A homeowner should get home improvements that save the most money on energy costs. Home improvements can also increase the value of a home with the right upgrades. Here are some of the home upgrades every homeowner should consider.
1. Install a smart thermostat
A programmable thermostat lets you control a room’s temperature according to your family’ activities. The new technology allows you to set your desired temperature remotely. Also, it turns itself off when there is no human activity in a particular room for a certain period. This smart thermostat saves a lot of energy compared to other non-programmable thermostats.
2. Seal air leaks
With air leaks, hot air gets in during the summer while cold air slips in during winter. To regulate your home temperature, you waste a lot of energy. You can save a lot of energy expenditure by sealing all air leaks around the house. Sometimes drafts around the house are evidence of air leaks. Use caulk, spray foam and weather stripping to seal floors, doors, windows and walls around the house.
If your windows and doors are over a decade old, it is better to replace them with newer, more efficient models. When replacing windows, get double-paned versions with a u-factor of .22-.23. The lower the u-factor, the better insulation the window offers. Energy-efficient windows can save you up to $100 annually on utility bills.
3. Upgrade home appliances
As a homeowner, always replace older versions of appliances with more energy-efficient ones. For instance, if you live in Canada you can get a new air conditioner in Ottawa after free consultation at Climate Works. You get to save money on repairs when you get better models of any home appliances. There are payment plans such as PACE financing options that help cover high upgrades essential to your home.
Additionally, you should be aware of the life expectancy of all your appliances. They tend to be less energy-efficient towards the end of their lifetimes. When replacing your home appliances, always buy brands with the energy star seal of approval. Also, get fixtures that are easily repaired and maintained to save on month-to-month costs.
4. Energy-efficient lighting
If you are still using standard bulbs, you might consider switching to LED bulbs. Studies show that 75% of energy costs accumulate from switched-off bulbs and sockets. However, LED models consume up to 90% less energy than other bulbs. Save energy by upgrading your lighting system as you add value to your home. In addition, LED bulbs last 15 times longer than standard bulbs, which makes them even more cost-effective.
5. Add extra layers of insulation
The US Department of Energy issued a fact sheet to help all homeowners gauge the level of insulation in their homes. Poor insulation dictates more energy to regulate temperature. Newer homes come installed with proper insulation, but older homes need an extra layer, especially in the attic. Since hot air rises, the attic is a huge culprit in terms of heat loss in the house.
Adding an extra layer of insulation in the attic can reduce the house’s energy costs during winter. Insulation in the crawlspaces, basements and exterior walls can help keep either cool or warm air in, and the extra layer of insulation thereby helps the overall comfort of your home. Do plenty of research to find the best ways and materials to insulate your home.
Invest in getting a Home Energy Ratings System (HERS) index rating. An experienced auditor will come to your home and calculate its efficiency. It is better to know where your home can benefit from home improvements to save the most energy.
All your home improvement upgrades should also be friendly to the environment. There are numerous ways to preserve the environment while saving on energy costs in your home.