Great Video on Home Energy Monitors by Ask This Old House

We are big fans on monitoring electricity consumption so that you can manage and reduce it. This Old House has a great video showing the range of products for monitoring and managing electricity consumption in the house. We have and are big fans of the Kill-A-Watt, Watts?Up Pro and TED 5000 shown in the video. […]

Going for Solar: Construction (Step 9)

Beyond the first few steps in the waiting process comes the real work, construction.  Every solar project will be a little bit different depending on the design, location and local building requirements.  Our solar awning project construction happened in three steps: Awning Construction – Step 9a – coming soonBecause our roof orientation and configuration was […]

Going for Solar – Waiting (Step 8)

After you have done all the hard work of planning, negotiating, selecting a contractor and signing all the papers, comes the hardest and easiest part of the process: The Waiting!  Waiting is easy because there is nothing to do, but wait.  Waiting is hard because there is very little you can do to accelerate the […]

Holiday Light Trade-in and Recycling Program at Home Depot

Program re-instated for 2011 – More details! Do you have strings of old incandescent holiday lights around your house?  Do they even work?  Even if they don’t you can trade them in for a discount on energy efficient LED holiday lights at Home Depot from now until November 14, 2010. Home Depot will recycle the […]

Going for Solar – New Electric Meter (Step 7)

One of the steps to having a grid-tied solar installation is that you need to have an electric meter that can go both ways.  We are fortunate that we live in Massachusetts which has a long history of net-metering and our electric company, National Grid, quickly approved our application and installed our meter so effortlessly […]

Going for Solar – Paperwork (Step 6)

As with any big purchase in life, there is bound to be a few papers to sign. Solar projects are no exception. While this is not a fun part of the process, it is important. A good solar contractor like SunBug Solar, who we used, will make this process easy and do most of the […]

Going for Solar – Choosing Your Contractor (Step 5)

Installing a solar system is not a small investment.  In many cases it will be more expensive than buying a car and the contractor will be working in your home, so it pays to get a good contractor and one that you are comfortable with in the long run. For our project we sought bids […]

Going For Solar – Get Multiple Proposals or Bids (Step 4)

Since solar installations (even after incentives) cost more than most cars, you should definitely speak to several companies or contractors before making your decision to proceed and selecting the right one for you. Because we were not doing the standard roof top solar installation, several of the big players in our area NexAmp and GroSolar […]

Quoted on CNET Green Tech about our TED5000

A few weeks back back I talked with Martin LaMonica, editor of CNET News Green Tech, about our TED5000 home energy monitor.  He was doing research for an article about the “smart grid” and wanted to talk to me about what we thought of our home energy monitor now that we had been living with […]

Going For Solar – Solar Site Survey (Step 3)

Ben and Jordan taking measurements After you have done all the energy efficiency upgrades and behavior modifications around the house to reduce your load, then it is time to think about renewable energy (Caveat – See the caveat for New Jersey at the end of our earlier post).  To get started you should ask a […]