The Green Guide to Summer-Proofing Your Home
For many, a long hot summer is coming soon. Are you cringing over the upcoming increase in your electric bill? But wait, you can do something about it. Here are four methods to lower the use of energy and summer-proof your home.
Stop Chimney Draft
Think about the large chimney holes required by your stove or fireplace. These create a huge escape path for your cold AC air. You can block the chimney in the summer with several inexpensive and easy methods. Block the flow of air with an inflatable chimney balloon or other cleaner. These devices are made to be very flexible around the edges, so they conform to the shape of your chimney for maximum blockage of air flow.
Inspect around your doors and windows. You might be surprised at the many places you can find cracks that let your precious cold air escape. Have someone go on the outside and shine a flashlight around the edges of windows and doors. You will see the light coming through the cracks. You can use some caulking or weather stripping to close the cracks. But don’t stop there, check around the edges of your attic and between your foundation and the walls. Fill the cracks with caulking. Sealing the cracks also blocks out bugs, an added bonus of going greener!
Incandescent light bulbs generate a lot of heat. Replace those glaring heaters with new style light bulbs that use LEDs as the light source. An added bonus is the lower consumption of electricity by LED lighting. Consider replacing your CRT or LCD television with an LED unit for better power use and more savings.
One of the major sources of heat gain (and cooling loss) for a typical house is through the windows. Recent technology design for windows improves their efficiency in blocking heat from outside or inside tremendously. If your windows are old and need replacement, consider replacing them with high quality windows, like those at Fas Windows and Doors. There are three types of improvements in window designs you should focus on. First, the glazing (glass portion of a window) is made with a coating that reduces solar radiation. Second, the glazing has 2 or 3 layers (double or triple paned) separated by a special gas to reduce conduction, and the third is low conduction separators that keep the right distance between layers while minimizing heat conduction.
This green guide for summer-proofing can also be applied to winter-proofing as well. The idea is to separate the home interior environment from the outside without creating a dark box atmosphere. Hopefully, these suggestions will spark your imagination to implement some energy saving changes to your house.