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Save Energy this Summer!
Unless you plan an insulation overhaul you are only as good as the insulation between your walls. These three simple tips are the easiest things you can do with the biggest energy saving payback to lower your utility cost this summer.
Use Your Blinds & Shades
Believe it or not utilizing the positioning of your blinds and shades during the hot summer months, is an extremely effective way to deal with solar heat gain. It is not a radiant barrier but the difference between not having blinds and shades closed to having them closed during the hottest part of the day is huge. When you want to warm your home for example in the morning, make sure your blinds and shades are open allowing radiant heat to pass right through all the window openings with no thermal break naturally warming the rooms within. When you want to keep the heat out from your living space make sure the blinds and shades are closed.
Use Ceiling Fans & Box Fans
Utilizing fans is an efficient, low cost way to help keep your home cool or cool it down. If you are using air conditioning, using fans to move and blend the air is a great way to feel the cooling benefits sooner resulting in less energy usage. The feeling of slight moving air always goes a long way to make you feel cooler. It is like a gentle breeze. If you do not have air conditioning use box fans in your window openings. Make sure to have the fans pointed in anytime there is cooler air outside that you want to bring in. For daytime applications when heat is rising have the fans point outside to ensure air exchange. Doing this simple trick guarantees some air movement that can make you feel a few degrees cooler.
Weather-strip & Caulk
In order for your insulation system to operate at its best, you must help stop air movement. Heat always flows to cold. This means there will always be an effort for air infiltration in your home. You can drastically minimize this by purchasing some caulk. Caulk is relatively inexpensive. Seal all gaps where air can enter. The largest concern areas are generally around your doors and windows. Check also around trim areas. Window air conditioner units are another major entry area. These units must work much harder when they are not correctly insulated. Check the area and insulate and caulk any places there are air gaps.
Utilizing these tips over the course of a summer will not only help you feel cooler, your energy bill will be cooler too. These tips alone can easily add up to over a few hundred dollars in savings.
Nick Semon uses his 10 year professional experience in the insulation field to provide information to consumers and homeowners about better insulation practices. For more information on how to lower your utility bills and save energy go to Insulationstop.com or my brand new blog, InsulateOurEarth.com.
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