Step aside 1970s heating systems! As part of the “Discover Ductless” campaign by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA), Seattle City Light customers have a chance to show their friends they don’t have to live like it’s 1975 and win $10,000.
The campaign encourages homeowners to modernize by trying a more energy-efficient heating technology. Ductless heating and cooling systems heat and cool homes at a fraction of the cost of baseboards and wall heaters, and typically save homeowners 25 to 50 percent on heating bills.
At goingductless.com, customers can place their photos in 70s era backgrounds and email 70s style postcards to friends who may still be living like it’s 1975. Residents of Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana can enter for a chance to win a $10,000 cash prize for exploring the technology at www.goingductless.com. The winner will be randomly selected and the prize awarded Jan. 10.
“Ductless heating and cooling systems are a prime example of how NEEA is working with utility partners to bring new energy saving technologies to market,” said Alexis Allan, Residential Operations Manager, Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance. “Baseboards from the 1970s need to go the way of the polyester leisure suit in favor of more efficient technologies that protect our region’s environment, save energy, and save homeowners money on their heating bills.”
Ductless systems are relatively unknown in the U.S. residential market, but have been widely used in Asia and Europe since the 1970s and in U.S. commercial buildings since the 1980s. Ductless systems don’t require the use of air ducts; instead they typically have a wall-mounted component that delivers heated or cooled air directly into the home, avoiding efficiency losses associated with ductwork. In the last three years, NEEA’s utility partners, including City Light, have championed the technology, installing 11,846 ductless heat pumps in the Northwest at a savings of 41,461,000 kilowatt-hours per year. That’s enough electricity to power 3,805 average homes for an entire year. Customer feedback has been extremely positive.
Seattle City Light offers a $1,200 rebate on energy-efficient ductless systems. Federal tax credits are available as well.
Ductless systems have the potential to save the Northwest region 200 average megawatts of energy each year—the equivalent to powering more than 170,000 homes. NEEA and its partners piloted ductless systems in the Northwest climate in October 2008, and trained installers unfamiliar with the technology. In the 14-month pilot program, more than 59 participating Northwest utilities installed 3,899 ductless systems. The Discover Ductless campaign is an extension of that pilot.
For more information: www.goingductless.com.