Making your home more energy efficient is worthwhile for two main reasons. First, you will cut down on costs for your energy bill long term, and secondly, you will have a lesser impact on the environment. There are several improvements on energy saving features that you can take advantage of to achieve this. However, you must keep in mind that you don’t have to do all of them at once. Start with the energy saving house features that are easier for you. Read on to find out what you can do to make your home more energy-efficient.
Get an Energy Audit
To make improvements on energy saving house features that will have the most impact on your home’s energy efficiency, it is a good idea to start with an energy audit. Find a professional energy auditor to inspect your home and recommend the best energy saving products for homes. This assessment can take anywhere between an hour to several hours to complete.
The auditor will take a look at your monthly energy bill and try to determine what’s responsible for the spikes and dips in energy expenditures. Apart from that, they might also identify problematic appliances that you will then have to replace to keep your energy expenditure low. You can also do your own research to find energy saving features you can focus on in your home.
Upgrade to Energy Star Certified Appliances
When buying appliances, you want affordable and durable items that work hard. However, the cost of an appliance is more than just its price tag in the store. You also need to consider its energy efficiency and how much it will cost you to use and maintain it. Experts suggest that Energy Star certified appliances are the best when it comes to energy saving products for homes.
But how much will you really save? Most people wonder if these appliances are really worth the hype. According to experts, Energy Star appliances can save up to 50% of the energy required to operate. They can even save more if you are replacing an older appliance. Appliances with this label are used in many types of energy saving homes to save energy, money, and the environment.
Upgrade to Better Lighting Options
Statistics show that the average home has around 45 sockets or bulbs, 60% of which are inefficient. Therefore, when making home improvements for energy efficiency, this is another area you will want to take a look at. Switching all your bulbs out for more efficient LED models will take you less than a day. By making that simple change, you will need up to 90% less energy for your lighting. Also, Energy Star certified LED bulbs could last up to 15 times longer than the standard bulbs.
Apart from upgrading your bulbs, you can also take a look at how natural light can help make your home more energy efficient. Taking advantage of natural lighting can reduce reliance on electricity. Consider installing skylights and larger windows so you can have more direct sunlight coming into your home. This is a technique used in passive solar types of energy saving homes.
Seal or Change Your Doors and Windows
A lot of the energy used in your home goes towards heating and cooling. Therefore, it makes sense to ensure that energy is not wasted in these processes. Old doors and windows that aren’t properly insulated can cause drafts, making your home less energy efficient. To counter this, you can add weather stripping or caulking around your windows. However, sealing the frame alone may not be enough if you have older single-pane windows. With such windows, the best option would be to replace them with newer ones.
Newer types of windows are the best energy saving features that will keep the temperature inside your home regulated because they don’t let hot or cold air escape. Consider installing windows with wood frames or wood-clad frames, as these are the best when it comes to insulating your home. They might be a little bit more costly than initially, but they will save you more money in the long run.
Insulate Your Walls
Filling your walls with insulation is a cost-effective method used in many types of energy saving homes. This move will help you retain heat in your home and lessen the load for your HVAC. Statistics show that about a third of the heat loss in your home probably occurs through walls.
Wall insulation is probably one of the home improvement projects with the highest return on investment. You will probably be able to recover the cost of insulating your walls in five years or less. All of that is accounted for by the yearly energy bill savings you’ll make by having adequately insulated walls!
Depending on the material used to make your walls, insulating them might have an even more dramatic impact. Experts suggest that solid walls lead to twice as much heat loss as cavity walls. Therefore, when you insulate a solid wall, you will save even more energy.
Repair or Replace Your Roof
When thinking of energy saving house features, your roof must be the center of attention. Your roof takes on the job of protecting you from harsh weather elements. As it gets old, it also becomes less efficient at doing its job. If your roof is more than 20 years old, replacing it might just make your home more energy efficient. Roof upgrades are recommended in many types of energy saving homes.
Hot air rises; therefore, it makes sense that a lot of the heat loss on your home occurs through the roof. About a quarter of the heat loss in most homes is accounted for by the attic or roof of a home. If there are cracks in your roof or missing shingles, there will be a significant amount of heat leaving through your roof. To find out how much heat is being lost through your roof, you can check out your home’s infrared heat map. This scan will enable you to identify the areas in your roof and attic that are letting heat escape. From there, you can decide whether it makes sense to repair your roof or replace it entirely.
Once you decide you need to replace your roof, take time to pick materials and a roof color that will have the greatest impact on your energy efficiency. Getting a reflective roof will help keep temperatures low in your home and prevent you from cranking up the AC each time it’s blazing hot outside.
Install Solar Panels
Installing solar panels is a major investment that can also have a major impact on your home’s energy efficiency. This is an effective move used in energy efficient home design, especially if your roof has sufficient exposure to the sun. Over time, the price of solar energy saving products for homes and other system components has dropped by 40% to 80%.
Before you consider making this improvement, you must also ensure that your roof is able to bear the weight of solar panels. If it can’t, another option would be to lay them directly on the ground.
Installing solar panels makes your home less dependent on the national grid. Apart from that, these panels produce clean energy, and they don’t release any emissions. It is important that you take time to find ones that have the highest efficiency rates as these also need the least amounts of space. Most of these panels are quite durable, and they come with warranties.
When your home reaches optimal energy efficiency levels, your utility bills will go down, and your home will be environmentally friendly. What do you think of our energy efficiency improvements? If you are looking to make these upgrades in your home and you need help, get in touch with us to find out how we can assist you.