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Program Challenges Westporters To Save Energy

Westport resident Alan Abramson recently discovered that his home is wasting energy through what he calls "vents to nowhere." The “vents” were uncovered during a Westport Home Energy Challenge assessment.

"The technicians found what looked like two return vents, only they go nowhere," said Abramson, co-chair of the Westport Home Energy Challenge. "One blows air up into the attic and the other, into the wall. They're a complete waste."

Before the Home Energy Solutions assessment, which was sponsored by Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund, Abramson had no idea his home was wasting so much energy. Now that he knows, he can correct the problem areas.

That’s the goal of the Challenge, which tries to help Westporters make their homes more energy efficient. Through the program, which launched March 21, residents sign up for energy assessments, performed by certified technicians. Abramson said the assessment takes about three or four hours, but is well worth it.

"It can be invaluable what you learn about your home through the assessment," he said. "Some of what they do is check for leaks and, if possible, seal them on the spot, check all your vents and duct work, and install [energy saving light bulbs] and lower-flow shower heads. Just from the work they do, your home becomes eight to 12 percent more energy efficient."

An energy adviser is present to help the homeowner understand how the assessment works and recommend cost-effective remedies.

Abramson said the Challenge’s goal is to improve energy efficiency by 20 percent or more in at least 1,000 Westport homes by July 2013. The program is part of the Connecticut Neighbor to Neighbor Energy Challenge. For more information or to sign up for the program, visit the Connecticut Neighbor to Neighbor website .

How energy e fficient do you think your home is?

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