Love is still in the air from Valentine's Day. So why not show some of that love to your home? One way to do this is to make some energy efficient updates that will keep you comfortable, making it easier to love your house, and others in it!
Dress Up the Windows
Window treatments do more than make your windows look good; they can also greatly increase the comfort of your home by reducing winter heat loss. Drapes are one way to add beauty and efficiency to your windows - helping to reduce heat loss from a warm room up to 10%. Blinds, too, are an attractive window treatment option, and you may be eligible to take advantage of tax credits for select energy-efficient shades.
During the winter, open the drapes on sunlit windows during the day to allow passive solar energy to help heat the house. Shutting them at night will help ensure minimal heat loss, especially if you make certain blinds are fully closed and drapes are overlapped (you can even use magnetic clips to keep fabric drapes shut!).
Sealing Up the Cracks
Conquering air leaks by weatherstripping exterior doors is a big energy saver. Energy Saver's weatherstripping comparison chart can help break down the best types of weatherstripping to use for your particular situation. Using the correct material will help act as an effective air barrier. Be sure to apply weatherstripping to clean, dry surfaces in temperatures above 20°F.
Sprucing Up the Ventilation
Some ventilation issues could lead to moisture problems. If you notice potential issues, especially in the bathroom or kitchen, you may wish to just upgrade your spot ventilation system.
The American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineering, or ASHRAE, recommends intermittent or continuous ventilation rates for bathrooms of 50 or 20 cubic feet per minute. Be sure to choose an ENERGY STAR ventilation fan that will use less energy and provide better performance with less noise!
It sounds like a lot of work, especially on a holiday weekend, but it will pay off in the long run. So, continue to spread the love from Valentine's Day by doing your part to cut energy use and costs in your home. Not only will you be more comfortable, but you will also have more in your wallet to spend on that special someone.
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