ENERGY EFFICIENCY – Heating, A/C and Windows
Here are some ideas which will Save You Money on Utility Bills and Help Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions:
Get an Inspection:
The idea is to keep the outside air from leaking inside, and the inside air from escaping outside! Inspect your home thoroughly for drafts and other leaks. You can also have it professionally inspected by a bonded, insured and certified Home Inspector. Check windows and doors for drafts and caulk where necessary. Inspect the electrical outlets for drafts. If you feel a draft, install gaskets behind the outlets. Also, make sure heating/cooling ducts are wrapped in insulation.
Heating and Air Conditioning:
Install a high efficiency furnace and cooling system with a programmable thermostat. Set the thermostat to 68% in the winter and 78% in the summer. As gas and electricity prices increase, energy bills keep rising. The average household spends $615 each year on heating and cooling. Using an Energy Star qualified programmable thermostat can save up to 33% on heating and cooling per year. This will prevent enough CO2 emissions to equal removing 600 cars from the road a year.
You don’t have to freeze to be “Green”. But by simply adjusting your thermostat up a few degrees in the Summer and down a few degrees in the Winter, you will save about $114 on your energy bill and will keep 2 1/2 tons of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere (based on a 1500 sq ft home). During the winter months, for every degree you turn the heat down you’ll reduce your energy bill by 5%! According to the Department of Energy, lowering your thermostat in the Winter by just one degree, you can save up to $40 a year. And in the Summer, save 3% off your bill for every degree you turn the thermostat up. If you install a programmable thermostat, you can set it to turn your home temperature up or down when you’re at work or sleeping, saving around $150 a year while keeping more than 2 tons of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.
By rotating ceiling fans clockwise in summer and counterclockwise in winter, warm air is pushed down in cool months and pulled up in warm ones.
New Energy Star qualified windows can help reduce your energy bill dramatically. You can save $125 – $450 a year when replacing single pane windows, or a $25 – $110 a year when replacing double pane clear glass windows. These windows contain low-emission (low-E) glass. Low-E glass is made with a metallic coating on the inside of the insulated glass unit which lowers the window’s ability to transfer heat and saves energy. Without compromising visibility, the low-E coating reduces fading by up to 75% by reflecting the long-wave light rays that carry heat and UV.
Insulate your windows from heat & cold with Insulated Curtain Liners. No need to go out and buy new curtains. A liner can be put behind any existing curtain to make them energy-smart . This will help you save on heating & air conditioning bills by keeping your room warmer in winter & cooler in summer. This “look” also adds “heft” to your existing curtains which can make them look more expensive. Check out Thermalsuede Liners.
USE ENERGY-SAVING WINDOW SHADES
Believe it or not, bamboo shades are thermal and help insulate your windows from heat and cold. They are also a “rapidly renewable” material as opposed to wood (bamboo grows almost as fast as you can cut it). Using any products made of bamboo rather than wood will help reduce our carbon footprint by saving energy & trees.