Note: To power your home with renewable energy, see the most recent Subscription Community Solar update and 100% Renewable Electricity update.
By Gerri Wiley, HeatSmart volunteer and Energy Navigator
Today I am also sharing a way for you to level up your energy literacy. There are still a few spaces open in Get Your Greenback Tompkins' Energy Navigator Program! To learn more, visit their website.
I remain vigilant in trying to provide more than one option for you that meets my criteria of 'price no more than 2 cents/kWh over NYSEG's rate' (yet is WAY cleaner), good customer service, zero or very few customer complaints, and purchases RECs from New York State renewable electricity sources. Losing Clearview's fixed low rate was a sad experience. At least we have one ESCO on the list...ECA Renewable. It isn't a fixed price, but it meets all of my criteria, including zero customer complaints to the PSC...That's something about which to be proud!
All is chuggin' along well with Subscription Community Solar. If you don't have your own panels and haven't signed up as yet, you may want to sign up now while solar panels are free of snow and the days are getting longer! Subscription Solar is a can't lose proposition. Also, not too long from now, there will be consolidated billing, with all data on your utility bill, ending the need for two payments.
If there's one thing the cold winter here in New York is telling us, it is that a well-insulated home is your best protection against winter weather damage and high energy bills. Ice dams on roofs can cause tremendous damage, water infiltration, and mold. Here is a resource for some steps you can take to protect your roof, the most important step of all is ensuring that your roof is properly insulated and ventilated.
Fortunately, there's never been a better time to enroll with HeatSmart and get a free assessment for an insulation upgrade! Until June, income-qualified households are eligible for grants to pay for insulation and air sealing. If you're in a higher earning category, ask us whether the Comfort Home program might be right for you.
It's not too late to be a part of the Heat Pump Demonstration Pilot Study now being conducted by NYSERDA. There has been tremendous interest in this short-term opportunity, so don't delay! Scroll down to see some real examples of heat pump systems installed with grant money through the study. Join our Heat Pump Pilot Study webinar on March 10 at noon to learn more.
Heat Pump Pilot Study Examples
Register for an upcoming webinar on clean heating and cooling
Weds, March 10 from noon-1pm :: Register Now
Heat Pump Pilot Study
NYSERDA is conducting a Heat Pump Pilot Study to learn how heat pumps can benefit low-to-moderate income households in NY. Join the HeatSmart team to learn if you're a good candidate for this short term opportunity that will provide deeply discounted heat pumps to low-to-moderate income households that are heating with any fuel except gas.
Weds, March 24 from 7-8pm :: Register Now
Getting the Most out of Your Heat Pump System
Congratulations! You just got a new heat pump system (or you are about to get one)! This webinar will go over how to use your system to maximize comfort and efficiency. We will also go over best practices for maintenance.
Weds, April 14 from noon-1pm :: Register Now
Join us to learn about federal tax credits for heat pumps and other clean energy technologies. A basic overview of heat pumps will also be provided.
Weds, April 28 from 7-8pm :: Register Now
Campaign for Clean Heat
Join the HeatSmart team to learn about the movement for clean heat at the local level, the state level and the national level. #HeatPumpsNotPipelines
Become an Energy Navigator!
Those icicles hanging from your house may look beautiful, but you'll want to be on the look out for ice dams that can form on the edge of the roofline.
Ice dams are formed when attic heat warms the roof and melts the snow. Melted snow flows to the edge of the roof, where it freezes again. As snow continues to melt, water can accumulate behind the layer of ice that forms and can back up underneath roof shingles and leak into the attic space.
This Old House compiled some great steps you can take to protect your roof, and the rest of your home, and the most important steps include ensuring that your roof is properly insulated and ventilated. This is because the number one problem is undesirable attic heat. Too little insulation, too little ventilation, or a combination of the two create the conditions for ice dams.
Learn more in this resourceful article from This Old House:
How to Get Rid of Ice Dams
Visit our incentives page for information about home weatherproofing incentives. And view our webinar archive with informative topics such as the "ABCs of Home Performance".