Energy-efficient homes certified by Energy Star use an average of 20% less energy than their less-efficient counterparts, says USA Today. You may not be able to go right out and buy a new, certified home or replace all your appliances, but there are plenty of projects you can do around your home to make what you have more efficient. And the best part is you can do all these projects yourself.
According to Energy.gov, weatherization is a great way to make your home more comfortable while saving money. One of the first things you should do when you weatherize your home is to prevent air leaking — both outside air coming in and air-conditioned or heated air getting out. You can do this by caulking and replacing weather-stripping around doors, windows and pipes or wires that lead outside.
Inspect your insulation, adding more where necessary. Spray foam insulation is a great product that will fill any holes or voids where air is leaking. You can also put foam gaskets behind switch plates and place pliable door sweeps beneath doors to stop drafts.
Water Heater Optimization
Water heating costs make up 18% of your utility bill, says U.S. Green Building Council. Fortunately, there are a few easy things you can do to cut those costs. First, you can turn down the temperature of your hot water tank and/or strive to use less water. You can save $400 or more each year by turning down your thermostat 20 degrees.
You can also insulate your hot water heater. Place a water heater insulator on your tank and wrap all hot water lines in insulation. This will greatly reduce the amount of energy you waste due to unnecessary heat loss.
Exterior Storm Windows
Storm windows are one of the easiest, most cost-effective solutions for lowering energy costs. By installing low-e storm windows, you can save up to 33% in heating and cooling costs, says Energy.gov. E-storm windows work by stopping air leaks and infusing heat into the home via reflection.
Simple DIY projects, such as replacing weather strips, putting up storm windows and insulating water pipes, will make your home more energy efficient. What’s more, these projects are relatively inexpensive and don’t require special skills or tools to do. Don’t let your money go to waste — create a more energy-efficient home yourself for cheap.
~Here’s to Your Success!
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