U.S. Energy Efficiency

What 5 million data points say about energy efficiency potential

Energy efficiency is the country's cheapest power source and the secret to unlocking its potential isn't a new fracking fluid or a new nuclear reactor design. The key is data. A new era of data transparency and quantification is turning energy efficiency from a guesstimate into a reliable and deployable resource that our country can count on. This page is a small peek into that brave new world that brings together data on housing structures, heating and cooling, appliances, and energy habits from more than 120,000 U.S. households. The data illuminates clear opportunities for saving energy and money.

National Highlights

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Lighting

North and South Dakotans report using more conventional light bulbs than any other state, at 1.5 times the national average. Vermonters, by contrast, report using efficient bulbs at the highest rate, 1.8 times the national average.

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Appliances

States with the most stand-alone freezers in addition to a primary fridge and freezer? Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming, all in excess of 2x the national average.

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Heating Set Point

West Virginians like it warmer in the winter. They set their thermostats higher than most other states. Rhode Islanders keep their homes the coolest in winter.

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Cooling Set Point

Alabamans set their thermostats cooler than any other state in the summer. Others who keep their AC chillier than average include residents of Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New York, Tennessee, and West Virginia.

State by State

Potential savings per household
Medium High Very High

Wyoming

More likely than the U.S. average to have:
  • A second freezer (2.2x)
  • Homes without ducts (2.9x)
  • Electric dryers (1.2x)
  • Window air conditioning units (2x)
  • Storm windows with very little shading (2.6x)
  • Electric baseboard heating (4x)
  • Significant draftiness (1.5x)
Energy Efficiency Opportunities by Measure for Wyoming

Heating

  • 21% use electric heat vs. 35% nationally
  • 79% heat their homes with gas compared to 55% nationally
  • Of those, 28% have a system 15 or more years old vs. 12% nationally

Windows

  • 25% have efficient windows vs. 18% nationally
  • 23% have storm windows vs. 13% nationally

Air Tightness

  • 17% report their homes are "very drafty," vs. 12% nationally

Foundation

  • 53% of homes have basements vs. 36% nationally

Laundry

  • 98% use electric dryers vs. 80% nationally

Ducts

  • 34% don't have ducts vs. 12% nationally

Cooling

  • 11% have window AC vs. 5% nationally

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