Thursday, September 29, 2005

EnergyCheck, EnergyStar, EnerGuide, energy gone

I've been hearing that natural gas costs are going up sharply, and the evidence of climate change just keeps coming, so when Garth mentioned a new motor for our ancient furnace, I suggested getting a whole new furnace instead. Our latest energy bill included a pamphlet about saving both gas and electricity with a high efficiency furnace and a variable speed motor, which not only uses less electricity but also regulates airflow for more even, comfortable heating. It's even supposed to keep the house cleaner because the filters work better at lower airflow rates. A cleaner house with no effort on my part?! I like the sound of that.

While I waited for the price quote, I decided to try another run through EnergyCheck. It's a really nifty online tool for Saskatchewan residents, that analyses your energy use based on your actual SaskPower and SaskEnergy bills, plus information you enter about your home and its windows, appliances, etc. A tip: appliances often have the year of manufacture marked on them, or included in the serial number. But don't be too sure about a likely-looking number within the serial number. My fridge has a serial number ending in "99," but after some Googling and emailing around to find out what corporation has swallowed up "Westinghouse Canada," I concluded that the fridge must be older than 1980. It's getting replaced. Today. But before I get talking about fridges: let me know if the EnergyCheck works for you. I've tried it twice and it gave me lots of detailed information, but then near the end it said there was a problem with one or other of the SaskPower/Energy account numbers I'd entered. I'll give an update here if I get an answer from EnergyCheck about that.

Now, about that fridge... I had posted a lengthy litany here about my experience with the Office of Energy Efficiency regarding EnergyStar labels, but after a good night's sleep, I decided to pull it until I've given them a fair chance to answer my complaints in private. I'll keep you posted...

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