Education

Resource Table at C3 Leader Anthony Lindsay's Weatherization Workshop

Resources

Here are a few resources regarding weatherizing specific aspects of the home.

Air Sealing and Ventilation

Windows

Insulation

Lighting and Appliances

Heating Equipment

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Home Energy Quiz

Take a few minutes to mark true or false next to each statement.  This quiz is also located in the Hands-On Guide.

1. Setting the thermostat too low in winter when I leave the house will cancel out my energy savings because of the extra energy required to bring the room’s temperature back to a comfortable level later.

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2. Turning lights on/off causes an electric surge that will cancel out energy savings from turning the lights off.

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3. It is better to use an appliance until it fails, rather than purchase a more efficient appliance before the old one fails.

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4. A ceiling fan cools air in the house, so I should leave it on when I am not at home.

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5. Windows and doors are the primary source of air leakage in homes and apartments.

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6. Replacing windows gives me the greatest energy savings per dollar spent.

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7. More attic ventilation is better. It prevents mold in the attic and cools living space in summer.

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8. Duct leakage in attics, vented crawl spaces, or attached garages is a rare problem of minor consequence.

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Answers

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All of the statements are energy myths and are false!

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1. Lowering the thermostat temperature, to say, 58 degrees, while asleep or away at work saves heating energy. Raising the temperature back to comfort levels makes the furnace or boiler run longer and more efficiently (reducing efficiency losses of cycling the equipment on & off). In other words, turning down the thermostat DOES save energy and money.

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2. While technically true, turning lights off for even a few minutes is best.

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3. Visit the Energy Star website before replacing failed appliances! Most refrigerators older than 1993 are so inefficient that replacing them before they fail is worthwhile. You might get paid to get rid of that old refrigerator in your basement.

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4. A ceiling fan cannot lower air temperature. In fact, the fan motor increases room temperature slightly. Like any fan, it simply moves air. However, people in the path of the air flow feel cooler because it carries away body heat.

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5. Because one feels cold drafts at windows and doors it seems that they are major culprits. However, the biggest leaks are elsewhere (see pie chart on page 2). We are simply unaware of warm air escaping through most leaks, such as through the attic.

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6. Salesmen often misinform people about the energy savings of replacement windows. They have a 70-90 year payback. Repairing windows and adding low-e storms to old windows are more cost-effective measures.

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7. Preventing moisture from entering the attic by air sealing the floor is the key to preventing condensation and mold in the attic. A well air-sealed and insulated attic floor is also key to keeping the living space below cool in summer (and warm in winter). The effect of adding more vents to an already vented attic is trivial.

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8. Ducts in attics, vented crawl spaces, and attached garages can be a major source of air leakage and energy loss. Unsealed joints, disconnected ducts, and gaps between duct boots and finished surfaces are major leak problems. Leaky ducts may also contribute to ice dams, condensation problems, and carbon monoxide entry into the house from a garage.