Written by: Mikkie Mills
Creating an eco-friendly home doesn’t have to involve major construction or renovating. You can take any standard house and drastically increase its energy efficiency with some smart changes in the right places. Here is a go-to guide on all the adjustments you can make to create an eco-friendlier home without starting from scratch.
Upgrade Your Windows
Adams Homes’ properties are always equipped with the latest window technology with high performance glass to make sure energy efficiency is maximized. However, it’s important to be aware that old, leaky, or inefficient windows can be a great source of energy loss within the home. Well insulated, high performance windows will reduce your need for turning on the AC or heater. Rather than completely installing new windows, you can boost their efficiency by sealing up cracks and gaps, adding new weatherstripping or replacing single-glazed windows.
Switch Out Any Incandescent Bulbs With Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs)
We use lights in every room each day, and during the winter months we spend even more time with our lights on. If you haven’t looked into replacing your lightbulbs, then consider that CFLs can save three-quarters of the electricity used by incandescent bulbs. Think of it in the terms that the electricity to run a lightbulb costs much more than the bulb itself. One of the new CFLs bulbs will be pricier by costing two or three dollars, but you can expect them to last 10,000 hours while using only 27 watts to generate as much light as a 100-watt incandescent bulb.
Mind Your Electronics
If you’re like most people, you have various electronics strung about your home, and the amount of energy they slowly drain when not in use can really add up. By taking some extra steps to better manage your electronics energy consumption, you can make your home much more efficient. To conserve energy, try plugging electronics into a power strip, then turn the strip off when not in use. Pay attention to any electronics that go into “standby” mode, which also use energy when not in use. It should also be noted that many chargers continue to use power even when their device isn’t plugged in, so keep them unplugged when not charging. In addition to these tips, you can check for energy star ratings when purchasing larger electronics, like TVs.
Improve The Efficiency Of Your Hot Water System
There are numerous ways you can better manage water use and heating and in your home. Start by checking your pipes and faucets for any leaks that might put a drain on your energy savings, then take steps to insulate your pipes, at least the first several feet of them. You should also turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120°F) as well as insulate your hot water lines to help them maintain their temperature between uses. Also, use low-flow fixtures for showers and baths.
Make Sure Your Walls And Attic Are Well Insulated
When it comes to insulation efficiency, it’s all about slowing the rate that heat flows out of the house in winter or into the house in summer, so less energy is required to heat or cool the house. Using blown-in insulation can greatly improve the comfort of your home and save enough energy to be very cost-effective. It may not pay off to add additional insulation to already insulated walls, but check places that may not have any, such as your attic or basement ceiling – those will be well worth the money spent.
Use Eco-Friendly Materials
You can find endless cosmetic and functional opportunities in your home to use sustainable, recycled, and overall more eco-friendly materials. This can take form in the type of flooring, countertops, furniture, and paint used as well as other design elements. Incorporate reused or antique pieces for things like light fixtures, shelves, or sliding barn door hardware.
Energy-efficient technology is always being improved, which is why Adams Homes is always updating our properties with the latest energy saving appliances. However, if you have a washer, dryer or refrigerator from bygone days, replacing these appliances is an instant way of improving efficiency.
By implementing these changes you’ll cover all the bases in how your home uses energy. Reference this guide next time you plan on doing some remodeling or redecorating, there’s room for making energy-efficient choices in nearly every aspect of home design.
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About Adams Homes
Founded in 1991, Adams Homes is known as the premier home builder and is one of the largest privately-held home building companies in the southeast. Adams Homes has built more than 35,000 new homes since 1991 and builds in seven states including new homes for sale in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee with corporate headquarters in Gulf Breeze, Florida.
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