7 Tips for a More Earth-Friendly and Energy-Efficient Home
With the celebration of Earth Day a few weeks ago and spring cleaning on the minds of a lot of homeowners, it’s an ideal time to make homes more earth-friendly and energy efficient. The truth is, with only a few small, inexpensive changes, homeowners could be on their way to saving 20% or more on monthly energy bills. Here, the home-efficiency professionals from share techniques on how to start saving now.
1. Use a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat usually saves between 12% to 23% on a power bill, and it’s also a remarkable tool to cut down on carbon emissions from a home. How is that possible? Smart thermostats provide more functions than just programming the time of day for the heating or cooling system to turn on or off. Several smart thermostats are intuitive and can recognize changes in energy usage patterns and home activity. They can also be programmed from another location, and can be programmed to send a notification to homeowners about changes that may cause a major increase to their energy bill.
“This technology saves you money and also makes life easier,” said Service Experts’ Lisa Lange. “It’s a low-cost way to improve energy efficiency in your home immediately.”
2. Hire a Professional to Perform a Heating and Cooling System Tune-up
Before the summer heat arrives, another eco-friendly move is to set up an air-conditioning system tune-up. Routine maintenance will help homeowners avoid significant repairs during the busy season for HVAC technicians and a system that performs optimally minimizes reliance on fossil fuel energy sources.
A routine servicing involves cleaning all of the system’s key components, in addition to testing and making adjustments to the unit’s operating system. In addition to checking refrigerant levels and replacing clogged or dirty air filters, the outdoor condenser should also be cleaned and checked.
“During your tune-up, it’s a great time to tap the expertise of an HVAC pro,” explained Lisa Lange. “We encourage customers to ask about thermostat settings, when to change air filters and bring any other questions they may have about the energy efficiency of their home.”
3. Add Insulation
Putting insulation in a home is an earth-friendly tip that could help save up to 20% on a utility bill. In many households, air gets out through attics, crawl spaces and basements. If a room is drafty and has trouble keeping a consistent temperature, it may be time to examine the building’s attic insulation. Cold floors could also be a sign that basement insulation isn’t at the level you really need. All of these concerns also lead to increased energy consumption, which leads to more carbon emissions.
“Many homeowners are surprised when they learn their home is under-insulated, but it’s actually quite common,” said Lange. “The good news is that, just like a smart thermostat, you can see the utility cost savings from this decision very quickly. You will also take comfort in knowing that you are helping improve our environment through reduced emissions.
4. Make Sure Your Residence Is Airtight
Windows, ductwork, light sockets and weather stripping around doors are all areas of the home susceptible to leaks and heat loss or gain (in summer, no one wants steamy air seeping in). Let Earth Day be a cue to green up these areas of the house by making some simple repairs. Replacing old weather stripping and caulking around windows are two inexpensive tasks that are relatively easy to tackle, said Lange, and will lower the load on HVAC systems and the electrical grid too.
5. Use An Energy Zoning System
To formulate a comfort zoning system for a home, a certified HVAC specialist identifies zones in a house based on its layout, sun exposures and the amount of energy demand different areas have. The HVAC pro can then design a system that correctly distributes air in the home balancing comfort and energy efficiency. These systems commonly use several thermostats and adjustments to the ductwork. When joined with a smart thermostat, they can drastically improve comfort, save customers more than 30% on their energy bill and noticeably reduce a home’s greenhouse gas emissions.
“How many times in a day do we heat or cool a room no one is using? It happens all the time, and it adds up to significant energy waste, and these systems are an optimal solution,” Lange said.
6. Buy Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs
If a homeowner’s spending plan doesn’t permit for major upgrades, replacing regular incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient LEDs is an affordable eco-friendly decision with a big impact on the environment. Most LEDs will last up to seven years and use about 90% less power than traditional bulbs.
7. Use Solar Energy
With some 30% in federal tax credits available to lower the expense of a solar installation, there may never be a better time to install one on a home. Over their lifetime, these quality energy-producing systems can produce an average savings of about $60,000 and greatly reduce a household’s overall carbon footprint.
“We have the best program in the country. Our experts will develop an energy savings plan that will help you get the most out of your system and show you’re making a direct positive impact on the environment,” Lange said.
For more information about tips to make a home more energy efficient, visit Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing today.
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