10 Questions for Ed Begley Jr.:
- Are Americans obsessed with long, hot showers?
- Ed: Many Americans are obsessed with long, hot showers, most notably, my wife. Though I'm quite content with a brief "Navy shower," I have come to accept that others need a bit more. But, thanks to the new Epiphany Shower System, relief is on the way.
- Describe your Epiphany? How does it work?
- Ed: Very simply, the Epiphany Shower System is a smart, sensor-based system that knows when you are in the "shower zone" or have backed out of the shower zone to lather up, shave your legs, etc. When you step out of the zone, the Epiphany automatically reduces the shower flow, thereby saving a huge amount of water when you don't need full flow. At the same time, that reduced flow allows for the temperature to be maintained AND provide you just enough water to rinse your razor. Now, instead of saving water through compromise (like an uncomfortable low-flow shower head), you are now saving water only when you don't really need it in the first place -- and still enjoying a luxury shower with the shower head of your choice.
- Could this sensor apply to other faucets in the house -- such as the kitchen sink?
- Ed: The patented sensor technology in the Epiphany Shower System has an almost unlimited set of applications in the home, the garden, the workplace and across a number of large-scale commercial applications. The Epiphany is just the first in what will be a long line of wonderful products using this technology.
- What other products from the National Hardware Show did you find most groundbreaking?
- Ed: The Nokero solar lights. Amazing!
- What other exciting energy-saving home improvement solutions do you expect to see in the next year or so?
- Ed: A remote control power strip to allow someone to easily turn off unwanted electronics. Is that already out there? I played with an early version of it in my home about five years ago -- and I'm hopeful we'll see this technology come to full use soon. Shutting off all that phantom power easily and remotely would be great.
- What are the top five weekend home improvement projects where people can achieve the greatest gains in going green?
1) Energy-efficient lighting.
2) Energy-saving thermostat -- both installing one AND programming it of course.
3) Weather stripping around windows and doors.
4) Seldom used appliances on power strips to end vampire power.
5) Home gardening and home composting.
- What would you like to see happen to make solar energy more prevalent?
- Ed: Robust incentives to help folks invest in solar.
- Is the U.S. government doing enough to incentivize the use of energy-saving technology?
- Ed: We're doing good. We need to do better!
- What needs to happen for people to better embrace electric vehicles?
- Ed: A serious and ubiquitous charging infrastructure.
- Where can people save the most by doing the least?
- Ed: Proper insulation! Once your home's efficiency envelope is tight, all of the other energy production technologies like solar electric become that much more efficient. Everyone should start with an energy-efficient building envelope.
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