Saving Energy — Saving Money

— Written By N.C. Cooperative Extension

As energy costs rise, you may be looking for ways to reduce energy consumption and save money on your utility bill. Burke County residents have an opportunity in January to learn how to save energy and money with low-cost home energy audits being offered through Cooperative Extension’s E-Conservation program.  

The audits include a thorough examination of the home and a blower door test to identify air leakage. A certified energy rater inspects mechanical, heating and ventilation systems, insulation, and conducts a walk-through inspection of current appliances.  At the conclusion of the home assessment, the homeowners will receive a written evaluation and recommendation on ways to improve the home’s energy efficiency.  Recommendations can include anything from adding insulation, caulking, house holes, using a programmable thermostat, servicing the furnace, or changing personal energy use habits to reduce energy use and save money.  

There are a limited number of audits available for qualified homeowners.  Homeowners pay a fee of $100 for an audit, a bargain compared with the $500 market value for the service.  The audit program focuses on existing homes that are up to 2,000 square feet, five years old and have one heating and cooling system.

Homeowners may qualify by attending an Extension energy conservation workshop at Burke County Agriculture Building.  The next workshops entitled Saving Energy—Saving Money will be held Thursday, January 22, 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.; Friday, January 23, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.; and Saturday, January 24, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.  Pre-register by calling 439-4460.  At that time, we will register you for the workshop and request your contact information in order to send you additional information concerning the home energy audit.

The E-Conservation Program was created to inform and educate North Carolina consumers about ways to both reduce energy use and increase energy efficiency in the home. Visit Extension’s Internet resources on

Eleanor Summers
Extension Agent
Family and Consumer Sciences