‘An uncomfortable home has an energy problem’

Posted at 8:53 AM, May 15, 2014

MECHANICSVILLE, Va. (WTVR) - Temperatures are rising rapidly as summer approaches, so the temptation to crank up your home's air conditioner is likely creeping in too.

Nearly half of the energy used in your home goes to cooling it, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

Making sure your home is energy efficient is an effective way to keep costs down while staying cool, experts said.  Dominion Virginia Power has a little known program that helps with the process.

As a part of the "home energy check-up," contractors audit a home's energy performance and make simple improvements to make it more efficient.  For qualifying customers, Dominion said there is little to no cost to the homeowner for the improvements the contractors make.

During a typical check-up, contractors install:

  • Compact florescent light bulbs
  • Efficient faucets and aerators
  • Water heater and pump insulation
  • HVAC filters
  • Smart power strips
  • Door weatherization

"If a house has a comfort problem, if it's uncomfortable, it probably has an energy problem," Neil Sullivan with Building Science Inc., one of Dominion's contractors, said.

Dominion said the changes can save customers up to $250 a year.

Contractors can also tune-up your heat pump, which accounts for a large percentage of home energy consumption.  It is a separate program that can save customers up to $90.

More information on both programs can be found at