Small Wind Guidebook/First, How Can I Make My Home More Energy Efficient
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First, How Can I Make My Home More Energy Efficient?
Before choosing a wind system for your home, you should consider reducing your energy consumption by making your home or business more energy efficient. Reducing your energy consumption will significantly lower your utility bills and will reduce the size of the home-based renewable energy system you need. To achieve maximum energy efficiency, you should take a whole-building approach. View your home as an energy system with interrelated parts, all of which work synergistically to contribute to the efficiency of the system. From the insulation in your home’s walls to the light bulbs in its fixtures, there are many ways to make your home more efficient.
- Improving insulation and sealing air leaks in a home are two of the fastest and most cost-effective ways to reduce energy waste. Homes built prior to 1950 use approximately 60% more energy per square foot than those constructed in 2000 or later.
- Turning your thermostat down 7° to 10°F for 8 hours a day from its normal setting can save as much as 10% on heating and cooling.
- Installing exterior or interior storm windows can reduce heat loss through windows by 25% to 50%.
- Replacing 15 incandescent light bulbs with energy efficient bulbs can save approximately $50 per year.
- When shopping for appliances, look for the Energy Star® label. Energy Star® appliances have been identified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy as being the most energy-efficient products in their classes.
For more information on how to make your home energy efficient, see Energy Savers: Tips on Saving Money and Energy at Home.