Your Home Electrification Guide

When the problem is as big as climate change, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Should you recycle more, stop eating meat, use paper instead of plastic bags. There are so many things that seem to make so little difference, it’s no wonder that climate anxiety is now a real thing.

And what can the average person do anyway? Isn’t it governments and multinational companies that are supposed to be fixing this mess?

Well there is something the average person can do that will make a huge difference – two things, to be precise: 

1.     Green up the grid

2.     Electrify everything in your life

Electric Meters
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Okay, so greening up the grid might be a tall order for the average person, but you can certainly green up your small part of it.

Electrifying everything in your life, though. That’s very doable, and something we should all get to work on right away.

The non-profit Rewiring America estimates that if we can get theses two things done by 2035 we can eliminate around 40% of US carbon emissions. They also estimate that doing so will require that we replace one billion machines. 

While that may seem like a mind-bogglingly large number, it actually works out to be about 8 machines for each of the 123 million households in the United States.

In this section of the site, we’ll give you a road map – a Home Electrification Guide, if you will. We’ll help you figure out where to start, share some resources and  introduce you to some of the Green Tech companies that are driving the energy transition, as well as some pretty cool climate tech leaders who are leading the home electrification movement.

If we regular folks can take care of the 40% of emissions that our homes, gardens and cars are responsible for, we can leave the politicians and business leaders to take care of the rest.

What Does Home Electrification Mean?

You might be wondering, “Wait, my house already has electricity” And, of course, you’d be right. We all have dozens of lights, appliances and tools that are all powered by electrical energy. 

But when people talk about electrifying their homes, they’re not talking about what you already have – they’re referring to full home electrification, which means running your entire house on electricity from heating, cooking and laundry to electric cars, electric bikes and electric garden tools. Even electric boats are starting to gain popularity. 

Over time, we can build an entire lifestyle around clean energy appliances and tools.

An Image Of An Exterior Part Of Electric Heat Pumps Placed Outside The House.
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Benefits of Electrification

While millions of individual households gradually switch to electric, the people who are charged with supplying our electricity are simultaneously working to do so with renewable energy. 

It all adds up to a massive win in the fight against climate change, without having to give up the comforts or 21st century life.

Some of the benefits of electrification include:

1. Reducing your Carbon Footprint

The first, most obvious benefit is that whole saving-the-planet thing that everyone’s been talking about. Electrifying your home is the most effective way to reduce your carbon footprint both by making it more efficient and by reducing its CO2 emissions.

2. A More Healthy Home

Burning fossil fuels is really bad for your health. Burning them in an enclosed space like a house is even worse. We’re only just starting to fully appreciate how unhealthy cooking with gas is, for instance. Add in an oil or gas-burning furnace, a gasoline-powered lawn mower and a couple of cars that need both gasoline and frequent oil changes to operate and you start to build up a pretty unhealthy lifestyle.

Electric appliances don’t release harmful emissions and don’t have open flames. Your lungs will thank you for switching all of those machines to all electric.

3. Long Term Savings

By investing in electricity for your home, you can also reap some great long-term financial benefits! By using energy-efficient devices and appliances to manage your home’s operations, full electrification could save you as much as $2,500 per year. Rewiring America reported these findings in a study published in 2020; over time, the savings will really start to add up!

4. Electric is Often Just Better

Call it the Tesla effect, if you like, because the fact is that very few people were interested in buying an electric car until Tesla made one that was better than any gas-powered car on the market. 

Admittedly, “better” is a subjective term, which means something different to different people. But most people who have driven one agree that the Tesla is a pretty cool car to drive. And the same is true of most electric vehicles.

It’s also true of heat pumps, induction stoves, electric lawn mowers and many other all-electric appliances. Consumers seldom have to make sacrifices for the sake of the environment any more. The electric versions of many of our most useful machines are already far better than their fossil fuel-burning counterparts. 

What do you need to replace?

If you want to electrify your home, then over the next few years, you’re going to have to replace some of the things that make your house run. That doesn’t mean you have to rip out a perfectly good gas stove and replace it with an induction cooktop right away. 

It just means you have to have a plan for replacing the following tools and appliance when then do eventually need to be replaced.

Electric Stove

Let’s start with that gas stove we just mentioned. With increasing environmental awareness and safety considerations, many people are now choosing to switch away from gas appliances and install an induction stovetop instead. 

Not only is this type of stove powered by electricity, it is also safer than traditional electric stoves as it does not retain residual heat after being switched off. Changing to an induction stove is a great choice for those wanting to electrify their home. 

And if you don’t yet feel ready to make a full-switch to induction cooking, you can take a first step by adding a portable induction cooktop so that you can transition gradually over time.

Electric Heating and Cooling System

Are you still using an outdated or gas-powered heating system in your home? If you’re still using an outdated oil or gas-powered heating system in your home, you can switch to electric heating with air source heat pumps.

Heat pumps are a more efficient and cost-effective way to heat and cool your home, and the technology is always improving, so you can save money on your energy bills and enjoy a more comfortable home all year long.

The installation process can be as fast and easy as slotting one into a window or digging up half of your backyard. We’ll guide you through the various options.

If your hot water heater is fueled by the same oil or gas furnace that heats your home (mine is), you can switch it out for an electric one. Better yet, replace it with a heat pump water heater which is typically far more efficient than a conventional electric hot water heater. 

Electric Dryer

If your home is powered by gas, it’s quite likely that your clothes dryer may be gas-powered as well. If so, you can update it and replace it with an electric dryer. Trouble is, electric dryers use a LOT of power and are hugely inefficient.

For some people, a better option is a heat pump clothes dryer. They may take a little longer to dry your clothes but they’re far more efficient wit the added benefit that they can go anywhere in your house without the need for an outside vent.

Electric Car

Perhaps the biggest step you can take in your home electrification journey is to buy or lease an electric vehicle (EV). Not only will you save money on gas, but you can conveniently charge the car at home overnight while you sleep.

The average American car owner drives 13,000 miles a year and most EVs now have a range that’s suitable for that amount of driving. Even if charging an EV increases your electricity bill, you’ll make up for it through the savings of no longer buying gas.

Electric Panel

To ensure that your home is equipped to handle all the electric appliances you’re planning to buy, it’s likely that you’ll need to upgrade your current electrical panel. This is also a good time to install an energy management system, such as Span or Lumin, which allows you to monitor and control your electricity usage. With this new technology, you’ll be able to maximize your savings and efficiency.

With the right upgrades, you’ll have the peace of mind that your home is ready for electrification!

Cost of Home Electrification

There’s no doubt that all this home electrification is going to cost money. But there are plenty of incentives available to help homeowners manage the transition.

There is also the fact that many of the new all-electric appliances we’re transitioning to are way more efficient than their fossil-fueling counterparts, so there are additional long-term savings to be considered. 

In this home electrification guide we’ll walk you through the costs, the incentives, and the savings of switching to an all electric home.

Home Electrification Resources

Here you’ll find resources to help you with your home electrification projects. Everything from ebooks and guides to info about green tech companies that are building the climate tech products we need. Even lists of local contractors for you to work with.