Almost every homeowner wants to make his/her home as energy efficient as possible. The main idea is not only to reduce energy bills but also contribute to reducing carbon footprint among other factors. Energy efficient homes are also valued at a higher cost as compared to non-efficient ones, a factor realtors and those in the property market take very seriously. The decision to make your home energy efficient doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend huge sums of money on the upgrades.
Simple deeds such as replacing the old refrigerator with a new energy-star rated one, working on insulations, and using a programmable thermostat can go a long way in lowering energy bills. Some of the most recommended (simple) upgrades that can help increase electrical efficiency in your home are outlined below. Talk to local Warren electrical contractor Valewood Electric about these 5 steps below if you are serious about lowering your energy bills.
1. Work on Proper, Adequate, and Effective Insulation
Upgrading your home’s insulation is the first step to improving energy efficiency and reducing energy bills. You may, however, have to find an energy auditor to inspect the house to determine what can be done to reduce heat gain/loss. A properly insulated house is not only easy to keep cool during hot summer days but also keeps the house warm during winter. Adequate insulation prevents heat loss in cold weather hence recommended for all. Experts recommend having a certified/experienced contractor insulate your home, and ensure every part of the house (the attic, walls, etc.) is worked on properly.
2. Invest in Energy Efficient Windows and Doors
Old and leaky windows contribute significantly to heat loss and gain and should be fixed to reduce electrical appliance strain. If possible, upgrade these windows with weather-stripped and high energy-efficient models. Double or triple-glazed windows are considered the best choice for they prevent heat gain/loss in the house. Aluminum windows and doors are not only energy efficient but also do last much longer than other varieties in the market today. You can also make a custom order for all these energy efficient windows and doors to suit your needs. All you need is find a good supplier/manufacturer to place an order with.
3. Replace All Bulbs with CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Lamps) or LED Bulbs
Although this may not seem like much, replacing incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps can help reduce energy used for lighting by up to 80%. The best thing about CFLs is that they are easy to get and also do last a lot longer than incandescent bulbs. CFLs can also be used to supplement natural light during the light without affecting the room temperature during the day.
4. Replace Old Electrical Appliances with Energy-Star Rated Ones
Most electrical appliances more than 7 years old aren’t energy star rated and consume much more power than the newly advanced ones. Some of the appliances you should consider replacing with more energy efficient ones include heat pump water heaters, refrigerators, HVAC systems, TV sets, hot water systems, and old furnaces. Investing in the new programmable thermostats for your HVAC system would also be a wise step too. Be sure to go for the highest rated electrical appliance when shopping for one. The higher the rating an appliance is; the more energy it conserves in the process. You can also have an electrical contractor help you determine the best and most energy efficient appliances for your house.
5. Invest in Solar Power and Solar Water Heaters
Much of every household’s energy goes into keeping the house warm, ventilation, heating water, and running electrical appliances. Take advantage of solar energy to power most of these applications such lighting, water heaters, and running the HVAC system can help reduce your energy bills significantly. Although the initial cost of investing in a solar panel system may be high, overall and long-term savings from the same are much higher. With proper care and regular maintenance, a solar system can last more than 25 years, with most systems having a lifetime guarantee. In addition to this, you can have the excess electricity generated pushed into the main grid, hence more savings on your end.
Following the home upgrade, recommendations outlined above will not only help increase electrical efficiency in your home but also contribute to lower energy bills. Having a solar system in your house can also reduce your dependence on the main power grid by up to 90%. Most people with solar systems only use the main electricity supply to run heavy applications such as the freezer, refrigerator, etc. Proper insulation also helps lower heating and ventilation bills too. You also need to invest in the latest/programmable thermostat to optimize energy savings. Investing in an automatic electrical system that turns everything off once there’s no activity in the house is another innovative way to cut down energy wastage. As indicated earlier, have a certified energy auditor help determine areas that need to be worked on to make your home more energy efficient.
If you are looking for any other tips regarding saving on electricity, check out Valewood Electric’s Youtube Channel for any of your energy saving needs.