Your most frequently asked questions... answered!
This year, since Vermont’s Home Shows were cancelled as part of the Governor’s Stay at Home order, we are bringing them to you. Here is a roundup of your most frequently asked questions. We’re calling it our “Stay-at-Home-Show.”
- Are cold climate heat pumps worth it - even in spring and summer?
- Does Efficiency Vermont do home energy audits?
- Should I replace my windows?
- What are the best rebates for you from Efficiency Vermont or your utility?
- What are the current rebates from Efficiency Vermont for residential or business customers?
- How do I find a contractor or retailer?
- What is the Efficiency Excellence Network (EEN)?
- What can I do about my wet basement?
- How can Efficiency Vermont help me if I have a low or moderate income?
- Should I get a smart thermostat?
- What are the most efficient grow lights for starting my seeds inside this spring?
Matt weighs in on another common question Vermonters have about cold climate heat pumps. Watch the video and then check out our guide on whether a heat pump system is right for you.
Customer Engagement Manager, Becca White, answers some of the most common questions that we get when we’re talking to Vermonters. She starts by explaining why Efficiency Vermont doesn’t do home energy audits. Instead, we'll help you find a contractor in your area that can help you through the whole process. You can also start with a free over-the-phone home energy assessment with our Customer Service team.
Matt gives some advice on why replacing your windows – even if they’re old – might not be the most cost-effective way to save money and energy. He also offers some other tips on tightening up your existing windows. After watching his answer, read more in our guide on when to repair or replace your windows.
Becca recommends going to the Rebates page on this website and searching for the product or service that you're interested in to learn more about our available rebates. Efficiency Vermont offers rebates on heating systems, household appliances, insulation and air sealing services, and more. We also share when your utility has a rebate for a certain product, like heat pumps or heat pump water heaters.
One of our most popular handouts at Home Shows and other events is our list of current rebates for your home. You can also search through our full directory of rebates on this site to find exactly what you're looking for. If you're a business owner, here's a similar overview of our programs for businesses and farms and a directory of available rebates.
If you’re ready to move forward on your energy project, we can help you find a contractor or retailer in your area. Click on “Find a Contractor or Retailer” at the top of the Efficiency Vermont homepage. Simply select the type of service you’re looking for (a weatherization contractor, a general contractor, or a retailer), and enter your zip code. The results will include information on the contractor, their contact information, and recent reviews from other customers.
Efficiency Excellence Network (EEN) members are a network of independent contractors committed to providing their customers the highest level of professional energy efficiency services. This network is comprised of experts in the advanced technologies and building sciences that make buildings more energy efficient and affordable to maintain. They are also trained to understand and consider important health and safety measures that are key to any job. Learn more about the EEN.
When you search for a contractor, you can select the “EEN” filter to identify Network members for your project.
Senior Residential Energy Consultant, Matt Sargent, addresses this question about a common springtime problem for households in Vermont. Watch his answer, then take a look at our guide to dealing with a wet, leaky, or damp basement to learn more.
If you have a low- or moderate-income, visit our Income Based Assistance program to read about some of our programs designed to help manage your energy bills. Then, reach out to our Customer Service team at (888) 921-5990 or email@example.com for more details and eligibility.
Smart thermostats take the work out of making sure you’re not wasting energy with your heating system. They’ll learn your habits to adjust temperatures accordingly, learn from the weather, and can be adjusted remotely from your smartphone. These simple features can help you save money and keep your house more comfortable, so a smart thermostat might be a great choice for you! Read our guide for more info on smart thermostats like Nest and ecobee.
If you’re starting seeds indoors, the first thing to consider is light. Seedlings generally care about blue and red wavelengths of light: blue to promote root and leaf growth, and red to promote flowering and fruiting. Today, LED grow lights can provide the blue and red wavelengths that will help your plants grow indoors. For seedlings, a one- or two-lamp ENERGY STAR™ LED shop light or strip fixture might be enough. If you’re trying to grow plants to maturity indoors, they’ll need a more robust specialty grow light, such as one of the DLC-certified lights you can find on our list of qualifying products. Remember – plants may respond differently to the same situation, so it’s important to experiment if you find that a light is not working for one variety.