiency for heat pumps is a Heating Season Performance Factor (HSPF) rating. Aim for a rating of 9.5 or higher.
air using electricity, natural gas, or other fuel, and distribute the heated
air throughout a home using ductwork. Upgrading to an efficient furnace
can save energy and money. |
Make it efficient: A furnace is rated
by its Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) score. The AFUE
measures how efficiently a furnace uses its fuel. For example, an AFUE of 95
percent means that 95 percent of the energy in the furnace's fuel becomes heat
for the home (the other 5 percent escapes up the chimney or elsewhere).
||An efficient heat pump or furnace will work best if your ductwork is properly sealed and insulated, especially where ducts are in unheated spaces like
attics and crawlspaces.|
Make it efficient: your installer should meet Bonneville Power Administration's Prescriptive Duct Sealing Specifications .
||Programmable thermostats let you create a pre-set schedule, such as turning your heat down when you are asleep or away from home. "Smart" programmable thermostats can be controlled remotely by smart phone, and sense when the house is unoccupied.|
Make it efficient: the U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat to 68 degrees in the winter -- and lower when you go to sleep. In the summer, set your cooling to 78 degrees.
|Direct Vent Gas Fireplaces
||Direct vent gas fireplaces draw combustion air from the outdoors and vent directly through a wall without a masonry chimney. They can circulate heated air and be controlled by a thermostat. They are an energy efficient alternative to open fireplaces, which draw room air up the chimney - often removing more heat from the house than they produce.|
Make it efficient: look for a Canadian EnerGuide efficiency rating of 70 percent or higher. The
manufacturer's manual should list the number, labeled as "CSA
P.4.1-02" or just "P4." The Energy Trust of Oregon also publishes a list of high-efficiency
fireplaces if you need a starting point to find an efficient model.
|Wood & Pellet Stoves
||Wood and pellet stoves use renewable resources to produce heat. |
Make it efficient: high-efficiency stoves burn cleaner. Look for a stove with a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency certification sticker. You can also search for efficient models on the EPA's website .
||Insulation saves energy and improves comfort, keeping your home warm in the winter and cooler in the summer. Home performance contractors can assess your home and recommend cost-effective insulation and air leak sealing.|
Make it efficient: insulation is assigned an R-value, which is a measure of thickness. The higher the R-value, the better! Aim for a minimum R-38 for attics, R-30 for floors, and R-21 for walls.
||Circulating fans, include ceiling fans, oscillating fans, or whole-house fans can help cool your home or business without using a lot of energy. Remember to turn fans off when you leave the room - fans cool people, not rooms.|
Make it efficient:
look for the ENERGY STAR
label. ENERGY STAR-rated fans are guaranteed to be high-quality and energy-efficient.
|Heat or Energy Recovery Ventilation
||Heat recovery ventilation (HRV) and energy recovery ventilation (ERV) systems provide balanced ventilation for homes. In a typical installation, stale air is removed from living spaces, passing through a central unit that reclaims the heat from the exhaust air, and then warms, filters, and humidifies the incoming fresh air. Many systems operate continuously, quietly, and efficiently while maintaining proper ventilation.|
Make it efficient: look for a model tested, rated, and certified through the Home Ventilating
Institute . Aim for a maximum Energy Use Index of 1.10 at the lowest fan speed. EUI is calculated by dividing the system's power consumption by the net supply of air delivered.