EFFICIENCY MAINE – HOME ENERGY SAVINGS PROGRAM (HESP), $1,500 WORTH OF INCENTIVES

EFFICIENCY MAINE – HOME ENERGY SAVINGS PROGRAM (HESP), $1,500 WORTH OF INCENTIVES

 

UPDATE: 4/18/15 - with the PUC recent ruling (article here) in March to decrease Efficiency Maine's funding from 60 million to 22 million, this program is in jeopardy of losing integral funding for future incentive programs. In our 5 years of working with Efficiency Maine, this Home Energy Savings Program has been the most effective program to stimulate energy efficient improvements. It allows home owners the ability to do a little bit more than they otherwise would have been able to. 

Efficiency Maine’s Home Energy Savings Program is back...and it’s better than ever! Home owners can now receive up to $1,500 for weatherization solutions installed to their home (air sealing & insulation), or $1,500 for a combination of weatherization and a supplemental or high efficient replacement heating systems.

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Energy Audit, Maine - when you should get one

Energy Audit, Maine - when you should get one

Energy audits can be an extremely vital tool in the weatherization process (air sealing, insulation, heat & hot water system upgrades, etc). Many companies offer different audit packages including thorough audit reports, a one page document stating the vital audit information, discounts on weatherization work, or just a simple walk through. If you aren't certain what an energy audit is, if you think you need an audit, or if you're on the fence about scheduling an audit, then we’ll try to answer some of those questions for you. 

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Wood Skyscrapers? decrease carbon emissions with wood | Rook Energy Solutions

Skyscrapers. These massive buildings span skylines, the amount of steel and concrete needed to construct these goliaths is staggering. What if a new, cleaner material was available? A material that generated far fewer carbon emissions to manufacturer than steel and concrete. A material that was renewable and green. What if that material was wood? 

Michael Green gave a fascinating Ted Talk about constructing 30+ story buildings, and potentially far higher...with wood! Enjoy. 

Nest Thermostat | A smarter Programmable Thermostat

Nest Thermostat | A smarter Programmable Thermostat

Most programmable thermostats are big, bulky, and have too many buttons to deal with. Truly figuring out how to use them can require reading the manual...really, a manual for a thermostat? So what makes the Nest thermostat so great? This sleek and easy to use item is actually quite smart and requires a couple days/weeks of focused USE (not reading a manual), and then you're good to go, because this item learns from you.

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Heating Fuel: Oil vs Natural Gas | T. Boone Pickens TED talk

Heating Fuel: Oil vs Natural Gas | T. Boone Pickens TED talk


T. Boone Pickens discusses America's need to switch from Oil to Natural Gas - creating a bridge fuel to lead lead us away from oil dependence and towards renewable energy. 
The primary heating fuel in Maine is oil. Although transportation is the by far the largest percentage of oil Americans use, it just doesn't make sense to continue to support foreign oil when we do have alternative solutions available. Throughout many communities in the northeast natural gas infrastructure is being expanded and installed, allowing delivery of a cheaper and cleaner fuel to heat our homes. 

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Basement Moisture Management | Poly Ground Cover

Basement Moisture Management | Poly Ground Cover

We hear it all the time, “my basement is wet/damp/musty in the spring and summer – but that’s alright, it’s supposed to be like that. We just run the dehumidifier for 6 months straight and empty it once or twice a day.” When a basement/crawlspace has high moisture, so does the rest of the house. The natural path for air to move throughout a home is up, which means that too is the natural path for moisture. This can lead to condensation on windows, mold/milder on surfaces, mold/mildew in the attic, and overall sub par indoor air quality.

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Foundation Wall Insulation | Closed Cell Spray Foam |Rook Energy Solutions

Foundation Wall Insulation | Closed Cell Spray Foam |Rook Energy Solutions

Closed cell spray foam insulation is the best option for non flat foundation wall surfaces. If your foundation is brick, stone, granite, or a combination of materials, closed cell is the material of choice. This article describes how far down you ideally want to insulate and at what depths. 

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Foundation Wall Insulation | Rigid Board Insulation | Rook Energy Solutions

Foundation Wall Insulation | Rigid Board Insulation | Rook Energy Solutions

8-12″ of concrete, brick, stone, and masonry carries the thermal resistance equivalent to R1 (R Value), or a single pane of glass. So yes, structurally your foundation wall is great, but it provides little to no thermal resistance. Depending on the size of your home, the amount of exposed foundation (above grade) you have, and the amount of heat production you have in the basement, you can save upwards of 5-10% or more on your energy bills; keeping your basement cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. 

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Efficiency Maine Weatherization Specific Loans | Rook Energy | Maine Loans

Efficiency Maine Weatherization Specific Loans | Rook Energy | Maine Loans

Efficiency Maine offers weatherization specific loans for home owners looking to air seal, insulate and/or install heating systems. The goal of these loan programs is to offset the monthly premium by the reduction of energy bills due to the improvement of the homes energy efficiency. The loan programs offered are: PACE, Powersaver, and Efficiency Maine Loan Type 1 and Type 2. 

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How do you heat you Domestic Hot Water?

How do you heat your homes Domestic Hot Water (DHW)? If you’re from the east coast and have an oil boiler, the chance you heat with a Tankless Coil is quite high. Tankless coil systems are very effective at producing extremely hot water; however, it’s one of the most inefficient ways to heat DHW. A simple upgrade to an alternative Hot Water Heater or indirect storage tank could save you 5-15% on your annual fuel bills. 

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Energy Audit - Why you may need one

Energy Audit - Why you may need one

Getting an energy audit done on your property is the first step towards understanding WHERE and HOW MUCH money you can save on energy bills. Most property owners think they have an understanding of where they are wasting energy, but until they receive the evidence from an energy audit it will be difficult to pinpoint those issues. Why? Because energy inefficiencies hardly ever stem from one issue, they stem from multiple issues that affect each other and work together making matters worse – so the only real way to get the most bang for your buck from Weatherization Solutions is to have and energy audit performed that will give you finite solutions to remedy your homes issues.

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Unfinished Basements - How to Insulate

Unfinished Basements - How to Insulate

If you are interested in SAVING MONEY ON ENERGY BILLS, CONSERVING FUEL, and INCREASING THE COMFORT in you property – foundation walls are an important place to start. Most New England homes were not (and many still aren't) built with a thermal or vapor barrier on the exterior of the foundation walls. Not having this barrier allows moisture to enter your basement as well as heat to exit your foundation walls through the concrete. Concrete wicks moisture and has an R-Value of approximately R1 per 8" (stone, brick & masonry fall into this category), so it offers great strength for building but lacks energy efficient characteristics.

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