Eventhough summer time is far away (at least for us US folks, our Australian readers can use these tricks immediately), these tricks are great to implement during the cold winter days as they will not only keep you busy and warm from activities, they make sure your home is ready for spring and summer.
Always install patio covers, awnings and solar window screens to shade your home from the sun during the hottest parts of the day. For additional savings, use strategically planted trees, shrubs and vines to shade your home. Estimated savings: 7,5% in cooling costs.
Fix Leaking Ductwork
Have your ducts tested and any leaks repaired as leaking ductwork attributes for 25 percent of cooling in an average household. Note: duct cleaning is not the same as duct sealing. Estimated savings: 15% in cooling costs.
Increase attic insulation
These days most attics don’t have enough insulation or have insulation that isn’t working as well as it should be. After determining how much you wish to increase the R-value, you’ll have to decide which type of insulation best fits your needs and budget. Many home owners choose to use blown-in, which, while a bit messy to install, is an inexpensive way to improve your home’s energy efficiency. Estimated savings: 10% in heating (during winter) and cooling (during summer).
Install a Whole-House Fan
A whole-house fan is an effective alternative or complement to home air conditioning. The concept is simple. Bringing cooler outdoor air into the house takes advantage of nature’s own cooling system. Nights and early morning are the best times to run the fan and lower the overall temperature in your home. Estimated savings: 5% in cooling costs.