5 Simple Ways To Save Energy In Your Home

ways to save energy in your home

Living in the Adirondacks and in a northern climate, energy costs associated with heating and cooling your home can add up. Like many Adirondack homeowners, you may be looking for how to reduce utility bills and find ways to save energy in your home.

While there are many steps you can take to evaluate and reduce energy usage in your Adirondack home, some of these actions may be difficult to implement. Depending on the age of your home, your financial situation and your DIY expertise, some ideas may be out of your reach. Our experienced staff at Adirondack Premier Properties know Adirondackers and their homes. We are pleased to share these quick ways to save energy in your home, help the environment and reduce your cost of home ownership.

Read on for simple, easy to implement strategies to start improving your energy use situation today.

Homeowner Tips – Ways to Save Energy in Your Home

1. Eliminate Air Leaks And Drafts

This is one of the biggest things an Adirondack homeowner can do to make their home more efficient. Life in the North Country involves some pretty harsh winters, and for many homeowners, also living in an older home that may not be as air tight as newer construction homes.

Finding and addressing air leaks and drafts in your home allows you to maintain a more consistent temperature and reduces the workload of your heat source. This translates to a more comfortable home and reduced energy costs. Typically, air leaks can be found in windows, doors, attics, basements in addition to other unexpected spots throughout your home.

  • DOORS- Exterior doors are one of the biggest culprits for air leaks and drafts in homes. Replacing old drafty doors or purchasing weather stripping & seals can help keep cold air out while keeping heat in. If the door is not used during the winter, specialized caulking products can be used to fill around the door. These are also easily removed at change of seasons when the door is back in use. If you already have weather stripping and seals in place, inspect them each year for signs of wear and replace as needed.
  • WINDOWS – Similar to doors, windows are the next biggest drain on energy for homes, especially an older home. Insulating your windows during winter with plastic seal wrap around the frame is an effective way to reduce energy loss. Plastic wrap is affordable and typically costs a few dollars for each window. Easily removed in the spring, this simple solution can make your home warmer and more comfortable throughout the winter. Additionally, adding heavy duty insulated curtains to your windows can add another layer of insulation to protect against heat loss.
  • ATTIC & BASEMENT – The top and bottom-most areas of your home are common places to find hidden air leaks. Typically not used as often as other rooms throughout the house, these rooms can hide energy loss. Using foam insulation or chalk to seal up small leaks can be a quick fix. Larger leaks may require a little more effort like adding new insulation or replacing old or beat up insulation.
  • UNEXPECTED LEAKS – Some areas you may not think about for leaks are electrical outlets, light outlets, gaps in insulation and your fireplace. Depending on when your house was built and type of insulation used, you may find leaks coming through your walls via electrical outlets, lights or gaps in insulation. Over the years, the quality of insulation products has advanced with technology. New products can be better at keeping your heat leaks in, so replacing older insulation could bring good returns on investment if your home age or renovation date is older. Keeping your flue or damper open in your fireplace or wood stove can also allows air to flow into your house. Keeping these closed can help keep leaks at bay.

2. Close Doors And Vents For Unused Rooms

While it is nice to have an open home where you can easily move between rooms, closing doors and vents in unused rooms is one of the very effective ways to save energy in your home. When doors and vents are open, this allows air to flow freely. If some rooms are colder then others, it can cause your heating source to turn on. Keeping doors and vents closed reduces drafts and maintains a more consistent temperature to reduce heat source workload and energy use.

3. Air Circulation

Most people associate ceiling fans primarily with summer use, but surprisingly they can come in handy during the winter too. Many ceiling fans have a switch that allows the fan to change direction and draw air up rather than pushing it down. This can lifts hot air and move it around your home. This is especially helpful when you have a warmer room or a fireplace/ woodstove. The fan can help you move heat around the home and reduce reliance on alternative heating sources such as space heaters that may be more expensive to run.

4. Thermostats

Your thermostat could be one of the most affordable and simplest ways to save energy in your home. Set a schedule so your thermostat lowers when you are not home or when you are sleeping. Lower temps during these time save energy costs. Turning the thermostat down 10-15 degrees can lead to almost 10% savings. Another option is to keep your thermostat low and wear more clothing while you are home.

Finally, many of the new smart thermostats have an energy efficient mode that calculates what the best temperature setting is to save energy in your home. These thermostats have even been incentivized in certain areas, and some have some rebates that lead to even greater savings. Many energy companies like National Grid have special offers on energy efficiency products.

5. LED Lights

Finally, it is time to take a closer look at your light bulbs. This is probably one of the most affordable ways to save energy in your home. Take a moment to think about how many bulbs are used throughout your home. Switching out older style bulbs with new LED bulbs typically brings a 75% change in energy usage. LED’s typically las 25 times longer. Longer bulb life not only saves on your energy bill, but also saves on replacement costs and reduces bulb waste.

BONUS – Turn Off Unused Lights and Unplug Devices & Appliances When Not in Use

It may seem silly to point out, but turning off unused lights, devices and small appliances is the simplest way to lower energy usage. If these items are not in use, turning them off or unplugging them can save a surprising amount of money. Give it a try and see if there is a difference in your electric bill!

At Adirondack Premier Properties, we strive to offer the best service in all things real estate. Our knowledge and expertise doesn’t end with buying and selling homes. We know the Adirondack real estate market and are very familiar with the unique benefits and challenges of owning a home in the ADK. We hope that our 5 Ways to Save Energy in Your Home tips will help you save money and free up funds to back other projects on your property. Contact us today to make your next Adirondack real estate dream come true!

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