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LizzieWeakley posted a blog entry in Lizzie Weakley's Green BlogIf you have a green home, you already know that the key to green living is to make the most of your energy consumption. Did you know that having the right roof can make the biggest difference in your home’s energy usage and the size your energy bill? Much of your home’s heat loss in the winter, and source of heat in the summer is the roof. Let’s learn more about how your roof affects your green home. Dark Roofs in the Summer Did you know that darker roofs can heat up to 50 to 60 degrees hotter than the outside temperature in the summer? If you live in a warm climate, a dark colored asphalt roof can heat up to 175° if the temperature is 95° outside. This makes your cooling system work much harder and also contributes to the heat island effect if you live in a city. A lighter colored roof decreases the solar gain and heat retention of your home. If you want to same on summer cooling costs, then replacing your roof will make a difference. Winter Heating Woes While a dark roof may not be ideal in the summer, if you live in a climate that has a longer winter than summer, a dark roof will help to reduce heating cost. Dark asphalt roofs absorb more heat than metal or rubber roofs. This not only helps to provide additional heating for the home, it helps snow melt off faster too. This is especially true with a properly insulated attic. Proper Insulation Having a properly insulated roof with the right color and type of roofing material means that you can run your furnace at a lower setting, which can result in big savings for your green home. Companies like Leon Construction can help you choose the right roof for your home and replace your old roof with new materials that are more sustainable than those used in the past. If you want to improve the efficiency of your green home, then your roof is the first place that you should look. A roof that is leaky and old can cost you more in the long run than replacing your roof with one that is more cost and energy efficient. A new roof is an investment that will pay for itself in the long run through lower heating and cooling bills. Not to mention, it will also improve the value of your home.
LizzieWeakley posted a blog entry in Lizzie Weakley's Green BlogMany homeowners are focused on improving home efficiency in various ways. Running an efficient home can ultimately save you money and even maintain or improve property value over time. You may think that you have thoroughly covered all of the bases through your property maintenance projects, but there may be one area that you have overlooked. Your home’s plumbing system impacts efficiency in several ways, and you cannot overlook this component if you want to enjoy a truly efficient, well-maintained home. By exploring the reasons why this is true, you may be able to take steps to further improve your home’s efficiency. Water Waste from Leaking Pipes Pipes can leak in older and newer homes alike. Many leaks are gushers, and you may be immediately alerted to their presence as water streams through your home. Other leaks, however, are smaller and may be more difficult to identify. For example, you may have a small leak in a pipe in your foundation or in your yard. They may be caused by poor workmanship, poor materials, the home settling naturally and more. You can request a plumbing inspection from a company like Highpoint Plumbing, a group of plumbers in Heber City, Utah to learn more about the condition of your pipes. These leaks can result in a tremendous amount of costly wasted water, and repairing them is a great way to keep your water bills as low as possible. High Humidity Levels Impacting the HVAC System When you have even a small leak or a dripping faucet, the humidity level in the home can go up. Your HVAC system is responsible for maintaining the home at an ideal temperature, but humidity can impact this dramatically. If you have a leak that is causing humidity levels to rise in the home, there is a chance that your HVAC system is not working as efficiently as it could be. When your plumber identifies and fixes small leaks in your pipes, you may notice that your HVAC system functions more efficiently. This can decrease HVAC repair needs, lower usage costs and extend the life of your HVAC system. Mold Growth Concerns Any time water and humidity levels are not controlled in the home, the issue of mold becomes a concern. Mold commonly grows in moist, darkened areas that are difficult to find. It can spread considerably in a short period of time, damaging many areas of the home without your knowledge. It also can cause moderate to serious illness or even death in you and your loved ones when exposed to mold spores. If you have been told that you had a water leak or high humidity levels, it is wise to get a professional mold test completed for your home. Mold remediation should begin immediately if you determine mold is growing in your home. The Issue of Water Quality Your home’s water heater plays a direct role in water quality in the home. Sediment and other debris in the hot water heater can enter your home’s water supply. In addition, there are times when the sewage line leaks back into the fresh water supply. Both can cause illness or worse. A plumbing inspection can reveal if this is a problem in your home. You may also spot signs of this through foul-smelling or discolored water. These are signs that plumbing repairs are urgently needed. It is easy to overlook the condition of your plumbing system as long as everything appears to be functioning as needed. However, you can see that hidden issues with your pipes, sewage line and hot water heater can cause serious issues that require urgent attention. These issues can impact your wallet in the form of extra expenses, and they can also affect your health. Consider scheduling a plumbing inspection soon to learn more about the current condition of this vital system and to make repairs as needed. By doing so, you can dramatically improve the efficiency and condition of your home.
LizzieWeakley posted a blog entry in Lizzie Weakley's Green BlogAs the weather turns warm and thermostats get turned down, many people will see a spike in their electric bills. Fortunately, there are a lot of options to make your house more energy-efficient. From simple steps that can be done in minutes to more intensive projects that may require hiring a professional, these tips can help lower your energy costs and make your home more environmentally friendly. Install Ceiling Fans Ceiling fans can drop the temperature of a room up to four degrees without using much electricity, but a four degree difference in your thermostat can lead to a huge difference in your electric bill. A window fan can also be used to cool a room much more efficiently than turning on the air conditioning, especially in early mornings and later evenings. Maintain the Air Conditioner If your air conditioner is in good condition, it will run more efficiently. Change the air filters regularly, vacuum and clean dust out of registers and vents, and clean around the exterior unit to ensure smooth airflow and not overwork the unit. It's also a good idea to have it professionally serviced once a year to troubleshoot any repairs and make sure it is running at peak condition. Install a Programmable Thermostat When you aren't home, don't keep the thermostat set low. If you are going to be gone at the same time every day, you can program the thermostat to raise while you are gone, then program it to lower to your preferred temperature about thirty minutes before you come home. This way you don't need to worry about re-setting your thermostat every day or forgetting to raise the temperature before you leave. Repair or Replace Old Windows Old windows can leak, and while the drafts in the winter are noticeable, they let a lot of warm air in in the summer, too. Caulking or weather-stripping around frames and leaky areas can help, but if your windows are old or single-paned, it may be worth it to replace them to a more efficient style of window. Have Your Home Insulated Insulating your home can make a huge difference in your home's energy efficiency. If your home is older, your home may be lacking insulation, or it may have lost its effectiveness. Having Reflective Optimizing Insulation installed by Parsons Construction Group in attics can reduce energy bills drastically and make your home significantly more efficient all year and has a lifetime performance guarantee. As the mercury creeps up, don't let your electric bill follow suit. Follow these tips to make your home more energy efficient to save money without sacrificing comfort.
EmmaSturgis posted a blog entry in Emma SturgisCutting back on your energy usage can have benefits to both your wallet and the globe. According to data from the Alliance to Save Energy, the average American household spends $2,100/year on energy, so reducing energy costs by just 10% or 20% could equal big savings. By making your home more energy efficient, you'll also help make a positive impact on the environment Ways Energy Efficiency is Beneficial 1. Improving the Environment It's no secret that the creation of traditional forms of energy releases carbon dioxide and pollutants into the air. By making their homes more energy efficient, people are decreasing the emissions released by power plants. Energy efficiency can lead to improvements in air quality and the level of water pollution. 2. Tax Credits When you make your home more energy efficient, you may qualify for an energy tax credit. The Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit applies to installations of solar, wind, and geothermal energy systems. If you've made improvements to your home's insulation or added Energy Star windows, you may qualify for the Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit 3. Immediate Savings Making energy-efficient improvements to your home will decrease the amount of your utility bills, and you won't have to wait long to see the savings. In addition, your home will probably be more comfortable during the summer and winter. Tips to Increase Energy Efficiency There are many things you can do to enhance the energy efficiency. Some options, like putting in LED or CFL lightbulbs, are pretty simple and don't require much of an investment. Other improvements may require an up-front investment that will pay for itself over time. A large portion of your energy usage is probably spent on heating and cooling your home. One option is to get a ceiling fan installed. Ceiling fans use much less energy than air conditioners, and they can help redistribute warm air in the winter. Replacing your old windows and doors with durable materials can also be a money-saving option. There are many different options, like the products offered at Statewide Energy Solutions, that you can use to easily upgrade your home and make it more energy efficient. The process of making your home more energy efficient will take time. In order to decide which steps will benefit you the most, you could consider getting a home energy audit. A professional will conduct the audit and explain how you can decrease your energy expenditures.