In search of a way to improve your home, don’t overlook the importance of becoming more energy efficient. Changing how energy efficient your home is can lead to greater monthly savings. Reducing your home’s energy consumption will also be better for the environment and that’s an endeavor always worth contributing to. Do note that you don’t have to completely renovate your home to improve how efficiently it uses energy.
Addressing certain parts of your home will be enough to make a real difference.
Invest in Attic Insulation
Maintaining a comfortable room temperature can be difficult during the winter and summer months. It may simply seem like the hot or cold air is not lingering long enough inside your home. You should know that a problem such as that can be fixed. If you notice that the desired room temperature cannot be maintained for long inside your home, that could be because you lack sufficient insulation.
As noted by the Department of Energy, your heating system has to work harder during the winter to compensate for the heat loss that occurs. It’s also true that your cooling system has to work longer to maintain a comfortable temperature during the summer. By investing more in insulation, you can decrease the heat flow and regulate temperatures inside your home better. Insulating the attic in particular should help immensely because doing so creates a barrier that keeps hot or cold air where it needs to be.
Repair or Redesign Your Roof
While you’re up there making changes to your attic, consider taking a closer at the roof too. Small holes in the roof could be the reason why your home is losing or gaining heat faster than it should. Patch those small openings up right away. The lack of holes in your roof does not mean you don’t have to make any further improvements. BobVila.com recommends making additional changes that should greatly improve how energy efficient your roof is. These changes include adding intake and exhaust vents that prevent the attic from getting too hot as well applying a radiant barrier. You can also look into using energy efficient roof shingles that keep excess heat outside of the attic.
Update Your Windows or Install New Ones
According to the Department of Energy, heat flow through windows is responsible for a whopping 25 to 30 percent of heating and cooling system usage for households across the country. Those are very high numbers and they speak to why windows have to be points of emphasis when improving a home. Make sure you take the time to repair your windows by patching up leaks or caulking any small openings. Treating your windows and adding some solar control film are other improvements worth considering. If your windows are already in bad shape and need to be replaced anyway, consider purchasing storm windows. Storm windows are great for minimizing heat loss and heat gain. They are also ideal additions to the home because they prevent air from leaking.
Use Energy Efficient Lights and Smart Power Strips
You may not think that the lights you use at home have much of an impact on your electric bills, but that is not necessarily the case. Incandescent light bulbs pale in comparison to the more advanced lighting options we have today in terms of energy efficiency. In order to cut down on your lighting costs, the National Resources Defense Council recommends switching to LED bulbs. By doing so, you can end up reducing your energy bills by about $100 annually.
To further drive down your energy bills, you may want to purchase a smart power strip. Smart power strips cut off power supply to appliances even when they are in standby mode, according to How Stuff Works. What that means is that when you turn something off, it really is no longer consuming electricity. Appliances don’t use a lot of energy when they are in standby mode, but those small consumptions can still pile up over a long period of time. Every little bit helps when you’re trying to save so give some thought to adding smart power strips to your home.
Fix Your Heating System
Enduring the winter cold for prolonged periods is not something many of us can pull off. We need to rely on our heating system just to retain some semblance of comfort. Using your heating system more often is unavoidable during the winter so at least make sure that it’s working properly. Energy Star recommends checking on the filters and burners to see if they’re clean. If they aren’t, they can affect the efficiency of the entire system. A crack in the heat exchanger may also lead to faulty or inefficient operation. Lastly, remember to lubricate the moving parts of the heating system so that less energy is needed to get them running.
There are different ways to improve your home
You can apply a new coat of paint to your walls, beautify your backyard, or even add new rooms. Don’t forget about improving its energy efficiency though. In the long run, that could be the change that makes the biggest positive impact.