Older homes have charm and curb appeal, but they typically don’t have an efficient envelope. A home’s age plays a role, but building materials and construction practices just weren’t as efficient a few decades ago as new home construction is today. It doesn’t take a major overhaul to bring comfort and lower energy bills to your Maryland home. In fact, keep reading and you’ll see how simple and practical energy-saving upgrades can be.
The first step toward making your older home more efficient and comfortable is locating where it’s losing energy. A professional energy audit can help by detailing how and when your home uses energy and where inefficiencies in the envelope are wasting energy. When the results are in, you’ll know where to focus your energy and hard-earned dollars to tighten up your home.
Seal the Envelope
As a home ages, leaks develop around windows and through the shell, creating uncomfortable and expensive drafts. This is especially true in our Mid-Atlantic region, with potential weather extremes in every season. Use practical materials to seal your home from the elements. Caulk around windows, pipes and wires, and use weatherstripping to seal the attic door, and for sealing entry doorways. A can of expanding-spray foam can fill larger holes and gaps in the shell.
As you know, insulation is very important for keeping conditioned air inside. Inspect your current insulation. Make sure the attic has at least 12 inches of insulation, and consider adding more insulation to R-60, as Energy Star recommends. If there’s water or mold damage, toss out the damaged portions and add new insulation. If you’re adding insulation, use a lighter density so the bottom layers don’t compress and lose R-value.
Check the air filter. A clogged air filter can damage the HVAC system and increase energy bills. If you’re having indoor air quality problems, consider upgrading HVAC equipment with a UV light system or electronic air cleaner. Schedule a preventive maintenance tune up with your HVAC technician this spring.
Learn more about energy-saving upgrades available from Griffith Energy Services, Inc., or contact us today at 888-474-3391 to schedule an appointment!
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