Older homes can be romantic and beautiful, but they can also be very costly to maintain. If you own an older home, there’s a good chance that you’re spending too much on your monthly utilities. Air leaks, drafts, inefficient appliances and other problems can all raise the cost of electricity. Fortunately, there are many home improvements that can reduce your electric bill and save money over time. If you want to learn how to lower the electric bill in an older home, read on!
Replace the Windows
Drafty windows can leave your home feeling cold in the winter and hot in the summer, which forces your air conditioner and furnace to work long, hard hours over many months. Replacing your home’s old windows with modern, ENERGY STAR models can reduce your home’s utility bills by as much as $465 annually. To go the extra mile, ask your window replacement company about features like the low-E coatings. Low-E coatings can help keep heat in or out, depending on the time of year.
New windows can make your home more efficient and reduce your utility costs. To find out more, contact us at Window Nation. We sell beautiful windows that can match the look and feel of your older home.
Replace the Front Door
Replacing the front door can cut back on drafts in the living room, foyer and adjoining areas, and can also help improve your home’s insulation. Insulated steel and fiberglass doors are best for improving your home’s efficiency. For best results and a tighter fit, have the door professionally installed.
Beef Up the Insulation
Your home’s insulation may have been adequate at the time when your home was built, but times have changed. Improving the insulation in your attic can reduce your home’s heating and cooling bill, which accounts for 50 to 70 percent of the energy consumption in your home. To improve your home’s insulation, lay fiberglass batts of insulation directly over the joists in the attic. Install the batts in a perpendicular direction over the joists to prevent the new insulation from compressing the older insulation.
Seal Air Leaks in the HVAC System
Air leaks in the HVAC system can cause your home’s air conditioner and heater to work much harder than necessary to heat and cool your home. For a DIY approach, use a theatrical fog machine to blow fog through the ducts of your home. Watch the joints of the ducts for smoke leaks. Seal the leaks with duct caulk, then replace any cloth-backed duct tape with foil-backed duct tape. When you’re finished, wrap the ducts in R-6 foil-faced insulation, taped closed with duct tape. Sealing the ducts in your HVAC system can improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system by up to 20 percent.
Replace Old Appliances
Replacing your old appliances with new appliances can improve your home’s efficiency because older appliances tend to run longer and waste more electricity than modern appliances. When replacing your home’s appliances, look for the ENERGY STAR label, because these appliances will be the most efficient models on the market today.
Tune Up Your HVAC System
Old air conditioners and heaters often don’t work as well as they did when they were new. Getting an annual tune-up by a heater and air conditioner repair person can help keep your air conditioner and heater running efficiently. Have your HVAC system completely examined and (if necessary) repaired every winter to ensure maximum efficiency.
Looking for More Resources on Making Your Home Energy Efficient?
If you are looking for even more information on how to lower the electric bill in an older home, be sure to check out our other resources and blog posts:
How do energy efficient windows work?
Energy efficient glass options
How a new door adds energy efficiency
Window Nation’s Green Products