There are several reasons why people have started to be aware of the use of the energy. It is possible to mention that energy costs are quite expensive and it has a negative impact on the environment, affecting not only the weather but the planet as a whole.
Energy efficiency upgrade can reduce your bill, as well as increase the value of your home. People are becoming more conscious of the benefits they could get from energy-efficiency. What is more, some of them are willing to pay more when buying a house that has been “green” upgraded.
How Much Energy do You Consume?
Before making any decisions or buying anything to your house, it would be wise to assess or audit the amount of energy you are currently consuming. From the diagnosis, you will be able to buy and adapt your place according to real needs. It would reveal which upgrades would be appropriate for home and your finances. An audit may also include an energy rating and how much it will increase if you upgrade.
Auditors and raters use tools that are specialized, and they possess certain skills to evaluate each home and recommend the most effective measure to improve costs and efficiency. Besides, the raters would provide independent verification of the quality of work. You might find some low-cost home assessment and quality inspectors.
This kind of evaluation might include a walk- through check-up or inspection with a camera, a blower door, or maybe others techniques that will reveal the best approach to upgrade your place.
Once you got all the information you need to make a conscious decision on how to improve your energy use, start by applying those changes which are affordable and tend to have a faster payoff.
How to Make my Home Greener
While general upgrades bring about positive changes in your life, going green has more to offer. It is clear that lighting represents almost a 10 % of your home energy costs so if you will be able to replace all the standard bulbs with compact fluorescents, you would probably save up to 75% of the energy and, as a consequence, save more money.
You can make your home energy efficient by fixing simple things. For instance, turn off the lights when you are not in a room, insulate the windows, try not to use the dishwasher a lot but instead wash your dishes by hand, especially when they are just a few. When doing a load of laundry make sure you have plenty of clothes to wash and not only some items.
Another change you can do is to adjust the heating and cooling system. You might use ventilation and air conditioning to reduce the amount of electricity. You can save around 30% if you replace your central air conditioning.
The temperature of the water heater can be turned down to warm setting and so improve the efficiency of the hot water system. Thus, if you insulate the hot water lines, they will not cool off quickly. You can use low-flow fixtures for showers and baths, as well.
If your house has a boiler and hot-water heat distribution, you might think about a modern condensing boiler with an outdoor rest to control and reduce the temperature circulation almost all the time.
As regards your windows, it might be a good idea to install vinyl windows. It is estimated that certified windows, as well as, doors and skylights can highly reduce your energy bill up to a 15%.
Get your walls and attic insulated; it might slow the rate of heat flow out in winter or in during summer so less energy would be required. It can improve your comfort and save enough power to be very cost- effective.
If you happen to live in a spacy house, plant trees all around it. This is effective if the house is old and the inside upgrades are not so easy to achieve because of structural problems.
As to the refrigerator, it is advisable to avoid old ones. Sometimes you might be tempted to use it as a backup when having a lot of people. It would represent a considerable amount of energy in comparison to a new one. The best way is to have just one refrigerator in the size you really need according to the use you and your family give to it.
Lastly, a new tendency in the market is to install solar panels. They will make your home energy- efficient by using the sun as a source of energy. Panels allow 10 hours of light (if they are fully charged, and you can use them for inside and outside illumination.
Some people have decided to add a thermostat in their homes to control the energy bill. A Programmed thermostat seems to be more effective than control appliances or electrical appliances to reduce use and costs.
People might think that it is difficult and sometimes, impossible, to be able to regulate the use of energy at home. However, it is not. You need to take precise measurements in order to make the best of it, reducing to only the amount of energy to protect the environment and the cost it represents in your bill. Having a “green” house might be beneficial if you know how to control and improve what you have.