Monday, January 31, 2011

Save on your Heating Bill!

With ever-rising energy costs, it makes sense to review the following tips and try and manage your heating bill. In addition, your helping the environment!
  • Check for home air leaks. You may be able to save up to 10% on your bill by reducing leaks. On a windy day, run a lighter or smoke stick around windows to see where the air is coming in and you can caulk, seal or weather strip the area. 
  • Insulate your home. Most of the times it's as easy as going to Home Depot and indoor installation and putting it up in the attic. You can also hire someone for minimal cost to do this for you.
  • Close fireplace dampers. Chimneys are designed for smoke to escape which means air is escaping too.
  • Maintain your heating a cooling system. Make sure these systems receive professional maintenance each year. If it's time for a new system, look into energy-efficient systems and you may get a tax credit for installing one.
  • Use kitchen, bath and ventilating fans wisely. Those fans suck up the air including the hot air. After using it, turn it off immediately.
  • Turn off energy users when not in use and unplug those items as well. Individually they might not add up to a lot but together it can cost you. 

Monday, January 10, 2011

New sewer lateral ordinance for Emeryville, Oakland, & Piedmont - Effective Spring 2011.

Important DATE Change to the Sewer Lateral Requirement for Emeryville, Oakland and Piedmont
 - Implementation to begin Spring of 2011
 - New DATE will be posted on as soon as announced

A court order now requires the cities of Oakland, Emeryville and Piedmont to require homeowners to fix or upgrade their sewer lines when a home is sold or upgraded.  The East Bay Municipal Utility District ("EBMUD") Wastewater Control Ordinance will require property owners in certain areas of the EBMUD wastewater service area to obtain a compliance certificate that shows their private sewer laterals ("PSL's") are without defects and have proper connections. The private sewer lateral program requirements for property owners will be phased in throughout 2011.

The cities of Alameda, Albany, Berkeley and the Stege Sanitary District (which serves Kensington, the City of El Cerrito and a portion of the City of Richmond) have local private sewer lateral ordinances already in effect.