Are you looking for energy-saving tips for older homes? Living in an older or historic home definitely has its charms. Distinctive living spaces created for specific activities and a more thoughtful overall design approach make them desirable in today’s cookie-cutter climate.
Before the mid twentieth century, interior architecture was designed for comfort without the benefit of central heat and air. Older homes were constructed using different techniques and materials chosen specifically to work with the environment.Most older homes have been retrofitted with some kind of HVAC system – and if the house was not sealed or modified effectively then it is probably wasting a substantial amount of energy.
There are several simple steps that you can take to help lower your utility bills without harming your home’s interior. Try adding these tips before the heat of the summer begins and then start comparing your utility bills from last year. The difference might surprise you.
- Seal Cracks – Cracks in the windows, doors and foundation can cause air leaks and can greatly affect your energy costs. By sealing old leaks, you can help keep the heating and cooling inside your house. Window and door sealing kits are readily available at your local hardware store.
- Heavy Curtains/Solar Curtains – Drafts from windows can be significantly reduced by the placement of heavy curtains or drapes over them. Reflective solar curtains, placed between the original curtain and the window will help block out the sun in summer and keep the heat inside in the winter.
- Programmable Thermostat – If your HVAC system doesn’t already have a programmable thermostat, you should look into installing one. They allow a home owner greater control over their heating and cooling; even when no one is home. Some designs can also “learn” how to modulate the temperature to your comfort level while saving energy.
- Insulate Hot Water Heater & Exposed Piping – Your hot water heater is the second highest energy drain on your home (no matter the age). It is constantly working to keep the water hot, even when you aren’t using it. If you own a traditional tank heater, you can save quite a bit of energy by insulating it – as well as the exposed piping.
- Replace Light Bulbs – Another very simple way to cut down on the electric bill is to replace your incandescent or halogen light bulbs. LED bulbs are more energy-efficient and last longer than the older bulbs.
- Energy Audit – If your home is more than 50 years old and has never had an energy audit, you should schedule one. An audit is a thorough assessment of how much energy your home uses – and what can be done to improve its efficiency.
If you are living in an older home and have questions regarding your HVAC system or practical energy-saving tips, call us today at 405-794-8900!