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Old 01-10-19, 10:48 AM   #14
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Ok so if you're going to get an energy audit, do it before you start improving the place. Gather some past utility bill data and get a baseline "before" survey completed. That way you can quantify where the home is and what improvements will yield the easy savings. After the first results and associated savings show up, it becomes easier to justify the more labor intensive and or costly projects.

Main idea is like this: the low hanging fruit should be handled first. Usually this consists of sealing big air and heat leaks. Next comes improving heat retention of the envelope. It's a path of diminishing returns, so a long term plan is essential. Try not to do something now that would need to be undone later to improve upon. This first phase of improving the heat envelope is the most cost effective to implement.

After the home envelope is improved, suddenly the existing climate control equipment doesn't cost quite as much to do its job. At that point, the economics have changed for the better, so it becomes more difficult to justify spending x thousand dollars on an alternative to the existing system. I tend to agree with previous comments: a cold climate air source unit uses much less electric bill than electric baseboard strips to provide equal heating performance. How much less depends on a whole lot of details.
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