If you are a homeowner, you have probably asked yourself, how can I make my home more energy efficient? With fuel costs rising and increased awareness about environmental conservation, more of us are searching for ways to decrease our fuel costs and energy consumption. People will often question the method of heating their home. Is it efficient? What would be better? When In fact, most of us should be looking at the how to keep the heat in our homes.
The most common loss of heat is due to air leakages. Check windows, doors, foundations and attics to see if you are experiencing heat loss in these areas. A great way to test for this is to have an ecoEnergy audit done. You can check out the Government of PEI Office of Energy Efficiency for a list of approved energy advisers to perform the audit. After the audit, the energy advisor will review ways to fix energy inefficiencies in your home. If there is work that needs to be done to improve your homes energy efficiency, you may qualify for a loan or rebate. Check out the Government of PEI Office of Energy Efficiency's, Residential Energy Efficiency Program to see if the work you will do qualifies.
Here are some specific things you can do to immediately reduce heat leakage:
- Seal frames around windows and doors with caulking.
- Make sure that your attic is adequately insulated as well as concrete foundation walls in the basement.
- Any power outlets on exterior walls should have an insulated pad inside to keep out drafts.
- Install a programmable thermostat in your home to ensure that the temperature goes down at night and when you are out of the house during the day.
- Replace exterior doors that are in bad shape or may not be insulated with storm doors.
Here's an illustration that shows where heat can escape and air can leak into the house:
Perhaps your heating source is a part of the problem. There are many different heat sources to consider and one source that may be optimum for one type of home, may be less efficient in another, so it's important to do your homework. Listing and understanding all of the heating sources on the market today can be a daunting task. Natural Resources Canada has compiled an extensive list of home heating sources on the Government of Canada website. It gives in depth information on your heating options and how each different type will affect your heating bill.
If you would like to contact the Prince Edward Island Office of Energy Efficiency you can do so at:
31 Gordon Drive
Elmer J. Blanchard Building
Charlottetown PE, C1A 6B8
Phone: (902) 620-3690 (local)
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