Winter is coming, and Columbia residents can take steps now to stay warmer and save on utility bills when cold temperatures hit. Because outdoor winter temperatures can be much lower than our indoor thermostat setpoints, our region typically experiences about three times more heating degree days than cooling degree days in a given year.*
Lots of energy is needed to keep our homes comfortable when it is cold outside. One of the most cost-effective steps homeowners can take is to make sure their home is air sealed and insulated properly. Many of the older homes in Columbia have very poor attic insulation, resulting in significant heat loss and high utility bills. In fact, my townhouse that was built in the late 1960s had no insulation at all in parts of the attic, so one of the first improvements I made was to add insulation — and the benefits have been significant in terms of improved comfort and reduced energy consumption.
To help offset the costs of these improvements, Baltimore Gas and Electric (BGE) offers incentives for sealing and insulating your home through the Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® Program. Once a Home Performance Energy Audit has been completed, BGE will provide a rebate of up to 50 percent of improvement cost ($2,000 maximum) for air sealing and insulation measures. These cost-effective and simple upgrades to your home will provide benefits this winter and all year round.
For more information on BGE’s rebate programs, visit BGESmartEnergy.com/Residential.
For more information about Seal and Insulate with ENERGY STAR, visit EnergyStar.gov.
* A degree day is a measure of heating or cooling load based on the differential between outdoor temperatures and a typical indoor thermostat setpoint.
-Article by Jeremy Scharfenberg