Ready to turn on the AC? Check your Microsoft Hohm energy efficiency score first

Microsoft picked a fabulous day to release its new Hohm Scores service, which is a database cataloging the energy efficiency of 60 million homes in the United States.Here in New Jersey, I just broke down and turned on the air conditioning for the first time this spring after I realized how crabby I was getting in my humid 90-plus degree, second-floor office.

Microsoft picked a fabulous day to release its new Hohm Scores service, which is a database cataloging the energy efficiency of 60 million homes in the United States.

Here in New Jersey, I just broke down and turned on the air conditioning for the first time this spring after I realized how crabby I was getting in my humid 90-plus degree, second-floor office.

Right after I did this, I plugged in my address and discovered that with an average score of 67, my house is about as efficient as the rest of the houses here in New Jersey. Actually, my state is ranked as the fifth-most efficient state on Microsoft's national average list, after Hawaii, Delaware, Maryland and the District of Columbia. But consider that my score equates into a D+, if you think about it, that's not really saying much. The highest scores, in Hawaii, are only 81. Which is technically a B-.

I'm not sure I like my energy-efficiency GPA.

The chart below isn't the score for MY home, but it gives you an idea of what the charts will look like:

Anyway, I'm not about to turn my air-conditioning off. At least yet. But I am going to consider moving my desk on certain days when it's just a little too balmy. And I'm going to look at ways to get my score up to at least a solid B. Of course, I also have to rely on the other people in my town to do the same, because I am guessing there is a lot of averaging going on here. Easier said than done.

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