Let's Save Some Energy AND Some Money
Every homeowner ponders ways to lower their energy bills. Energy bills can get exorbitantly high during the cold winters and hot summers. If you can find ways to keep your home at an optimal temperature, you’ll be able to reduce your heating and cooling costs. Finding those methods and exploiting them is the real issue. Sure, there are energy audits, but unless they’re being performed by a professional, the results you get may be a little off, or possible even completely wrong. Following a few tips we’ll provide today can give you a leg up on your electricity or gas costs, and save some serious dough. Like starting a business, you’ll need some money, but the majority of these solutions are cost effective and even the more expensive ones will save you in the long run.
Be Sure Your Walls are Insulated
This probably sounds like a painfully obvious tip. However, throughout the early 90’s and well into the 2000’s, during the housing boom, many contractors, in order to make the cost of building homes more inexpensive, by using subpar insulations and some just started forgoing insulation in walls altogether. If your walls are finished do not fear! There are a couple ways you can still get insulation inside these walls. You might have to use some elbow grease, though. Seeing as how your walls comprise the majority of outer surface are of your home, it’s very important that they be insulated, and insulated properly. All that is required is you make a small hole in each of the panels you intend to insulate, using a hole saw or something that will allow you to have beveled edges in your holes. You can then take the hose included in your spray-in insulation kit (typically a rental). Generally make your holes near the top of the wall so the insulation will fill what was previously empty. You can plug the holes by using the pieces you cut out before and applying some drywall tape and/or joint compound. Other handy tips for insulating finished walls may be found here.
Seal Your Doors
A proper seal on your door can save you up to 30% on your heating costs. Having small leaks that allow warm air to escape and cool air to enter can be the equivalent of throwing cash out the door. Clearly, that’s a figure of speech, but be sure to check all doors for air leaks, and seal the outside door frame with weatherproof caulk, and to ensure your inside air stays inside, add weather stripping to your door jamb. Sometimes your door can be the problem and you may have to purchase a new door. If that’s the case, you might want to do research to see which exterior doors have the best ratings for insulation and security.
Get Double or Triple Paned Windows
The technology these windows employ is elementary at best, but it’s not less ingenious. The two panes of glass are built with air in-between them to form a vacuum that allows no air in or out. This essentially acts as invisible insulation that gives your home the outside view and light you want, while giving you the insulation your home needs. Though these windows are clearly a more expensive option, many of them have the luxury of either a tax write-off or government rebate. Be sure to look for the Energy Star certified sticker on products like these.
By following one or all of these simple steps you can keep your bills low and your temperature high enough to keep you comfortable.