Home improvement and home repair tips: On The House with the Carey Bros. & Rebecca Cole.
* Home
* What's New
* Tip of the Day
* Weekly Project
* Monthly E-Newsletter
* Q & A
* Features
* Radio Show
* About the Bros.
* Contests & Promotions
* Our Partners
* Mailing Lists
* Contact Us
* Employment Opportunities
* Affiliate Toolbox
Buy our Books!

Search for the answer
 Friday, July 20th, 2018

Things you can do to make
your home more energy efficient

  1. Drafts can enter a house at a variety of locations, adding 10 percent or more to your energy bills. For a quick fix, caulk around windows and doorframes to minimize air infiltration. Try an easy-to-use, acrylic caulk, such as Polyseamseal All-Purpose Adhesive Caulk for a durable, weather-resistant seal.
  2. Install a programmable thermostat. According to the Department of Energy, a programmable thermostat can save five to thirty percent of your heating and cooling bill by automatically adjusting the thermostat setting at night or at times when your home is unoccupied, saving you about $100 per year. For the most versatility and energy savings potential, look for a programmable thermostat that has up to four programming day parts and programming options for weekdays and weekends.
  3. As temperatures drop furnaces work longer hours. In fact, a furnace can run for up to 20 hours a day during the winter months. To ensure top performance, safety and efficiency, homeowners should hire a licensed HVAC technician to perform routine service and maintenance. Another option for homeowners is to upgrade to a high-efficiency model that will conserve both energy and cash. While standard furnaces have an annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) of 80 percent, high-efficiency models like Bryant's Evolution Plus 90i™ feature a record setting AFUE of up to 96.6 percent. This ensures consumers that, in addition to financial savings, the maximum amount of heat is going into their home.
  4. Speaking of your HVAC, make sure you clean your central heating system and replace the filter.
  5. Sealing even the smallest gaps, cracks and penetrations around your home can have a dramatic impact on your energy savings and home comfort. Great Stuff™ Insulating Foam Sealant is perfect for sealing and insulating the places where heat and cool air escape.
  6. Block drafts from entering under doors by using a rubber seal, such as Duck brand Adhesive Door Bottom Seal.
  7. The average forced-air duct system loses about 30 percent of the energy produced by the furnace or air conditioner in the course of distributing air to the rooms. This energy loss can be reduced by sealing duct joints with products like Polyseamseal® Red High Temp Silicone or Polyseamseal® 100% Silicone Sealant.
  8. 30 percent of a home’s heat escapes through windows, which translates into a 50-75 percent increase in fuel bills. For an inexpensive way to insulate your windows, try Duck brand’s Roll-On Window Insulator Kit. These kits are easy to install on a variety of window sizes with no measuring, and cover your windows with a transparent film to help keep warm air inside and cold air out.
  9. Add insulation. Insulation is designed to resist heat flow. Thus, if it is hot outside, insulation greatly reduces the amount of heat you can feel inside a house. By the same token, if it is cold outside, insulation helps keep the heat inside the house. Johns Manville offers a complete line of formaldehyde-free fiber glass building insulation that improves indoor air quality for you and your family.
  10. Use fiberglass entry doors (like the ones made by Therma-Tru). They offer five times the insulation of real wood. And because they don’t shrink, they virtually eliminate air infiltration problems.
  11. Install energy efficient lighting: Compact Fluorescent Lamps provide bright, warm light while requiring 75% less energy than standard incandescent lighting and last up to 13 times longer.
    The Home Depot offers the new n:vision line, provided by TCP, Inc., in a variety of soft white, bright white and day light energy efficient light bulbs. All n:vision energy efficient bulbs last 8,000 hours. Homeowners who replace their 10 most frequently used light bulbs with the energy efficient light bulbs can save more than $100 per year in energy costs.
  12. Try installing low-flow shower heads for only about $20 apiece. Each one saves $40 a year if you have a gas water heater and $80 if you have an electric. Lowering your water heater temperature by 10 degrees can save 10% on hot water bills.
  13. Be sure to close your dampers when you’re not using your fireplace as air currents in the home increase when the damper is left open.
  14. Install a new garage door. In addition to insulation, a steel garage door (like the Wayne Dalton model 9700) has a bottom weather seal that blocks drafts and helps save energy. It remains flexible to keep the bad weather outside.
  15. Caulk seams and cracks and replace any missing mortar on the exterior of your home. The perfect product for this job is PL Polyurethane Roof & Flashing Sealant.
  16. Wrap your water heater and pipes: Putting an insulating wrap on your water heater can reduce your water heating costs. Water heater blankets usually cost $10-$20 and are available at hardware stores and home improvement centers. Wrapping water pipes with prefabricated neoprene insulation will prevent the water temperature within pipes from dropping so radically, reducing the amount of energy needed to raise the water temperature and improving comfort.
  17. To see if your current windows are a good “fit” the experts at Simonton Windows recommend you have someone stand outside your windows at night. With a small flashlight, stand inside and “travel” around the window’s perimeter. If the person outside sees areas of light coming through, this indicates seal failure --- a probably energy loss. This is the ideal time to consider replacement windows.
  18. If you have determined it’s time to replace your windows, make certain to specify ENERGY STAR® compliant windows from Simonton for your geographic area. ENERGY STAR estimates that families spend an average of $1,900 a year heating and cooling their homes. Windows and doors meeting ENERGY STAR regulations can help reduce those energy bills!
  19. Throughout 2006 and 2007, when you replace your windows with ENERGY STAR compliant windows, you may be eligible for up to a $200 tax credit from the I.R.S. Under the Energy Policy Act of 2005, homeowners receive financial incentives when they replace existing windows with energy-efficient windows. Visit www.energystar.gov for more information.
  20. Evaluate the condition of your windows at the change of every season. Check for hot and cold spots or drafty areas inside your home near windows, which can indicate energy loss. Make sure there’s adequate weather stripping and caulking around windows to ensure a secure seal around the openings in your home. And, seal up little cracks or gaps where air can leak into your home. Many experts believe the average home has enough of these small holes to equal one three-foot by three-foot opening.
  21. Install a Rinnai tankless water heater and you will enjoy endless energy efficient hot water. Tankless systems only heat water when needed and are up to 50% more energy efficient than traditional tank type heaters and can reduce your water heating bills by 40%!
  22. Install energy efficient exhaust fan/lights that use 65% less energy on average than standard models. ENERGY STAR qualified Broan® and NuTone® Ultra Silent™ fan/lights are not only energy efficient, they are more than 50% quieter than standard fans. An energy efficient, ultra quiet fan is much more likely to be used to keep your home healthy.

Energy Saving TipsList of PrizesPromotion RulesRegistration Form
On The House Media © 1996-2018 All Rights Reserved.