Posted by: lcowie | November 16, 2010

Baseload Appliances

One question that stumped me on the BPI Building Analyst written exam pertained to appliance heat and energy efficiency. The question asked me which base load appliance has the potential for most energy savings. The options were television, refrigerator, clothes dryer, and something else. These appliances all give off heat, and therefore give off energy. People and equipment, such as computers, light, and pets, all give off heat.

I know a base load appliance is one that is nonseasonal, which means homeowners use it all the time. The television doesn’t have to run all the time; people can turn it off. The refrigerator definitely runs all the time, and I disregarded the clothes dryer option because I knew it wasn’t right. I was between television and refrigerator.

In my BPI training class, we had talked about the biggest culprits of heat and energy use. I remember my instructor saying that DVRs and video game stations use up a lot of energy because homeowners constantly use them and forget to turn them off.

On the other hand, I remember discussing refrigerators in class, too. We had talked about how homeowners with refrigerators in their garages often have outdated models that use up lots of energy. Not only is the refrigerator running all the time, but it’s old so it uses lots of energy as it is. We had talked in class about how you should replace your garage refrigerator with a current model, so it is energy efficient.

I was between both answers for the longest time. I was stuck on television because I figured a homeowner could just turn it off. I switched my answer, during my review period, to refrigerator. As I said before, the refrigerator runs all the time, so if I am using an outdated model in the garage and I replace it, I should be saving tons of money.

What would your explanation have been? Leave a comment letting me know which questions stumped you on the BPI Building Analyst exam!


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