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What You Need for a More Energy-Efficient Home

Feb 24, 2020

What You Need for a More Energy-Efficient Home

As climate change and sustainability become growing concerns, energy-efficient homes are becoming more popular than ever. And with the US accounting for one-fifth of the world’s energy consumption, the responsibility is on everyone to reduce their own environmental impact.

That being said, maintaining an energy-efficient home is a good place to start. Plus, it isn’t just better for the planet, as energy consumption makes up a substantial percentage of your utility bills. So, saving energy means saving money too and here’s what you need for a more energy-efficient home.

Insulation

Last year, the Environmental Protection Agency reported that the average household spends around $2,000 annually on utilities, with a whooping 30% of it going on heating. As such, the first step to an energy-efficient home is to work on the property’s insulation to ensure that it is able to naturally retain heat. One of the most effective methods is cavity wall insulation between the inner and outer layer of the property’s walls. The good news for homeowners is that they don’t have to knock anything down to install a layer of cavity wall insulation. ‘How to Install Cavity Wall Insulation’ published on HomeServe details how urea formaldehyde foam can be injected into the brickwork to create layer of insulation, and as it is a water based material, the mixing of two chemicals creates a foam that expands to create the filling. As a result, your central heating won’t have to work overtime to heat your home, thus saving you from higher bills and energy expenditure. Take note, however, that insulation isn’t a one-size-fits-all. It’s best to consult with a specialist to see what kind of insulation works best for your walls and home.

Tankless Water Heater

According to the US Energy Information Administration, water heating is one of the largest household consumers of energy, second only to space insulation. This is because conventional water tanks warm your water, even when you’re not using it. As such, it’s good to invest in a water heater that only turns on when necessary. A tankless water heater does the trick. The machine uses a series of coils (called a heat exchanger) to warm your water instantly, so it only operates when someone turns the tap.

Solar Energy

Energy from the sunbeams onto your home every day, even in winter and overcast days. So what could be more energy-efficient than taking advantage of this natural gift? Sadly, many homeowners are wary about using solar energy because of the supposedly high costs, especially when installing solar panels. However, that’s no longer the case. One of our ‘3 Reasons Why Now is the Time to Invest in Solar Panels’ is its affordability, all thanks to recent advancements that have lead to cheaper production costs.

Non-incandescent Lights

If solar panels are too much of an investment now, then you can at least try replacing your incandescent lighting. Incandescent bulbs use around 40 to 100 watts of energy, which is a far cry from halogen bulbs (25 watts), compact fluorescent bulbs (20 watts), and LED bulbs (10 watts) available on the market today. Start by replacing the lights that are on for long periods, such as those in your kitchen, living room, dining area, and your bedroom.

Energy Efficient Appliances

Though they’re more expensive than conventional models, buying energy-efficient appliances is a good way to save energy in the long run. Make sure to only buy appliances with the ENERGY STAR label, which is the federal guarantee that they actually do save energy. Again, you can start by replacing the appliances that you use the most, like your refrigerator and washing machine.

Energy-efficient homes are a huge investment, especially if you’re buying completely new appliances and paying for any renovations to make it happen. However, it’s one investment that pays off in the long run—both for your expenses, and the planet.

 

Article exclusively written for resnet.us

By Thea Julia

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