Maintaining an energy efficient home may seem like a daunting task. However, most of the components that make your home energy efficient are hidden in its structure. From there, making habits to conserve energy will help maintain the overall efficiency of your home.
An Energy Efficient Home Start With Construction
At its core, home efficiency is keeping cold air out and hot air in (and vice versa). Maximizing the efficiency of your home starts during the building process.
At Reinbrecht Homes, we start on the outside with a house wrap system that protects your home from air and moisture and still allows moisture to escape. On the inside, we use spray-in fiberglass insulation to fill the gaps between all of the studs. This spray-in insulation is above the industry standard of roll-in batt insulation (which doesn’t adequately prevent cold air from getting in or heat from escaping). In addition to this, we seal any place that creates a gap to the exterior with a caulking sealant.
Learn more about how we build energy efficient homes.
Avoid Phantom Energy
Phantom energy is the energy drawn by electronics that are powered off and still plugged in. It may seem impertinent, but think about it like this:
If you have multiple televisions, battery chargers, and DVD players that are powered off and plugged in for most of the day, that sums up to a lot of phantom power usage.
Over time, the use of phantom energy can lead to higher energy bills. One way to avoid this is by using a power strip to power multiple electronics and switch off the power strip when the electronics aren’t in use.
Get Energy Tune-Ups
Make sure to tune-up your heating & air system when transitioning between summer and winter. Heating and cooling make up about 35%-40% of a home’s energy use, so it’s important to make sure that they are in tip-top shape. You’ll also want to replace the filters regularly so that your systems aren’t working harder than they need to.
Check the Seals
One of the easiest and cheapest ways to create an energy efficient home is check the seals around windows and doors annually to prevent gaps that let air in or out. You may also want to check around ducts, the attic entrance, the fireplace, the plumbing and utility accesses. Seal air leaks in and around windows with silicone caulk or shrink film or consider putting
Save Water by Washing Full Loads
You can save water by washing full loads and using cold water when possible. Switching loads while the dryer is still warm will save the remaining heat for the next drying cycle. Always clean the lint filter for safety and to maintain proper air circulation.
Use Natural Lighting
The sun is arguably one of our greatest resources. Open the windows and use natural light when possible to decrease the need for artificial lighting. Timers and dimmers allow you to use lower light levels and keep them from being on longer than needed. Using solar-powered lighting for outdoor use along sidewalks, landscaping, and porches will also save energy.
Learn more about the energy efficient home features and materials that come standard with a new home built by Reinbrecht Homes.