Energy Efficiency

TVA launches virtual home energy audits for customers

The Tennessee Valley Authority on July 1 said it has launched virtual home energy evaluations, enabling residents across its seven-state region to benefit from money-saving energy advice, even during pandemic conditions.

“Innovation is in TVA‘s DNA, and we’re using new technology to provide consumers expert energy advice, while maintaining CDC social distancing guidelines,” said Frank Rapley, senior manager, TVA EnergyRight.

TVA said that it is the first utility in the southeast U.S. to launch virtual home energy evaluations.

Normally a technician would visit a customer’s home to complete the evaluation, TVA noted. Now, customers can use their smart device to interact with an energy professional through an app and augmented reality technology.

“It was really easy,” said Bri Moran, Nashville, Tennessee. “We looked at my appliances, thermostat and heat and air unit, and checked the weather stripping on my doors and windows. He made it simple to find everything, because I wasn’t sure where everything was.”

Rapley noted that energy evaluations help customers save money by identifying areas where energy loss may occur. The new technology makes the evaluation possible while maintaining safe social distancing and including the homeowner in the experience, TVA said.

“While in-person inspections are done while homeowners wait in their living rooms, virtual inspections take them along the journey. We get them excited about saving energy in their home, and we can see they’re really interested in learning,” Rapley said.

TVA partnered with CLEAResult, which designs and maintains energy optimization services for utility companies, to bring this product to customers.

TVA virtual home energy evaluations are open to all residential customers – homeowners, landlords, and tenants – of qualifying single-family residences within TVA’s service area.

Additional information about TVA’s virtual home energy evaluation program is available here.

Energy New England offering a remote home energy assessment option

Energy New England on April 9 said it is offering a remote home energy assessment option to customers of participating Municipal Light Plants.

The effort started on March 13 after a stay at home advisory was issued in Massachusetts.

Meanwhile, municipal light departments participating in the Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company residential energy efficiency program will begin offering virtual energy efficiency audits in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new service, which will include virtual energy efficiency audits as well as virtual verification for energy efficiency rebates, is being offered through MMWEC’s Home Energy Loss Prevention Services (HELPS) program. Nineteen consumer-owned municipal utilities participate in HELPS.