What To Do First To Save Energy At Home

As we settle in for another winter heating season, here are some tips on how to save money on your heating bill and stay comfortable in the process.

Stop Heat Loss From Your Fireplace

Wood-burning fireplaces have a charm of their own, but older designs rely on room air for combustion, causing air you’ve paid to heat to go up the chimney. Airtight doors with closable vents let you keep the vents closed when you’re not using the fireplace, keeping warm room air inside where it belongs. Newer fireplaces that use outside air for combustion also benefit from airtight doors, preventing warm air from being pulled out of the room.

Use Quilted Drapes to Cover Drafty Windows

Quilted drapes and curtains block drafts much better than blinds or sheer draperies. They can install easily on most existing curtain rods and can be pulled back on sunny days to let light and solar heat into the room.

Use Space Heaters Correctly

If you spend a lot of time in a particular room—a home office, for instance—turning down the thermostat for the whole house and using a space heater in that room can result in savings. Just remember that you generally need to lower your thermostat at least five degrees to offset the cost of running the space heater. And be sure to observe all safety precautions when using space heaters.

Cut Down Heat Loss From Windows

Replacing windows with energy-saving models can save on heating and air conditioning costs, cut down on drafts, and make your home look nicer. But don’t be fooled into thinking you’ll recover the expense on energy savings. It usually takes years for new windows to repay their cost. Storm windows can be a much more cost-effective way to save money, especially if you have single-pane windows. Newer designs with low-e glass are more efficient, easier to install and use, and pay for themselves much quicker than replacement windows. If you plan on a DIY project, be sure you measure accurately and install them properly. NOTE: storm windows are not recommended for aluminum windows because heat buildup can cause damage to the frames.

Seal Basement Leaks

Unfinished basements can be major sources of heat loss. Areas around the foundation and where pipes and wires are located are usually insulated poorly, if at all. Sill plates sit horizontally on the concrete or block foundation and support the vertical joists that run around the foundation to support the structure above. Caulking the intersections of the boards and filling gaps along the foundation will cut down considerably on air leaks, as will sealing leaks around pipes and wires. If the gaps are more than ¼”, use expanding foam for a better seal.

Consider a Home Energy Audit

If you’re uncertain about what to do electrically to increase energy efficency, Allstar will perform a Residential Electrical Evaluation Audits on your premises.

Besides advising you on ways to save energy, our audit checks for service and safety issues and anything else that may affect the efficiency, safety, and convenience of your electrical service.

Allstar Electrical brings more than 25 years’ experience in working with homeowners, businesses, and contractors into play for you. We’re A+ rated by the Better Business Bureau and a proud recipient of a 2013 Super Service Award from Angie’s List. Contact the pros at Allstar Electrical Service today to schedule an appointment to review your home’s energy use and other electrical needs. It’s as simple as calling 303.399.7420 or using our online service request, available anytime, day or night.