Home Efficiency Genie

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Your health and safety, as well as that of our residents, is of the utmost importance to the City of Palo Alto Utilities and the Home Efficiency Genie program team. To that end, we have temporarily suspended all in-home assessments until further notice as we adhere to the mandated ‘Shelter in Place’ provisions and follow CDC guidelines. In the meantime, we have started a Genie Virtual Assessment, providing you access to ongoing expert and unbiased advice to help you achieve your home comfort and efficiency goals.

The Genie is your trusted advisor for all efficiency and electrification upgrades and programs.

Do you have high utility bills? Are there areas of your home that are less comfortable than others? Are you considering replacing your water heater, furnace or any other major appliance? Are you interested in electrifying your home appliances to take advantage of Palo Alto Utilities carbon neutral electricity? The Home Efficiency Genie is here to help! The Genie provides free over the phone energy and water efficiency advice for all Palo Alto residents. Genie advisors provide expert and impartial guidance to save you money and keep you comfortable. 

Home Electrification Readiness Assessment

The Genie's new $49 Home Electrification Readiness Assessment helps residents determine if their old appliances and equipment are ready to be replaced, and if their electric panel can support new, efficient, electric alternatives. The assessment includes:

  • An evaluation of your home's electric panel
  • Examination of existing appliances and equipment
  • Your own Home Electrification Readiness Report

Electrify Your Home

A Virtual Genie Assessment costs $49 and includes:

  • Professional technician will guide you through your home using a virtual visit phone platform
  • Pointed discussion and exploration will help to uncover areas of energy efficiency improvements
  • Comfort concerns, windows, lighting, appliances, and many other items will be checked
  • If applicable, an assessment of the electric panel and desired electrification upgrades will be completed to determine the best path forward
  • Comprehensive report outlining and highlighting efficiency and comfort concerns will be given once the assessment has been completed

Contact the Genie

How the Genie Can Help

Why did my water usage go up so much?

Water Efficiency

The Genie can review your past water usage patterns and provide guidance on water efficiency programs in Palo Alto. The Genie Virtual Assessment may be able to help identify possible water leak sources. Also included are water saving devices including high efficient shower heads and faucet aerators.

Water Heating

The Genie can review the energy burden of your home's water heating. On average, water heating makes up 25% of a home's energy use. The Genie can help you review all potential water heating options, including installing a heat pump water heater to increase your home's efficiency.

How do I make my second floor cooler?

Call the Genie to learn more about the efficiency of your home's heating and cooling systems and the impact of insulation. The Genie can help you review different high-efficiency heating and cooling options. If you decide to move forward, the Genie can help you locate a qualified contractors for any projects. home's efficiency.

Does it make sense for us to put solar panels on our roof?

Interested in learning more about solar electricity for powering your home? The Genie can review your past electric consumption and help guide options for residential solar.

How will buying an electric vehicle impact my electricity bill?

The Genie offers guidance on the impact an EV will have on your home and energy use. The Genie can also provide advice on installing home EV chargers and locating public charging stations in Palo Alto. Check out our new EV/PV calculator to see if an EV may be right for you!

View the most up-to-date list of qualified Genie contractors.

Testimonials

What People Are Saying about Efficiency Genie

A Genie House Call is an easy way to bring efficiency to every aspect of your home. Hundreds of homes in Palo Alto have already received a Genie House Call and many have shared how the Genie has helped them.

The City of Palo Alto Utilities is proud to announce that the Home Efficiency Genie Program has received the National Energy Innovator Award for its application of creative, energy-efficient techniques and technologies. To read more, visit the American Public Power Association's press release.

  

“The Home Efficiency Genie is a full-service program that helped us identify home improvements we can do to make our home more efficient, comfortable and safe. Our energy advisor guided us through the process and helped us make informed decisions so that we get more bang for the buck! Everyone can benefit from this program because it’s customized to meet the unique characteristics of your home.”

LAU FAMILY
Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhood

“The Home Efficiency Genie just made [home efficiency upgrades] so easy for me. I can't believe the benefits you get from it. We found out that our furnace was only 72% efficient and reaching the end of its lifetime. Working with energy experts helped us weigh the different options and choose between qualified contractors. These are twenty-year decisions you are making – it’s great to receive such extensive input on how to best proceed.”

JOHN SACK
Barron Park neighborhood

“I thought the reason my furnace was struggling to heat the house was because it wasn’t big enough or the ductwork was inadequate.I needed some expert advice and the Genie program seemed ideal for me. When I got the report and comprehensive thermal images, it was clear that my problem is air leaking through gaps around doors, recessed lights, pipes etc. The Genie has worked very well for me and has been well worth the nominal investment.

BARKER FAMILY
Midtown neighborhood

Please email us if you have an experience with the Home Efficiency Genie that you'd like to share.

House Call

Due to COVID-19, the Genie House Call service is on hold until further notice. However, we can still provide you with a personalized assessment of your home with the virtual Genie using our innovative phone based platform by providing real time interactive efficiency advice.

Start with a Free Phone Consultation

An efficiency expert will begin by asking you about your energy goals and home concerns. They will analyze your past energy and water consumption patterns. Based on these findings, they will make custom recommendations for your home. In addition, the free Efficiency Genie phone consultation includes:

  • Details about what the Genie House Call Program entails
  • Information about City of Palo Alto rebates and programs that may be relevant to you
  • Unbiased advice on how to improve your home's comfort, reduce your utility bills, and make the most of your efficiency project

In-Person House Call and Evaluation

Pinpoint exactly where your home is wasting energy. A Genie House Call provides a checkup of your home and identifies where energy and water is being wasted by leaks, drafts, faulty equipment, and more. Each Genie House Call includes the following evaluations:

  • Efficiency Assessment of:
    • Heating, cooling and ventilation (HVAC) system(s)
    • Domestic hot water system(s)
    • Attic, floor, and wall insulation
    • Lighting efficiency
    • Windows
    • Major appliances
  • Building leakage testing using diagnostic equipment
  • Duct system and leakage testing
  • Whole-house infrared camera scan and evaluation
  • Optional Home Electrification Readiness Assessment
  • FREE direct install of efficiency products in qualifying homes, including:
    • 6 LED light bulbs
    • Tier-2 Advanced Power Strip
    • High-efficiency shower head
    • Faucet aerators

Walk Away with More than Just a Report

After your Genie House Call, you will receive a customized Assessment Report. It includes a comprehensive summary of findings with efficiency upgrade recommendations. The Genie’s help doesn’t stop there, you will also receive help understanding the findings and advice on how to proceed. You will walk away from the Genie House Call with:

  • A personalized explanation of the results of your Genie House Call and recommendations
  • Unbiased advice on prioritizing home efficiency upgrades based on impact, budget, and your goals
  • Help locating qualified contractors for project upgrades - See the Genie's list of Participating Contractors.
  • Help reviewing and comparing bids from contractors
  • A friendly, supportive, and reliable resource for all your efficiency needs