Has your Chicago area home been properly insulated, or have you recently had it re-insulated to become more energy efficient? That’s great, but there are still a number of things you can do to maximize energy savings. No more having to dread opening your utility bills!
Improve Energy Efficiency of Your Home
Besides installing insulation, what can you do to enhance the energy efficiency of your home? There are actually a lot of things you can do, and most of them are super easy!
Buy ENERGY STAR rated appliances – Almost anything you can think of can be an ENERGY STAR product—windows and doors, washers and dryers, dishwashers, air conditioners, and much more! Just look for the blue label on the product you want to know you’re using the most efficient appliances you can buy.
Change AC filters on a monthly basis – AC maintenance is extremely important. When your air filters are dirty, your AC not only uses more energy but is also more likely to break down. You should change the filters about once a month.
Save hot water – This is one you’ve undoubtedly heard before, but it’s one of the easiest ways to get a more energy-efficient home! Doing things like showering instead of taking a bath and running the dishwasher or doing laundry when you have full loads can make a huge difference.
Save electricity – Saving electricity is another obvious one, but it’s also one of the easiest ways to improve energy efficiency in your home! Turn off the lights when you’re not using the room—and the same goes for DVD players, computers, CD players, etc. Turn them off when you’re done, or at least put them to sleep. If something is plugged into a power strip, unplug the power strip when you’re done—many electronics still use energy, even when they’re in standby mode.
Use fans when you can – Running fans counterclockwise during the summer helps spread cool air around, making you feel cooler while allowing you to set your thermostat a little higher. Running fans clockwise in the winter pushes warm air up to the ceiling and back down the walls, making you feel warmer and allowing you to lower the thermostat and save some money.
Seal your ducts – Believe it or not, leaky ductwork is one of the leading causes of home energy inefficiency. Make sure your ducts are properly sealed! One easy way to detect leaky ductwork is by shining a flashlight into your air registers—make sure there is no light escaping from the outside of the ducts.
Buy CFL bulbs – You may want to think about replacing your incandescent bulbs with energy-efficient CFL bulbs. Far from the hospital-bright lights many people think of, CFL bulbs have improved in both looks and efficiency and can reduce your energy costs by as much as 50 percent! This is one of the easiest ways to get a more energy-efficient home.
Use a programmable thermostat – All you have to do is set it up and adjust the settings. Programmable thermostats automatically adjust the temperature to your presets, meaning they can be set to more energy-efficient levels when you know you’re not going to be home.
And of course, if your home doesn’t have enough insulation, installing more is a great way to improve energy efficiency! If you think you may need more insulation but aren’t quite sure, or you need insulation contractors in Chicago or surrounding areas in Illinois, ThermaSeal / Lakeside Insulation can help.