To help in the constant battle to make our world a greener place to live we have now developed a big Guide on how to make your house energy efficient. This way you can effectively lower your energy consumption and save money at the same time. And who doesn’t want an energy efficient house.

Energy efficient house

Energy efficient house Photo: Public Domain Karen Arnold

Reduce the heating costs, a step towards an energy efficient house

Anyone who still lives in a house heated only by electricity, has much to gain by looking through other options. However changing the form of heating in a house is unfortunately associated with large investment costs. It is therefore important to really go through the house and its preconditions to be able to find the right form of heating for your family. The cheapest form of installation is Air-Source Heat Pumps. These may be electricity driven but can reduce heating costs by up to 40%, however, there is a catch. If it gets really cold they are unable to provide sufficient heating whereby there will be need for a supplemental heat source. Their range is also limited making them best suited in houses with an open floor plan. One of the most expensive investments is to install geothermal heating. But on the other hand this option demands very little of the home owner to make the system work.

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fireplace and cat

Photo: Public Domain Andrew Schmidt

The choice many people make when acquiring a new heating system is to instead install wood pellet boilers, modern Cordwood Boilers, geothermal, district and possibly solar Thermal Heating. All of these options require a hot water heating system to already be installed in the house. To some degree they can also draw some electric power as well just to function. And not to be forgotten the options that require that you will buy fuel that will cost money.

To reduce power consumption, it is also many who choose to install stoves of various kinds in the home, Some stoves are very efficient, with both water jacketing and fans etc. These cost a pretty penny, but they result in great savings in the form of lower electricity costs in the long term. Moreover, many of us see them as a major enhancer of life quality. Imagine sitting comfortably in your favorite armchair and read in front of a live fire to keep you warm.

 

reduce heating costs

Photo: Public Domain Petr Kratochvil

Making the heating system more efficient

If a change of heat source is not an option, it is possible to instead try to optimize the effective heating delivered by the radiators. With new ones the regulation will be more efficient than with old ones. Fans under the radiators make the heat spread better in the room and give an enhanced heating effect on each kilowatthour that is consumed. The rooms that are rarely used don’t have to be warmed up quite as much, and maybe it is possible to lower the room temperature generally without sacrificing comfort. Putting timers on radiators so that heat is reduced at night and during the day when the family is at work or in school is another thing that can lower electricity costs

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Cooling

Just like heating the electrical cooling of a house in the warmer corners of our world will consume electricity like crazy. But there are ways you can keep your A/C costs to a minimum. There are devices that can be used before the heavy cooling artillery needs to be pulled out.

Make Your House Energy Efficient cooling

Photo: Public Domain Petr Kratochvil

Swamp cooler

An evaporative cooler or swamp cooler uses water to cool the air down. The air is blown through wet pads to cool it down. In a not to extreme and somewhat dry climate this device can cheaply lower the degrees of your home. If you buy two of them you could put them in opposite windows creating a draft.

Great attic fan

Hot air rises and in a house this hot air will accumulate at your attic making it hard to cool down a great attic fan blows the highly tempered air away leaving space for new air to rise keeping it nice and cool in the lower levels of the house. This nifty device will decrees your electric bill by 10%

Underground cooling

Then there is the technique of underground cooling. This is far more expensive then the fans mentioned above, but also much more effective. It works by digging tubes underground and connecting them to the house, then the air pressure is regulated so that ventilation will flow through the tubing cooling off the air naturally by leading it underground and back up again.

 

Exchanging doors and windows

exchange old windows

Photo: Public Domain Jennifer Lilley

Apart form of heating itself the insulation in a house is a big factor when it comes to heating costs. A measure that can reduce heating costs is an exchange of the front door and windows to energy efficient alternatives. This way it is ensured that the precious heat does not escape through there making your heating system have to work much more too keep room temperature inside the house at a desirable level. The placement of windows and doors can be an important part too. If ideas of Passive solar building design are followed, they would be placed in such a way that sunlight is shining through them as much as possible warming the house at wintertime and shaded from the sun during the summer to keep the house cool.

 

Supplementary insulation of ceiling, walls and basement

Adding to the layer of insulation in a house will of course keep heat from escaping out if one lives in a cold climate, and prevent heat from coming in on the warmer latitudes of the earth. just like mittens will keep your hands worm during winter or the thick layer of isolation keeps your icecream cool in the summer. Just remember that when insulation is changed in older houses the ventilation and housing health can become affected as well. Always consult with a professional before adding additional insulation in a house

 

Baby steps

There are a number of smaller steps that affect the overall power consumption as well. New energy-rated appliances reduces total electricity consumption by decent amount per year, the same is true for low energy light bulbs, or even better LED lights. To have timers on garden light fixtures and interior lighting makes sure that the used energy in the house is used when it is needed and not in vain. To turn off the lights in unused rooms should be an obvious energy saving technique, there is hardly any point of light shining in a place where no one is around to enjoy it.

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