Optimizing energy efficiency can reduce utility costs while making your home more comfortable in the process. Not every homeowner realizes this, which is why a comprehensive guide to the subject is so useful.
As you’ll learn below, reducing power consumption through various methods can make your time living on your property a better experience. Whether you’re building a new home or renovating an older one, the guide to designing an energy-efficient home below will show you how to make the most out of this process.
Energy-Efficient Methods and Designs
This list contains five points explaining how to boost energy efficiency through modern technology and slight adjustments to daily habits. Implementing any individual method below will prove beneficial when it comes to utility costs and indoor temperatures. However, making an effort to use multiple or all of these methods will be well worth the effort in the long run.
A Fresh Set of Bulbs
First, let’s go through one of the more convenient methods of improving energy efficiency—installing LED bulbs. Although incandescent bulbs produce light, what homeowners don’t always realize is how these bulbs waste energy. Only about 10 percent of the energy incandescent bulbs use goes toward emitting visible light. The other 90 percent of the energy consumed by incandescent lights simply turns into heat. Don’t worry; fixing this issue is incredibly simple.
All you have to do is pick up some good LED bulbs and install them all over the house. Plus, you can easily find LEDs that emit different color temperatures. Whether you want bulbs that emit a warm, soothing glow or an intense, bright light, there’s a set of LEDs that can help you achieve that effect. Not only do LEDs waste less energy than incandescent bulbs, but the former lasts much longer too.
The Right Roofing Material
Many homeowners choose asphalt shingles when deciding on a roof to install. This roofing option is prevalent, but if you’re trying to design an energy-efficient home, asphalt shingles won’t help. Luckily, metal roofing is beneficial when it comes to optimizing energy usage. If properly installed, metal roofs boost energy efficiency thanks to their ventilation and reflective properties.
Metal roofing has a strong knack for reflecting radiant heat, allowing your home to naturally maintain a comfortable indoor temperature. When your home’s indoor temperature is naturally comfortable, you can immensely minimize cooling and heating system usage.
These great attributes are why our residential standing seam metal roof comes in energy-efficient colors that meet ENERGY STAR requirements. In fact, swapping out any appliance with an ENERGY STAR product is a great way to cut down on power consumption at home.
Better Water Heating Habits
Water heaters are another home amenity that uses up way more energy than some people realize. Hot water is great, but excessive usage can lead to excessive energy bills.
Insulating your water heater storage tanks and pipes is a great way to prevent heat loss while the until is operating. Insulating might sound straightforward, but you should consult with a professional before taking a DIY approach to upgrading water heaters with this method. We’ll get into more detail about the benefits of insulation later in this guide because it’s an essential task for boosting energy efficiency at home.
Furthermore, you should consider investing in a timer for your water heater to minimize power consumption. An average water heater will always be functioning. That might sound harmless, but constantly keeping water heaters on results in a needless waste of energy. Luckily, homeowners can install energy-efficient monitoring systems for water heaters, giving them the power to schedule when the heater operates and when it doesn’t. For instance, scheduling the water heater to remain off while you’re asleep or at work is a great way to dodge unnecessary costs on your utility bill.
Another simple way to reduce water heating costs is by only using hot water when absolutely necessary. You can successfully complete daily household tasks such as brushing your teeth, doing the laundry, or washing your hands with cold water—requiring no assistance from the water heater.
Enhancing Windows and Doors
How you optimize doors and windows can make or break your energy consumption. For instance, taking the time to inspect doors and windows for cracks can help you prevent unwanted heat loss or gain. The heat loss will negatively affect indoor temperatures during winter when warming up the house is particularly helpful.
On the other hand, heat gain will make the house feel uncomfortably warm during the summer. A window crack might look small, but it has a big effect on how comfortable your home is without touching your heating and cooling system. In fact, weather stripping exterior doors is a must when looking for methods to minimize heat gain and loss.
Even a single door or window can be an energy vacuum, but simple tasks like the ones listed above can help you prevent such a scenario. Additionally, a great way to enhance the effect windows and doors have on your heat usage is by swapping them out for more energy-efficient models. Whenever you’re shopping for energy-efficient windows, doors, or even skylights, be sure to look at each one’s energy performance rating. The better the rating, the bigger the impact the window, door, or skylight can have on your home’s heat loss and gain.
Insulating the Entire House
Earlier, we briefly touched on the value of insulating water heater components. The importance of insulation expands beyond your water heater. Minimizing heating and cooling costs is as easy as putting insulation in the ceilings, walls, and floors of your home. Insulation is particularly useful in areas of the house that are more susceptible to the elements, such as basements, attics, and any exterior walls. The purpose of insulation is to regulate internal temperatures.
This means that when it gets hot in the summer, insulation between the walls keeps the inside of your home cool and comfortable. On the other hand, the insulation will keep your home warm and cozy during the colder winter months.
Unfortunately, not all homeowners optimize energy efficiency. Regardless, as you can see from the points above, investing in energy efficiency can pay off in the long run. You can make small improvements through new light bulbs, or you can take it a step further and buy more energy-efficient roofing materials, windows, doors, and other household essentials. However you want to make improvements, the guide to designing an energy-efficient home above shows you the best ways to do it.