Energy Saving at Home

Insulation and Air Sealing

A major source of energy saving at home is ensuring your home has proper insulation and that all cracks where cool air from the outside can put a chill in the air, or warm air from the outside can make your air conditioner work harder.

Here are twenty tips to help you keep cool air where it belongs and warm air where it belongs - and save energy and money keeping your home comfortable.

Energy Saving Tip # 36

When you replace windows, make sure they are installed correctly to avoid air leaks around the frame.  A qualified reputable installer will make sure the job is done right.

Energy Saving Tip # 37

For moderate climate areas of the world where you will both heat and cool your home, you will want to choose windows with low U-Factor or U-Value (heat transmission – both in and out) and low solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC – amount of solar heat that is passed through the window) for the best energy benefits.

Energy Saving Tip # 38

Look for windows that have air leakage of less than 0.3 cubic feet per minute.

Energy Saving Tip # 39

Remember, the lower the U-Factor or U-Value, the better the insulation. In colder climates, a U-Factor of 0.35 or below is recommended. Windows like this will be at least double glazed and, in addition, will usually have a low-e coating.

Energy Saving Tip # 40

Shopping for new windows? Keep an eye out for look for The National Fenestration Rating Council label.  This means the window performance has been certified to meet the advertised specs.

Energy Saving Tip # 41

New high-performance windows can improve your home's energy savings, improve the looks of your house, and may very well increase the resale value.  It may take quite a while for the payback if you are planning to stay in your home for years to come, but the improved look and savings on heating and cooling costs will be well worth the investment.

Energy Saving Tip # 42

Sun-control reflective films added to south-facing windows will reduce solar heat gain and reduce cooling costs.

Energy Saving Tip # 43

Awnings are a beautiful addition to south and west-facing windows and keep the sun from heating your home during the summer – and during cooler months, can be raised to allow the sun’s heat to warm the home to save more energy..

Energy Saving Tip # 44

During the day, close the curtains on sunny south and west-facing windows to help keep the sun out.

Energy Saving Tip # 45

White window shades, drapes, or blinds will also reflect heat away from the house in the warmer months, and can be raised during the day in cooler months to take advantage of the sun.

Energy Saving Tip # 46

If you are not yet ready to replace your current windows with high performance windows, keep your storm windows in good repair and well weatherized.

Energy Saving Tip # 47

Storm windows can contribute greatly to reduced heat loss through the windows – maybe as much as 50%. They should have weather-stripping at all possible leakage points, be strong and durable, and have closely fitting interlocking or overlapping joints. And, of course, low-e storm windows will save you even more money.

Energy Saving Tip # 48

In cooler weather, windows on the south and west side of your home should be kept clean to let in the light and warmth of the winter sun.

Energy Saving Tip # 49

In cooler weather, close your curtains and shades at night to retain warmth, and open them during the day to let in more free heat from the sun.

Energy Saving Tip # 50

Tight-fitting, insulating window shades can add an extra layer of sealing to windows that may still feel drafty after you have taken other steps to weatherize.

Energy Saving Tip # 51

As another layer to keep the cold weather out, add heavy-duty clear plastic sheet to the inside of your window frames. Keep the plastic sealed tight to the frame to help reduce any cold air leakage.

Energy Saving Tip # 52

You can do your own energy check to find air leaks and to make sure you have the proper level of insulation. You may find air leaks at cracks around windows and doors, your mail chute, possible cracks in brick, masonry, or siding, space between the baseboard and walls, or you may find leaks where phone, cable, electric, and gas lines enter the home.

Energy Saving Tip # 53

You can easily test for air leaks on a windy day.  A lit candle held next to doors, windows, light fixtures, or electrical outlets will quickly show any leaks.  Seal any leaks with weather stripping or caulking.  This could save you quite a bit of money.

Energy Saving Tip # 54

Ensure that you have enough insulation in your attic, ceilings, exterior and basement walls, floors, and crawlspaces.  There are recommendations for your area.  This can also save you quite a bit of money.

Also for your whole house fan in the attic, sealing the shutters during cooler weather will save you energy and money.

Energy Saving Tip # 55

Storm windows over single-pane windows is a great first step with older homes, but replacing these older windows with windows will dramatically cut heat flowing out of the house, and cold air flowing in.  This will save you considerable money.  The Efficient Windows Collaborative estimates that ENERGY STAR®  windows can save as much as 40% compared to uncoated, single pane windows.

Energy Saving Tip # 56

Your fireplace chimney will allow a great deal of heat to escape the home when there is no fire.  Close the chimney dampers when not in use – don’t watch your money go up the chimney.

As you start planning the energy saving renovations to your home, you want to make sure you Get Matched to Pre-Screened Top-Rated Pros in Your Area! Compare bids and SAVE!