You may want to make some “green” updates to your home and not know where to start. An energy audit is a great way to find out where your home is leaking energy and focus on the items with the biggest improvements first.
I found a good resource for tips of saving energy, a website called Energy Savers. Here are a few excerpts from their site:
Energy Auditing Tips
- Check the insulation levels in your attic, exterior and basement walls, ceilings, floors, and crawl spaces. Visit www.energysavers.gov for instructions on checking your insulation levels.
- Check for holes or cracks around your walls, ceilings, windows, doors, and you can also get a recommendation about the best plumber and check the plumbing fixtures, switches, and electrical outlets that can leak air into or out of your home.
- Check for open fireplace dampers.
- Make sure your appliances and heating and cooling systems are properly maintained. Check your owner’s manuals for the recommended maintenance.
- Study your family’s lighting needs and use patterns, paying special attention to high-use areas such as the living room, kitchen, and outside lighting. Look for ways to use lighting controls—like occupancy sensors, dimmers, or timers—to reduce lighting energy use, and replace standard (incandescent) light bulbs and fixtures with compact or standard fluorescent lamps.
Formulating Your Plan
After you have identified where your home is losing energy, assign priorities by asking yourself a few important questions:
- How much money do you spend on energy?
- Where are your greatest energy losses?
- How long will it take for an investment in energy efficiency to pay for itself in energy cost savings?
- Do the energy-saving measures provide additional benefits that are important to you (for example, increased comfort from installing double-paned, efficient windows)?
- How long do you plan to own your current home?
- Can you do the job yourself orwill you need to hire a contractor?
- What is your budget and how much time do you have to spend on maintenance and repair?
Once you know what to start on decide if you are going to tackle the job yourself, or if you want to hire a contractor or handyman to help you. If you need any recommendations just send us a message.