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Saving Energy and Caring for the Environment

Posted on Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Cedar Falls Yates Home Saves Energy

Cedar Falls Utilities encourages all residents to make changes to reduce energy usage and care for the environment. Our Energy Services team provides energy audits, HVAC equipment sizing
and other professional advice.

CFU also invested more than $1 million dollars last year in cost-sharing rebates to help customers make energy upgrades.

These efforts are paying off in Cedar Falls. Energy demand is steady, even as the community has added 2,000 electric customers over the past ten years.

Looking forward, we will continue to support efforts to reduce our community’s footprint.

One Cedar Falls couple has taken significant steps to reduce energy usage. Jack and Carole Yates are motivated to conserve energy and reduce greenhouse gases.

The Yates’ efforts over the past 30 years include building a passive solar home, two solar panel installations, a solar hot water heater and a geothermal HVAC system.

Recently, they added an all-electric car to their greenhouse gas reduction efforts.

Their passive solar home was designed to use the sun’s energy directly and reduce dependence on electricity and natural gas. Large windows on the south side of the home allow sunlight in the winter and dark tile floors absorb the heat. A wood-burning stove provides significant warmth and blinds provide insulation. In addition, windows are positioned to vent heat in the summer, reducing the need for air-conditioning.

“We enjoy the comforts of increased natural light, high-quality heat and low energy bills,” said Jack.

There are energy conscious steps every customer can take when designing a new home or remodeling an existing residence. CFU’s Energy Services team is available to consult with customers who would like to implement energy saving designs.

While not all CFU customers will choose to reduce energy usage through home design or solar panel installations, all residents should consider energy-saving changes such as upgrading to LED light bulbs, using a WiFi programmable thermostat or weather sealing.

“You don’t have to do it all, but everybody needs to do something,” said Carole.

The Yates also focus on behavior changes that anyone can incorporate in his or her home. “We encourage everyone in the community to set a goal and choose three small steps they can take to save energy, such as taking a shorter shower or using a clothes drying rack for one load of laundry per week,” said Carole. “Behavior change can make a significant difference.”

Interested in home updates? CFU offers cost-sharing rebates for energy improvements including insulation, HVAC equipment, duct work and weather sealing.

In addition, our Be Bright program offers a point-of-purchase discount for LED light bulbs at many area stores. For more information, visit cfu.net/save-energy.