July 29

4 Affordable Ways to Improve Your Home’s Energy Efficiency

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4 Affordable Ways to Improve Your Home's Energy Efficiency

When it comes to your homes energy efficiency, the situation can feel helpless. Most of us are completely out of our depth when it comes to the subject, and generally, we tend to think that the solution comes with a price tag in the thousands.

However, that's not always the case. There are plenty of affordable solutions that can make a noticeable impact, and you don't have to be an expert to get it done.

Air Flow

One of the most important things when it comes to your homes energy efficiency is air flow. Setting up an HVAC service plan is a good first step. Most of the time, an HVAC system starts wearing down because it isn't receiving routine maintenance. It's a lot cheaper to keep up on an HVAC system than it is to replace it. Once you know what your situation looks like, you can start making a plan.

A simple way to keep the place cool without relying solely on your air conditioner is with fans. It might seem obvious, but fans really can make a huge difference. Placement, though, is paramount. Keeping your fan in a place where the flow is unobstructed is crucial, and the higher the fan, the more difference it's going to make.

Sealing It Up

Every energy efficient home has something in common: they're all sealed very well. Choosing the right exterior doors is important in reducing those small air leaks; the same with choosing the right windows. If you do find a leak, sealing it is cheap and easy.

An extra step you can take with windows, especially if you don't want to replace them, is to install storm windows. It's far less expensive than replacing them, and they can make a huge difference in keeping the windows sealed.

Going the Extra Step

As it turns out, according to the Alliance to Save Energy, about half of the homes in the US are under-insulated. Making sure your house has the right amount of insulation is important, but there are other things that can be done, too. The color of your house can play a factor; if you live in a warmer climate, a lighter house won't store as much heat. In a colder climate, a darker house will help store heat in the winter.

Something else you can do is plant deciduous trees, specifically on the west side of your home. In the summer, the leaves will block some of the infrared radiation that would warm your house, but in the winter, those leaves are gone, letting the radiation help to keep your house a bit warmer.

Equipment

Lastly, there's some equipment that can help the situation. The right flooring plays a factor; carpet helps to hold heat, while a smoother floor tends to keep cooler. Installing a skylight in the proper place can help keep a room warm in the winter. You can also replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps, keeping your home bright while using a fraction of the energy.

These are just a few of the things you can do to help improve your homes energy efficiency. There's a plethora of research out there, right at your fingertips. And rest assured, your electricity bill will thank you for your effort.

 


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