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How to Make Your Old Home More Energy Efficient

By Rachel Duthie on  November 16, 2020

Living in an older home can be a unique experience for those who are looking to escape the everyday norm, but it often comes with tradeoffs. Built using less energy-efficient technology, older homes often consume more power than newer buildings, resulting in sky-high energy costs and unhappy residents.

However, by making energy-efficiency improvements big and small, homeowners can enjoy the charm of an older home without worrying about their monthly energy costs. Follow these tips to learn how you can make your older home more energy-efficient.

Replace Light Fixtures

Older homes typically have traditional incandescent light bulbs, a cheaper but inefficient lighting option that ends up costing you more money in the long run. In fact, if you were to power an incandescent light bulb for 25,000 hours, it would cost approximately $169, double the price of powering most light bulbs on the market.

Make your old home more energy-efficient by installing LED light bulbs, which use 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs. Not only does this mean a lower electric bill, but fewer bulb replacements, too.

Upgrade Insulation

Adding insulation to your basement and attic will reduce the rate of hot and cold air flows out of your home, potentially saving you up to 50% on your monthly heating and cooling costs. We recommend contacting a professional to determine the type and amount of insulation you need to add to your home. Insist on doing it on your own? Follow these tips to learn how to insulate your old home yourself.

Replace Water-Hungry Devices

Older homes also often have poor water efficiency, so swap out showerheads, faucets, and toilets with low-flow, energy-efficient models. Not only will this save you money on your monthly water bill, but it can make a huge difference in your monthly utility bill as well. Switching to low-flow showerheads alone can save you $145 a year on electricity costs, according to ENERGY STAR.

Seal Air Leaks

Before air conditioning was invented, homeowners rarely thought to seal air leaks in their homes, and if they did, the material used made it nearly impossible to create a complete seal. As a result, hidden air leaks are the cause of most of the heat loss in older homes.

Homeowners can easily and inexpensively seal drafts coming from doors, windows, and baseboards without having to hire a qualified technician. The U.S. Department of Energy provides the following tips when sealing air leaks in your home:

  • Caulk and seal air leaks where plumbing, ducting, or electrical wiring comes through the walls, floors, ceilings, and soffits over cabinets.
  • Install foam gaskets behind outlets and switch plates on outside walls.
  • Replace door bottoms and thresholds with ones that have pliable sealing gaskets.

Like these tips? Subscribe to NOPEC’s Energy Connection newsletter for more energy-efficiency tips and chances to win smart home technology.





Tags: Energy Tips
Categories: Energy Efficiency

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