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Energy Star


Snapshot & Benefits:

Energy Star is a joint program between the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy with a focus on energy-efficient and environmentally-sensitive products.  Their mission is to help consumers save money while protecting the environment through the purchase of energy-efficient products and homes.  The Energy Star label is used to help consumers easily identify which products (appliances, office equipment, lighting, electronics, etc.) meet or exceed energy-efficiency standards to help save energy and money.


In order to be awarded the label, a product must:

  •  have minimal greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants

  • offer significant worldwide energy savings

  • be marketable to consumers with features they are looking for

  • have a reasonable return on investment

  • have a measurable energy usage

  • and be broadly available to consumers.

Similarly, Energy Star for New Homes certifies homes that are energy-efficient and offer features that help reduce energy costs and save the environment.  Typically, Energy Star homes are 20-30% more efficient than standard homes.  Energy-efficiency in these homes is typically achieved through combinations of Energy Star appliances, lighting, tightly sealed duct work, energy-efficient windows, effective insulation, high performance heating and cooling equipment, and a myriad of other features that help homeowners save money and energy.


Estimated Cost Savings:

While some Energy Star certified products are usually more expensive, the energy savings they offer produces a relatively quick return on investment.  For more information, consult Energy Star's Product Guide and click on the product you are interested in for details on projected energy savings. 


Some Energy Star products qualify for a federal tax incentive of up to 30% of total costs. However, not every product qualifies and some qualify for different incentives than others.  Click here to find out about the different incentives offered and how to apply for the credit.


Installation (Getting It Done):

When purchasing new appliances, office equipment, etc., look for the Energy Star label.  Talk to a salesperson and ask about Energy Star products and how the energy savings compare to standard models.  Consider consulting Energy Star's Online Product Guide before shopping for buying guidance. 


Start with the simpler products such as light bulbs and cordless phones.  These are relatively inexpensive products that can have a dramatic impact on your energy bills. 


When purchasing or leasing a new home, look for one that has earned the Energy Star label.  These quality, high performance, energy-efficient homes were built according to Energy Star guidelines with the constant guidance of a certified rater, making them healthy, comfortable, affordable properties.  Be sure to ask your real estate agent about the home's energy-efficient features and projected savings.


Videos on This Topic:

What Does the Energy Star Indicate? (1:23) - Expert Real Estate Tips - Find out what the Energy Star labels means and how it can contribute to energy efficiency and environmentally-sensitive home choices.


More Information on This Topic:


Energy Star - About


Energy Star - What is Energy Star?


Energy Star - The Power to Protect the Environment Through Energy Efficiency


Energy Star - How a Product Earns the Label


Energy Star - Save Energy at Home


Energy Star for New Homes


Energy Star - Find Energy Star Products


Energy Star's Home Energy Yardstick


Energy Star Home Advisor



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