Consider having a home energy audit to assess how much energy your home consumes and where it’s coming from. Explore your home’s energy efficient potential through your evaluation. A home energy audit can potentially save you 5-30% of your energy bills. Obviously a professional home energy audit is the best course of action but there are some do-it-yourself measures that you can perform. Save energy by taking simple measures around your home and begin creating an energy efficient home.
Locate Air Leaks
Find air leaks through a crack or hole in or around doors or window. An under-the-door-draft may be fixed with a seal. The most common areas for air leaks to occur are where two different building materials meet. For example, inspect all exterior corners, outdoor faucets, where siding and other surfaces meet. Inside your home, the most common areas for air leaks are on electrical outlets, switch plates, vents/fans, door and window frames, baseboards, and attic hatches.
Once you identify air leaks, seal them with a plug or caulk holes or penetrations for faucets, pipes, electrical outlets, etc. Cracks in the foundation, siding, or mortar may create an air leak around windows or doors.
Insulations that are less than the recommended minimum will make way for higher energy prices. If you have an older home, your insulation may have been installed when there were different criteria. Check attics for a vapor barrier, this may be a plastic sheet, tarpaper, or Kraft paper attached to fiberglass batts.
Energy Star HVAC systems are widely available and recommended. Innovations have created a more sustainable way of cooling and heating your home. If you have a unit that is more than fifteen years old, it may be time to consider purchasing a new one. Always check your unit’s air filters, every month or as needed and have your unit checked and cleaned by a professional at least once a year.
Lighting accounts for 10% of you electric bill, according to Energy.gov. Consider the light bulbs you’re using and consider replacing them with a more energy efficient make. Energy saving lights include compact fluorescent lamps or LEDs.
A professional energy audit is always suggested and available. These simple suggestions however are a great start to a sustainable home.