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Friday, September 05, 2014


Saving the PowerSaving the Power

Saving the Power


Our neighbors put in solar panels.  It’s a big thing here in our area.  My sister was part of a trial program in Orange County, CA. Therefore, they didn’t pay for any of it!  She’s loving being off the grid.  Both my sister and our neighbors have large 2-story homes.  


Adam and Sam also have a large 2-story and it’s costing a fortune to keep cool. All of our family are those annoying people who actually get the a/c units checked and serviced once a year to make sure nothing’s broken.  It’s expensive enough without finding out something’s wrong with our units that’s having us use even more electricity!


Recently, Steve and I even took advantage of having a company come out and do and energy evaluation of our home.  We had decided we weren’t spending the $10 grand to put the solar panels on our roof, but we didn’t want to be paying through the nose to sweat either.


Remember, Steve is always claiming I can enjoy the fans but the thermostat has to stay at 82 during the day and then he drops it down to 78 at night “for my sleeping comfort”.  There’s an oxymoron if ever I heard one.


For some reason, while I ranted about this ad nauseum in the great OC-it doesn’t bother me as much here.  I’m pretty sure that the reason is due to the 110+ outside.  Hey, suddenly after letting Lucky out to do her business and then I walk back in-82 is practically chilly!


Back to the audit-the outcome was that while we had done a lot on our own to “plug up” the escaping air-we had a long way to go.  It seems that all those canned lights in most of the rooms and the fancy-schmancy surround sound equipment were using a lot of energy!  We also had the microwave/fan, the dryer vents (which they cleaned for us), the water heater itself and the various air ducts/returns and bathroom fans all letting our a/c dollars float across the desert sky!


Then there was the insulation.  The total estimate of getting everything “sealed” up:  $4,000.


We could be half-way to those solar panels!  About $500 would be covered with rebates from our local electric company.  And they also paid the first $200 of $299 for the audit.


When all was said and done, we only did ½ the work.  Couldn’t afford the rest.  But even with that the estimated savings would be ¼ ton.  Turned out they did such a good job that the “after” test showed they got it to ½ ton of air savings.


I’m not a technical person-but I’m thinking that this is a good thing.  Our clothes are getting dryer faster.  The a/c unit isn’t going on as frequently and it’s nice to know that we’re hopefully not going to have to dust as much.


I hate dusting. 


On a completely different note-this past week had my parents celebrating their 58th anniversary.  We couldn’t be there and I know they won’t see this, but it’s wonderful to know that longevity runs in the family.

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