Energy. It seems to be the word that everyone is talking about lately. Whether you are talking about your own personal energy or the amount that you and your household use, it matters. Having an energy efficient home is beneficial to your budget and can also increase your home’s curb appeal. Heating and cooling our homes costs almost one half of our utility dollars. Doing all that you can to decrease that amount can be as simple as changing a few things that you do or replacing some parts of your home. Here are 5 ways that you can increase your home’s energy efficiency:
Replace your windows and doors. Windows and doors are a beautiful and intricate part of your home. Unfortunately, they are really just holes in the walls. How well these are manufactured and installed makes a huge difference as to how well they perform. Installation must be correct. If your windows or doors are not properly installed, unwanted air exchange happens. This cools or warms your home when you don’t want it to.
Older, warped and damaged windows and doors are letting air exchange happen by a few ways.
- Their frame may not be solid anymore allowing air and moisture to literally come in through the window frame itself. A warped window frame will also not sit in its opening snug anymore, which also allows unwanted air and moisture to come in.
- The glazing and seals on glass in windows and doors can break down and fail over the years and this too is an entry point for air and moisture.
- The weather stripping on older windows and doors can also become thin, torn and compressed which makes it less than ideal for a good seal against the outdoor weather.
We suggest to start by repairing any damaged weather stripping on doors. Weather stripping and door sweeps become dirty, compressed and damaged over the years. Replacing them can be a simple and inexpensive way to make them an airtight opening again.
Add a storm door. Adding a storm door to your entrance doors is also a great way to make your home more energy efficient. Storm doors perform a double duty for you home. In the cooler seasons, a storm door will add another shield against the cold weather and in the warmer months you can open your entry door and use the screen option for ventilation. Today’s storm doors are attractive, durable and can complement the exterior style of any home.
Check your attic for the amount of insulation that is there. Most people don’t go into their attic on a regular basis. Be sure to check it for any damage that rogue rodents may have done and for the integrity of the insulation. Insulation in your attic is a like having a blanket to hold the heat down in your home.
Regular system maintenance on HVAC systems. Having them cleaned and maintained on a regular basis keeps them running at optimum performance. Have your whole HVAC system cleaned, from the actual unit, through the chimney and into the ventilation ducts. A clean system operates on less energy.
As fall moves through this year, and winter quickly approaches, take time to do what you can to lessen the amount on energy that your home uses.