Reduce Home Energy With These Three Tips
Making sure your home is insulated well enough is one of the best things you can do to save money on energy use. It will drastically cut down the money you spend on your bill and another plus is it improves the air quality for everyone The good news is, you can do it without breaking the bank. Your attic is typically the hottest part of your house and because hot air rises, leakages are likely to occur. These leaks are most common between the wall and attic floor, beneath attic knee walls and in dropped-ceiling areas.
Make sure to plug large holes and seal the small ones. You can do this by simply looking for darkened areas that are already insulated. These areas result from air being filtered before leaking through small holes in the building envelope. Who wants that? Our tip is to use expanding foam or caulk to seal openings around the problem areas and make sure to cover those tricky spots with insulation once things are dry.
While you're at it, go ahead and check the insulation of your doors and windows. If windows have damaged wood or paneling, cracked glass, missing putty or locks that, well, don't lock, it's important to repair or replace.
Install Window Treatments
No one likes watching television with the heat of the summer blazing down on them through the window. Not only that, but when those winter months hit hard, you expect your house to be warm and cozy. By installing window treatments, your house will be less likely to overheat in the summer and more likely to stay warm in the winter. Window treatments have been said to reduce heat in the home by nearly 75 percent and the same goes for reducing heat loss in the winter. Talk about an easy, inexpensive fix!
One of the most efficient window treatments are retractable awnings. Choosing light colors will reflect more sunlight and in the winter they can easily be rolled in to let the natural warmth of the sun keep your home warm. Interior window treatments, such as curtains or drapes, will not only keep heat out, but will also bring great style to any room. It's a win-win! It's important to note that all curtains and drapes aren't the same. Medium-colored window treatments with white backings reduce heat by over 30 percent. One of the best options for these window treatments are "black-out curtains," which are known for keeping rooms dark and cool.
Lower Your Water Heater and Usage
Let's face it, we all love a hot shower at the end of any given day. However, did you know water heaters are the second biggest reason your energy bill could be sky rocketing? Have no fear, just lower your water heater's thermostat from 140 degrees to 120, which will prevent scalding and keep unhealthy bacteria from growing. There are several other ways you can save money on your bill. Another way is to not let the water run when you're doing every day things like brushing your teeth or washing dishes. Those extra minutes will add extra dollars to your bill. While you keep track of your water usage, make sure you also keep track of how old your water heater is. If it's more than 15 years old, it's important you install an insulating wrap to reduce heat loss.
These three tips will save you money in the long run and will protect the environment at the same time. Sounds like a win-win to us! To reduce energy consumption in your home doesn't mean you have to spend hundreds on energy efficient products. Just as simple as doing a home inspection can save you plenty of money in the long run. Check out our Membership Directory for great resources to help you with your home maintenance needs.
Blog Post By: Mary Klemenok | CRBA Communications Coordinator